"No, but hello!" Greetings from a happy Norwegian


illustrations from: "The Social Guidebook to Norway"

In some places around the word

When good friends suddenly bump into each other

They express their joy and enthusiasm in obvious manners

Often loudly

With a lot of body movements

And close physical contact

In Norway

Good friends may be a little more subtle

In their expression of feelings

They are still good friends

They simply expressed their emotions differently

Two good friends who haven't seen each other for a long time may great like this 

They tell each other "thank you for last time" ("takk for sist)

This phrase is also used to indicate to an acquaintance that you remember the person

Two friends who haven't planned to meet may express their surprise and happiness like this

 

«Oi» or «Nei, men»

translate to English as

"oi" or "No, but"

This is how Norwegian indicate they really are happy and excited to see the person

Sometimes the overwhelming emotion they feel does not show on their face either

And they may appears reserved

Or even “cold”

For those who aren't from here

Remember that if a Norwegian does not show much emotion towards you

it does not mean he is rude

Or that he does not like you

He just expresses feelings in a different way

The core of my writing is about helping interpret the world through the perspective of those who are different than you

--

Read more about my books here "The Social Guidebook to Norway"

 

By Julien S. Bourrelle

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