Seems like a lifetime ago, (but I have been terribly slack with this thing of late), when Siggy and I went to Norway to spend Christmas with his family. Upon looking at my Australian Passport, the immigration man at the airport enquired if it was my first time to Norway- I replied, to him and my surprise that it was my 5th!
The previous 3 visits had been in summer however, and I was eager to experience the extreme contrast of winter - after all, with a broken boiler at our house in London (meaning no hot water or heating for the coldest December on record - ever) I was quite unfazed by the prospect of super-sub-zero temperatures.
It was around -14 to -18 every day and there was a thick blanket of snow covering everything. Where in London the snow stays white and pretty for only a few hours before coming brown and slushy, because of the temperatures in Norway is was powdery and sparkling white everywhere.
While we did spend a lot of time indoors eating (home made spelt bread with Norwegian brown cheese/christmas rice porridge with butter cinnamon and sugar/marzipan/cod etc) we did venture out from time to time for some walking, sledding and skating. We would be inspected before we left the house to ensure we were wearing 2 layers of pants, thick enough socks, 2 pairs of gloves, something covering our neck, thick enough jackets and long enough beanies.
This was the making of Siggy's annual personalised-novelty Christmas card. To get an idea of how crazy he is, I wouldn't even stand outside to take the photo fully clothed, but took it from a window on the balcony.
The 3pm sunsets are quite strange at first, but the light is so beautiful and all the houses are so cosy, I came to embrace it, and the excuse it gives for watching TV during the day (when on holidays!).
It was so beautiful and we were so spoilt by Siggy's family, it was difficult to return to grey old London. I now feel like I've had my Norwegian winter fix and am looking forward to my 6th visit being in the summer so we can bbq, swim and stay at the summer cabin.