Source: "The Social Guidebook to Norway"
I was invited to the family of my first Norwegian girlfriend for Christmas
She came from a place so remote that the Sun did not rise from November to January
She was from Nord-Norge
Northern Norwegians are special Norwegians
I was looking forward to connecting with the family with long conversations around the fireplace, making food and enjoying long dinners
The first morning at 7AM
The father knocks on our door
it was time to eat breakfast
When we were done eating we were asked to put the leftovers in small bags
The father said
"Let us go Cross-country skiing"
I looked at him for a moment
and I thought that he was joking so I said
"But it is dark outside..."
He looked at me surprised
"This is no problem, we have headlamps.”
And for seven hours we went over valleys and mountains
in a snow storm
It was impossible to talk neither with the person in front nor the person behind
We only stopped to eat the frozen "matpakke"
No one managed to speak really as it was very cold and windy
We just exchanged some words about the practicalities of skiing
Should we change wax?
Should we take this valley or the other?
When we finally got home late during the afternoon
Everyone was so exhausted that we prepared simple food
Having simple conversations
This lasted for three days
After these three days
I had built up trust with the family
Norwegian build trust through physical pain an suffering
And that was just the begining
I was yet totally trusted
There was one more physical test remaining...
Read the rest of the story in"The Social Guidebook to Norway" before you give it away as a Christmas gift this year!
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