Friday, 29 June 2007
Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Tuesday, 26 June 2007
I think Sopho Khalvashi is my new favourite person.I loved My Story at Eurovision,and I also loved her fabulous dress (not the scary pink one from the national finals,the red one).So I just went on her website and she's got loads of songs you can download on there.My particular favourites are Fantasy Land,Tell Me Why,You Don't Know How I Feel and the interestingly titled On Adjarian Motives.She also does some pretty super ballads as well.And,according to the biography page,she likes Paolo Coelho!She is indeed fabulous.Thank God there's more to Georgian music than Katie Melua!
Monday, 25 June 2007
Also worth mentioning is Mihai Traistariu. He’s another favourite of ours, Tornero is without doubt the best ESC song ever, but this month we discovered Dimmi Si O No, which is pretty funky.
May- Aah, my favourite month of the year : ). Right up until the day before the final, I didn’t like The Ark. I was severely disappointed that Måns didn’t win Melodifestivalen, therefore I couldn’t be bothered to like The Ark. But they are fabulous, Ola is not only divine, but he’s also a great lyricist, not so much with The Worrying Kind, but I do like the darker stuff like Tell Me This Night Is Over. I also bought the new album when I was in Norway, and it’s pretty good. Apart from The Ark though, this was also the month I discovered Chelsi (my faaaaavourite band of the moment. I still love Samaya Lyubimaya, I think it’s rather lovely), and the delights of Atomik Harmonik : ). Also, although it’s now nearly a year old, I bought Aleksander Denstad With’s album, and was introduced to How About- the most stonking piece of pop I’ve ever heard, I LOVE it! : )
June- Mmm, Sergey Lazarev. Not as hot as Dima Koldun and not as pop-tastic as Dima Bilan, but probably twice as fabulous as both of them put together. Fake is a super song, the lyrics are awful and it’s quite possibly the campest thing I’ve ever heard, but I love it immensely. I also love I’m Gone, which is neither camp nor has awful lyrics, Just Because You Walk Away, and Do It For Me. I think he should also win something for having the best album cover for Don’t Be Fake. It’s a bit odd. Also loving some more Chelsi songs (ie- Stan Moey and Popolam), and also All I Want Is You off of The Ark’s aforementioned fabulous album Prayer For The Weekend.
January- I was rather excited on Christmas Eve when I found out that Moldova had already chosen their Eurovision song for Helsinki. And then I heard it. Afterwards I was worried that ALL the songs this year might turn out to be rubbish. But then in January, I came across this video.
Mr Koldun came into my life and alleviated my worries with the fantastic Guildford Europop anthem that is Work Your Magic. I loved it from the first time I heard it (yes, even from this awful quality video), and it soon became a massive favourite in our Bright Yellow Holiday Camp (well, with me and Keira anyway). Dima frenzy soon ensued, we set up a Facebook group stating that he must win Eurovision (in its heyday there were a whole 32 members or something), and we were (subtly) introducing Work Your Magic to everyone we knew…Fabulous. As far as I know, there wasn’t anything else worth noting that I heard in January.
February- Mmm…not much going on in February by the looks of things. However, I believe it was this month that we created our own fabulous cocktail that we call Loving Potion, which, basically, is LOTS of vodka with a few other bits thrown in :)
March- Oh yes, March. As a fan of Anžej Dežan, I was both shocked and appalled at the fact he didn’t qualify from the semis last year. Never mind Kate Ryan, yeah Je t’Adore was an alright song, but Mr Nobody…what’s not to like about a big theatrical pop ballad sung by a man with an amazing voice and the wardrobe of a camp pirate who likes to swish his cape around in the chorus? Anžej’s become something of a legend to us in the Holiday Camp, and he also wins the prize for having the coolest name in pop. Anyway, it was a rather exciting time when we discovered the 100% pure piece of happiness that is Vroče. It’s our anthem (even though neither of us speak Slovenian), and many a time we could be found in the kitchen singing away at high volume. We even- noticing the sad lack of a video on youtube, and in fact that lack of ANY Anžej videos on youtube- choreographed our own little dance to it. It’s pretty spectacular stuff. March was also the month of Drama Queen by the fabulous DQ, Cara Mia by Måns Zelmerlöw (I used to like him until someone pointed out that he actually looks rather like someone I know), Eta Bila Ljubov by Dima Bilan, King of Disco by Akcent, and the fabulous Lovepower by Krazy Mess Groovers. March then, was a rather good month : )
By the way...if anyone knows of any Russian music channels that I can watch online,I'd most appreciate it if you told me :) I was looking for some earlier,and somehow ended up listening to Radio Belarus for about half an hour while some man with a hypnotic voice talked about importing tractors from Moldova...
Sunday, 24 June 2007
Friday, 22 June 2007
*UPDATE* -They appear to like their chav pop in Norway.I think this is the 3rd consecutive girl I've seen wearing dodgy sports gear and lots of gold :S
- Oh my God.Norwegian technopop is officially FABULOUS
-There's more chavs on now so I'll tell you about Kurt Nilsen's new song.It's amazing.Sounds a bit Andreas Johnson-esque,which can only be a good thing.It's called Push Push and apparantly he released it in Norway this month.Mmm,did I mention I didn't think my trip through properly?There's no video on youtube unfortunately,hopefully NRK will keep this on their site so I can sneakily record it with my camera and convert it into a dodgy mp3...
- Ooh, a gratuitous shot of Aker Brygge.How I miss Oslo!
Tonight in Oslo,there's this big festival thing going on at Rådhusplassen. It's sponsored by VG,which is the greatest newspaper in the world,and I'd like to work for them one day.Anyway,not only are Venke Knutson,Lene Marlin and Kurt Nilsen going to be there,but The Ark are as well!How did I not hear about this before?Kurt Nilsen is a legend,Venke Knutson duetted with him therefore she's cool,Lene Marlin is fabulous coz she's Morten Gamst Pedersen's cousin,and I love The Ark.Ola Salo is a fabulous lyricist,and The Worrying Kind was nothing short of a Europop anthem in our kitchen in Guildford last month!This happened in January as well when I somehow managed to miss the Russian festival in London.Next year,I shall so be better prepared!
Wednesday, 20 June 2007
Last night I was feeling rather rubbish for various reasons.Then I watched some Fabrika and was immediately cheered up by the sight of Dima Koldun wearing a monster that he'd made out of cardboard boxes.Crispbread towers,box monsters...there's seemingly no end to this boy's talents :)
In other news,I beat my sales target today,woohoo!It doesnt really mean much though,I'd better not start planning my trip round Central Asia just yet.
Tuesday, 19 June 2007
In the meantime, I've been obsessing over some funky Europop chooooons.
1- Filip Kirkorov & Dima Koldun- Kak Sumashedshi Ya (How Crazy I Am)
A nice little duet by the sexiest man in Belarus and the overlord of Russian pop. God knows who persuaded Dima to wear that jacket, it's awful (although it's Moschino,apparantly). His belt buckle also looks suspiciously like the cross on the Norwegian flag. And his fringe isn't as immaculate as it usually is. All in all then, not a great look. Just wait til you see Filip though. He's gone for the classic (?) suit jacket and red and white tracksuit bottoms look, and an earring that wouldn't look out of place in the Elizabeth Duke section of the Argos book. And the hair...well,here he is in all his bouffanted brillance. (It's a fabulous song by the way)
2- Chelsi- Ya K Tebe Ne Podoydu (I Won't Approach You) (?!)
Roman Arhipov has come straight from the Filip Kirkorov School of Hairstyling. Only he's a lot younger, and blond, so he can get away with it (almost). Arseniy and Aleksei also look like a pair of Pantene models (rather lovely ones though). I love this song, it's nearly as good as Samaya Liubimaya, but not quite. Although it does get bonus points, because I like the intro, and the way they say 'podoydu' :)
3- Dima & Georgiy Koldun- Bit' Mozhet (Maybe)
What's better than a video with Dima Koldun in it? One with Dima AND his rather attractive older brother of course!Not sure if this is new or not, I think it might be,because Dima hasn't got his emo fringe in this video.It's a really nice song,and the video's set in some weird castle where the clocks go backwards and things go on fire. There's also a lot of interesting card tricks going on for some reason. Anyways, the more I watch this, the more I think Dima might be in danger of losing his Sexiest Belarussian title. His brother is rather lovely...
Monday, 18 June 2007
Anyway, question time...
Have you ever had a dream that explained something that happened in your past? Predicted something that happened in the future?
I’m quite into dreams and psychology at the minute actually. Can’t say I’ve had any that explain something that happened in the past, although I used to (and sometimes still have) this recurring nightmare, ever since I was about 8 I suppose, about going down never-ending steps. It was actually really scary, and apparently it means there’s issues from the past that I haven’t dealt with properly or am keeping suppressed. Don’t know what that could be though. And yeah I had one predicting something in the future. I dreamt I’d get 62% in my French Grammar exam before Christmas. Seeing as I didn’t go to Grammar lessons for 8 whole weeks, I didn’t think that was very likely, but it’s exactly what I got. Interesting…
Of all the airports you've been in, which one would be the best one in which to be stuck for 12-15 hours?
A few years ago I was stuck in Gatwick for something like 13 hours, when we went to Croatia. It wasn’t THAT bad I don’t think, I think Gatwick is my favourite airport out of all the ones I’ve been too (if I had to choose). Foreign ones tend to be not very interesting, so I guess Gatwick was the best place for it to happen. Better than Pula in Croatia anyway, it’s so small there’s only 6 departure gates and 2 shops. That would NOT have been fun!
What is the most mysterious phenomenon you have ever witnessed?
When we were in Tunisia (which is one of the most boring places I’ve ever visited, mostly coz the men scared me so much I didn’t really want to go out, so I just stayed in and enjoyed the beauty of all the Scandinavians at our hotel) there was this crazy wind on the last day we were there. It was quite scary, it just happened really suddenly, and it was really strong, but hot. It felt like a big massive hairdryer. I didn’t much like it.
What is your most favorite saying? What one thing (word or phrase) do you say the most?
What would be a dream come true?
Working for VG in Oslo. Or getting the chance to travel around Central Asia and write about it. I’d love to be a travel journalist.
What is your favorite sandwich, made at home with your own hands?
I make a pretty damn good prosciutto and gouda poppy seed baguette with lettuce and tomatoes. Made with ingredients from Aldi : )
Name something you think is fun to do that most people wouldn't think so
Translating. I love translating lyrics and I also get quite excited when I’m listening to foreign radio or something and can understand something they say. I was rather excited this afternoon when I understood a line from Pozdravlaju by Dima Bilan. I’ve really been trying to improve my Russian lately, so I was rather pleased : )
When listening to music do you tend to focus more on the lyrics or the melody?
I’m definitely a lyrics person. Although I do listen to a lot of foreign stuff that I just enjoy the melody of. I’ve got songs on my ipod in 21 different languages, so obviously I can’t understand them all. I try and translate some of them though, and some of the best lyrics come from places you wouldn’t expect.
What's the most severe weather event you've experienced?
Apart from the weird wind in Tunisia, I experienced a rather terrifying thunderstorm in Croatia a few years ago. We’d been in a restaurant, and it had been raining most of the night, but when we eventually decided to leave, the thunder started, and the wind, and the lightning. And what made it worse was that we were in the middle of a forest (I always seem to end up in a forest when I’m in Croatia…) so it was pitch black, which made it even more scary and impossible to see what was happening. Also, I was wearing heels which even on a normal day is a stupid idea, but in the middle of a big arse thunderstorm in a Croatian forest when you’re trying to cross a wooden bridge, it was even worse! There was also the rain in Norway last year, I’d say 18 hours non stop rain was quite severe. Even if the forecast in the paper said it was ‘light showers’. Mmm…
Do you wear a watch every day? If so, describe it.
I have an array of fabulous watches. I have a Cosmopolitan one that you can change the colour of, it’s flimsy looking but pretty indestructible, I dropped it down 2 flights of stairs on several occasions in Germany, but it still survived. I also have a rather expensive DKNY one, but I never really wear it. My best one obviously is my Norwegian Axcent one. It’s white leather and it’s big. You could never lost it. I saw it in this jewellers in Oslo last year, and it was half price and came in this big fancy white box. And I had to have it coz on the dial it says Axcent of Scandinavia, which I thought was rather cool. And it looks a bit like the one Andreas Thorkildsen wears, so it must be cool : )
Friday, 15 June 2007
By the way,I'm rather happy at the minute seeing as I'm sort of employed.I'm a (commission based) cosmetics salesperson,or that's the title I've given myself anyway.Hopefully I'll have enough sales to actually make some money tomorrow...although I do doubt it.Either way though,I sold another shitty CD on play.com today.Oh yes,the money's rolling in :)
Just thought I'd leave you with this delightful picture of Dima. Mmm,his eyes are so pretty....
Thursday, 14 June 2007
Wednesday, 13 June 2007
Crumbled up flake and bubblegum sauce. Mmm…I wish we had ice cream vans around here :(
What is your favorite breed of dog?
Huskies I think. Apparantly we’re gonna get another dog, I’m not quite sure why, Marko is enough to handle. But if we get one, I want a Siberian husky that we shall call Dima, or a little fluffy Italian Bolognese spaniel that I’d call Lorenzo
What music puts you in the mood for a tropical getaway vacation?
Ooh…Wonderful Place by Kristoffer Karlsson is the ultimate holiday song I think. Haven’t heard it for aaaaages. Also some dance stuff like Skies by DJ Doublestar and Sans Egal by Stefano Sorrentino are quite holidayey. Haven’t heard them for ages either.
You're stuck on a deserted tropical island. Assuming you have a way to play music, what five albums do you want to have with you? MP3 players do NOT count!
Mmm…1- Coming Home by Aleksander With
2- And The Glass Handed Kites by Mew
3- Revolverheld by well…Revolverheld
4- A Part of Me by Kurt Nilsen
5- Enjoy the Ride by Marie Serneholt
If you could start a magazine, what would it be about? Who or what would be on the cover of the first issue?
It would blatantly be about Europop, I think there’s somewhat of a niche in the market. The cover would be that nice picture of Dima Koldun in his pants. I can’t think of a better picture to attract someone to buy a magazine. Unless of course there was one of Arseniy Borodin in his pants…
Tuesday, 12 June 2007
As it was Dima’s birthday yesterday, it got me thinking that there’s not actually that long (just over 20 weeks in fact) until mine. This means some serious planning for the great occasion is needed. I’m going to be 21, so that’s something exciting in itself, but I also want the day to be the most fabulous ever, because I won’t even be in the country for my birthday next year. Which will probably suck a little bit. So these are my plans.
Obviously by the time November comes, I will have found myself a lovely amazingly gorgeous Russian boyfriend (hopefully he’ll be a sexy blond Siberian, but I’m not too fussy). And obviously, because his dad will be a ridiculously rich oligarch or something, he’ll have bought me something very very fabulous for my birthday, such as a nice big platinum and diamond ring. That would be rather cool. So that’ll be a good start.
And then of course there’ll be the party, where I’ll invite everyone I know. Well, maybe not everyone, there’s a few people I know who I rather detest, so it would be best if they didn’t come. I’m not quite sure where it’s actually going to be yet, but it shall be very big, and there will be a huge specially made dancefloor, one that lights up and stuff, and of course, there will be many, many glitterballs. Everything will be pink, the tables will most probably be covered in pink velvet stuff, or maybe just ridiculous amounts of pink glitter and sequins, I’m not sure yet. There’ll be one of them champagne fountain thingys, only with pink champagne obviously, coz it’s better. And my cake, well, it shall be like a nice wedding one, with the 3 separate cakes, and that’ll be pink as well. And possibly decorated with feathers.
In terms of entertainment, there’ll definitely be a few drag queens doing their thing. Only good ones like DQ though. I’m sure it’d be a suitably fabulous venue for her. We’ll get Anzej over from Slovenia as well to give it a bit of Vroce, and hopefully he’ll bring his cape as well so he can thrash around a bit to Mr Nobody. The other songs he does are a bit heavy for a fabulous affair such as this though, so he’d be free to go after that. Unless Keira had other plans for him, which she probably would. Then it would be time for a kick arse DJ, DJ Bobo maybe? No, maybe not. I’ve formulated a provisional playlist, although it’s rather incomplete at the minute.
ABBA- Dancing Queen: no fabulous party would be complete without it
Mihai- Tornero: Europop ANTHEM, must be played. If you don’t dance to Tornero, there’s something seriously wrong with you
Alcazar- Crying At The Discotheque: It shouldn’t just be me and Keira who know this one, I remember buying the tape of it when it came out over here years ago
The Ark- The Worrying Kind: Bit schlager, bit rocky, bit 70s, fabulous
DQ- Drama Queen: The definition of fabulous
Arseniy Borodin- Stan Moey: Did I mention my Russian boyfriend will look exactly like him?
BWO- Chariots of Fire: Camp!
Charlotte Nilsson- Take Me To Your Heaven: One of the best ESC songs EVER
Mans Zelmerlow- Cara Mia: Obviously
Sergey Lazarev- Fake: Just to make it all even more camp
Sergey Lazarev- Shattered Dreams: Just to keep Keira happy
Monday, 11 June 2007
I love this picture of Dima,how could you not love a man wearing a top that says 'fabulous'?
Today is a very special day, not only because I sold my first CD on play.com and not only because I sort of got my results today and they were a bit better than I expected,but because the lovely Belarussian honey that is Dima Koldun is having his 22nd birthday today.Although watching him bounce around with all manner of inflatable stuff on Fabrika,you wouldn't think he was a day over 6.Anyway,look,here's a new video of him,apparantly this is his new song.It's apparantly called я для тебя which I think means something like 'I'm yours.' Mmmm.....if only :)
By the way,if you're as obsessed with Mr Koldun as I am,you'll probably notice that he appears to be wearing the same shirt that he wore for Eurovision.Yeah it's a nice shirt,but surely Filip Kirkorov could have bought him a new one,seeing as he did quite well in Eurovision and everything :)
Sunday, 10 June 2007
I used to be good at French. Maybe I could become good again if I had someone like Jonatan Cerrada to help me with it. Although I'd probably get distracted by the sexy accent, and the sexy eyebrow piercing, and the sexy hair, and oh, did I mention the sexy accent? Let's look at him...
It was still raining when we got there, and we had to decide whether to go and climb up Akershus fortress or go to the Nobel Peace Museum. Of course when I was there last year, the weather was lovely (I actually got a bit sunburnt), and there was a big festival going on, and a funfair that played lots of old Eurovision songs. So I didn’t do much other than sit on a bench at the top of a hill trying to be inconspicuous with my red and yellow disposable camera, while trying to dodge the wasps. I’d actually read an article on VG last summer about the sudden wasp plague of Oslo, so I should have been prepared. Anyway, we went to the Nobel Museum and cunningly got money off the entrance fee. They’re a trusting lot in Norway, you can just say you’re a student and they believe you and give you money off of things. We looked around the funky exhibition rooms (looking for anything Mother Teresa related really), which included a particularly funky room of little presentations about all the past winners on little screens on stalks, among all these pretty fibre optic stick things that changed colour. For a museum it was pretty radical. I liked it. There wasn’t that much to look at there, which was just as well, as we had to go and find the boat by 1 o clock. Which we did after having a quick look at the Aker Brygge shopping centre, which actually consists of several buildings that all look the same, and quite possibly have the same shops in. It looks like the German conspiracy has reached Norwegian shores- ANOTHER fire alarm had gone off in one of the buildings. Mmm…
Saturday, 9 June 2007
is the name of Dima Koldun's new song.Well it's not actually new,but the video on youtube is.And it kicks arse!
Name two things that made you smile this week.
Some of Keira’s infamously strange quotes from MSN and Facebook have amused me somewhat this week. Particularly “I wish I was Swedish so it would be a bit easier to marry Ola or Måns,” and- on the subject of Dima Koldun coming over to Britain to thank us for our Facebook group dedicated to him- “Well, Kent’s nearer Belarus I suppose, so he’d come to you first.” Damn right. Why would he go out of his way to go to Hertfordshire first when Medway’s on his doorstep? Hehe : )
Also, the programme Wedding Stories on BBC2 makes me smile. There were 2 really butch lesbians on there last night who were having a Rocky Horror themed wedding. I like watching people plan their weddings, it’s kind of exciting in an odd way. Even the strange, unconventional ones like that. I just hope one day I’ll have my own one to plan. And believe me, I’ve got some ideas for it already. It’ll be fabulous!
Fill in the blank: Don’t you hate it when ________?
You think you’ve given your nail varnish enough time to dry, after having sat still in the same position for a good 5 minutes, but then as soon as you move, it smudges? Yeah, I hate that too!
When you can’t go to sleep, what is your personal remedy to help yourself drift into Lullabyland?
I’ve never been good at sleeping. I think too much and it keeps me awake. It’s particularly bad when you wake up halfway through the night and start thinking about something very random and you can’t get back to sleep. That happened to me in Norway last week, I woke up and suddenly couldn’t stop thinking about Corinne Bailey Rae. I don’t even LIKE Corinne Bailey Rae! So that was quite annoying. Usually when I can’t sleep I put the ipod on. I’ve got a special sleep playlist with such delights as Sigur Ros and Mew on there. I used to use it quite a lot in Guildford when I lived nextdoor to Mr Noise from Nigeria. Wow, it’s nice saying that in the past tense….See, I can’t handle noise from other people, but I can listen to my ipod coz that’s me controlling the noise. Strange.
What is the most interesting tourist attraction you’ve ever visited?
Well, they’re not really touristy but the Postojna caves in Slovenia were really cool. I like the mysteriousness of caves, and all the little lakes in them. I imagine if you were to be left on your own in some caves it would be rather relaxing. For 5 minutes anyway, then you’d just be scared. I’ve been in other caves- in Barbados and Spain- but the Slovenian ones were the best, because they were home to this little… thing called a Proteus. They’re like lizards but they have no eyes and no features really, and they have to be left in the dark otherwise their skin goes brown. They’re kind of cute in an odd way. And apparently they’re one of the national symbols of Slovenia. I suppose the other one is Anžej Dežan.
You enter a pet store. Which section do you go to first?Fish! I like fish. Especially the little neon tetras, they’re quite nice. I’ve always wanted some, but it wouldn’t really work, coz I wouldn’t be able to think of 58 names for them. And you can’t just have 1 neon tetra, that would look a bit silly.
I had about an hour’s sleep that night. So on Tuesday, I was fucked. However, I did still enjoy the fabulous breakfast of salami and cheese rolls with ridiculously sugary tropical fruit juice and gorgeous Biola blueberry yogurt drink. I’ve been looking everywhere for yogurt drink over here since I’ve been back (well, Tesco, Sainsburys and Chatham’s Eastern European supermarket) but I can’t find anything except Yop. And that’s not the same. Tuesday was shopping day. However we were rather early in leaving, and the shops didn’t open for an hour and a half. So we went back to Dronningparken, where we were accosted by Retard Duck. Retard Duck was sweet, but she did quack funny. And she was a bit of a stalker. I’ve never had a duck that close to me before, and I was a bit unnerved. But I didn’t show it. When she realised we didn’t have any food, she waddled off back to the lake with her friend Limpy (he walked funny). She did however, come back to say goodbye to us when we left. Which was nice. We’d already discovered that Norwegians are friendly people, we didn’t realise the ducks were too.
I was slightly disappointed with the shopping in Oslo this time round. Researching before I went, I decided I wanted an ethnic-y type scarf from Bik Bok and some zebra print shoes from KappAhl. Could I find either of these things? No. I couldn’t. I was disappointed. I went to Byporten shopping centre in the fabulous aforementioned Oslo S, to look for Margaret Berger and Aleksander With’s albums. I didn’t find them, so I carried on walking around. I realised I was walking through rather a thick cloud of smoke at one point, but again, just thought that was probably something to do with tiredness, so I didn’t take much notice. It wasn’t though, it was an actual real fire and we all had to evacuate the building. That was a bit odd. Feeling the distinct lack of purchases, I hurriedly bought a nice but small top from Vero Moda and 2 CDs. Both of which are rather fabulous. We then went to the National Gallery (we had to attempt to do that twice actually, for reasons that I won’t go into), but to be honest, I was too tired to take much notice. I do remember seeing The Scream though. But I’ve never liked that picture anyway so I wasn’t too excited.We got the T-Bane to Frognerparken after that. I asked a nice Norwegian lady with a pram which tram you have to take to get there. Obviously my Norwegian was shit, because she immediately detected that I was British and told me in English to get the underground to Majorstuen. Majorstuen is the posh part of Oslo. In the world’s most expensive city, it’s the most expensive bit. Apartments there cost anything like £800,000 but they are very lovely so it’s probably worth it. I’d never used Norwegian public transport before, and I conclude that it’s fun. It’s better than ours anyway.
After a quick visit to Ordning&Reda on Bogstadveien (well it would have been rude not to) and after asking another Norwegian in Norwegian how to get to Frognerparken, we got to Frognerparken. I think it would have been much nicer in the sun, but seeing as the sky was grey, and it was quite windy, that’ll just have to be a theory that I test out some other time. I don’t like Vigeland’s statues. Particularly the Monolith. I find that one a bit creepy, and the others I just find a bit boring. But the park itself was rather impressive, it’s huge, and the fountain and bridge are rather attractive. We got the tram back to Hausmann’s Gate, which was another new experience. I like the trams, but there seemed to be a stop every half a metre, which was a bit annoying. However, it was a nice tram line (tram 12 to Kjelsås) as it went all through town and Aker Brygge and everything. Which was nice.
Not much else happened on Tuesday. We had a nap when we got in. But that didn’t last long. Then we had dinner (from Narvesen), and watched an odd Swedish film (with subtitles in Nynorsk- a minority language only spoken by the people in the most northern part of Norway). I could understand some of the subtitles, but for the most part, had no idea what the hell was going on. Although there was a sexy blond man in it. And you saw him naked about halfway through the film. Which helped.
Friday, 8 June 2007
When was the last time you mailed a card to someone, and what was the occasion?
I sent Keira a card on her birthday. It wasn’t as great as I’d planned it to be, as I was going to make a special Dima Bilan themed one, made out of all the naffest pictures of him that I could find. But I discovered that our printer was a bit knackered, so I just had to settle for putting a rather lovely picture of Dima B and Dima Koldun (wearing some kind of dead animal) in there instead. In one of the many interviews with Dima K that we’ve watched, he says that him and Dima B ‘don’t connect anymore,’ so obviously this was taken before the big argument. Which we assume had something to do with boots.
Is your computer's home page set to an Internet Service Provider, news/newspaper site, blog, search engine or portal such as Google or Yahoo, or something else? how often do you change your homepage setting?
My homepage is VG, a Norwegian newspaper. That’s where I’ve learnt most of the Norwegian that I know. I first set it to that when I was thinking of applying to UCL to do Scandinavian Studies, I thought it might be useful to know what’s going on in Norway and stuff. I ended up not applying there and regretting it ever since, but anyway, VG’s still a great newspaper and I haven’t changed the homepage thing for about 2 years.
What's the last book you read, and, what book are you planning on reading next?
The last book I read was Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indriðasson, which was a nice Icelandic murder mystery. Actually it wasn’t nice, it was quite disturbing, but it was good to read. I think I’ll probably read No Holiday next. It’s about all the most horrible places in the world that you probably shouldn’t visit.
Which TV shows from the past would you like to see back on television and why?
Going For Gold. That was a great quiz. I remember quite enjoying it as a kid coz of all the foreign people on it. Maybe that’s where it all started…
If you were offered an opportunity to travel free of charge to any destination on earth for just a 30 minutes visit, where would you choose to go and why?
It’d have to be Antarctica really. Mostly coz I could never really afford to go there otherwise. And although it’s very far away, I’m thinking you probably wouldn’t need much more than 30 minutes there. You could probably get a good idea of what the rest of the continent is like in that time. Cold, snowy, penguins…
If you could wake up tomorrow morning speaking any one language fluently--in addition to English--which language would you choose and why?
Italian. I can’t speak Italian, apart from a few little pointless phrases. I can understand it a bit, but it would just make sense for me to speak it, as much as I wouldn’t really use it in everyday life.
The area outside the station is called Jernbanetorget, and being as my life practically revolves around all things Norway related even when I have the misfortune of being in this country, I knew that there was going to be some roadworks there during May. They’re improving the downtown Oslo public transport system or something. Don’t know why, it seems pretty good to me. Anyway, these roadworks confused me somewhat. But it didn’t matter, I still managed to remember where Storgata is. Although the walk along it to get to the hotel seemed a hell of a lot longer than it did last year. Maybe it’s coz it was raining. It made me rather happy to see that the hairdresser’s nextdoor to the hotel and hostel still had the advert in the window with Morten Gamst Pedersen on it. Not sure why, but it did.Our room wasn’t as good as my one last year, and I’m sure there were some channels missing on the telly, but it was still clearly on the quieter side of the building which was good news. Last year I hardly slept at all thanks to all the trams/police cars/drunk Norwegians that went past at all times of the night. But not only was our room this year quieter, you could also see Holmenkollen from it, which was pretty damn fabulous. Especially at night when it was all lit up. That was pretty.
We went out to have a look around Karl Johan’s Gate after we’d dumped our stuff. Karl Johan’s Gate is the main street of Oslo, it’s ideal for lazy tourists, as it’s home to no less than 4 rather important buildings- Oslo university (which is very pretty), the National Theater, Stortinget (the parliament) and my personal favourite- Det Kongelige Slottet (the palace). The National Gallery and town hall are also pretty close to Karl Johan’s Gate, a fact that I somehow managed to miss last year. We went all the way to the top of the street, which I’m sure I read somewhere was a mile long (it so isn’t), because I was rather excited about going back to Dronningparken, one of the royal parks behind the palace. Dronningparken is my favourite part of Oslo. I’m not sure why. It’s pretty, and relaxing, and it has lakes with ducks in. I went there last year after my long-winded walk to Aker Brygge, and I sat there for no less than an hour (in fact it was more than an hour), on a little grassy bank, listening to Kurt Nilsen and watching ducks swim about on the lake. It was lovely, I’d never felt that relaxed and calm before (even if there were multiple motorbikes whizzing past noisily on Parkveien behind). I remember having lots of little philosophical revelations there last year, can’t remember what they were now though. A new feature of Dronningparken this year though, seemed to be Fit Cyclists. I’ve never seen so many attractive men on bikes. Over here the only people who ride bikes are old men in lycra. Not so in Norway. Thankfully. We walked back up the path to the palace. The Norwegian palace obviously being the best palace in the world, because you can get so close to it you can practically touch it. There’s a few guards around- attractive ones obviously- but it doesn’t really feel like somewhere where the most important people in the country live. I’ve read before about the Norwegian royal family being quite in touch with their people, and that it’s not uncommon to see them around the palace gardens and such places. Whether that’s true or not, I’ve always thought it would be quite cool to meet them. They’re obviously so much cooler than our rubbish royal family. What I also find quite cool every time I go to the palace is that there’s always a Volkswagen Passat parked round the side. I like to think maybe that’s what the crown prince or someone drives. Now that would be cool.
We walked back down Karl Johan’s Gate. I read somewhere years ago that all the ugly Norwegians are shipped off to Finland. This may be true. Everyone I saw in Oslo was ridiculously good looking. Even the chavs. And that’s saying something. We found a French restaurant, with French/English/Norwegian speaking waiters. That confused me. But then I think I was quite tired at that point. We stopped off at the local Narvesen before going back to the hotel. I love Narvesen shops, they’re the best. Not only do they sell super Norwegian newspapers and Porøs chocolate, they also sell bits of pizza and stuff. Fabulous! This month they had an offer on pølse. Hot dogs basically. For 19 krone. Which is pretty good. They were nice too. Anyway, I bought my VG there and then I was happy for the rest of the evening. Probably.
Thursday, 7 June 2007
If you were nominated for a Nobel prize, what would it be for?
Ooh ooh,I've been to the Nobel Peace Museum!I went there last Wednesday.In Oslo :) It was nice.Erm,I dunno,it would obviously be something to do with Europe...I think I'd like to promote British awareness of the Central Asian republics.Dont know why,or how,but it sounds like a nice idea.Central Asia fascinates me,and I think it should fascinate you too!
What American city does not deserve a place on the map? Why?
Tut.I wouldn't know,I've never been there,nor would I like to.
Who is your most admired athlete of all time?
Andreas Thorkildsen.Just because he's hot :) Yeah,I ain't shallow! I do like gymnasts too,I think gymnastics is by far the coolest sport in the Olympics.My gymnastic ability extends no further than forward rolls and the occassional somersault.So I admire anyone who can do better than that!
What is the most common compliment that people give you?
That I'm clever :) Yeah,you know it makes sense!A lot of people think it's impressive that I know 5 languages or whatever it is,but the truth is,I'm shit at everything else,so it's not that impressive!
If you could be an expert in any one subject, what would it be?
Scandinavian languages and culture.I'm still pissed I didn't go to UCL :(
What three words come to your mind when you hear the word 'white'?
Snow,ice,hospital.Don't know where hospital came from.
What is your average bowling score?
Well the last time I went,I think I came 3rd.Not sure what I got though.I'm pretty shit at bowling.And I can still only use the orange ball coz I'm weak.
How much money would you like to be making in ten years?
Hopefully somewhere above £50,000 would be nice.I certainly couldn't imagine doing a job for anything less than 30.Of course,I hope to be working in Norway in 10 years,so £50,000 a year is a big possibility...it's just that the Norwegians get taxed so much that they're left with about 3p a week to live on. *
*possibly a slight exaggeration
So there you go,your life has obviously been enriched by reading that.I'm going to wash my hair now.
Norway. Norge, Norvège, whatever. The ridiculously long country in western Scandinavia with its many islands, lakes and sexy men, is without a doubt the greatest place I’ve ever visited :) I went last year obviously, which was a great experience, mostly coz it was the first time I’d been anywhere on my own, and it was a nice little opportunity to prove to people that I’m not in fact socially inept and can do things on my own. All this, while having the greatest 3 days ever of doing…not very much, but having the pleasure of doing not very much in a very pretty place. This time though, sitting in the departure lounge of Heathrow with James, watching Cash In The Attic, presented by irritating Jennie Bond, I suddenly realised that it was bloody brave of me to go on my own last year. The thought of doing that now rather terrifies me, which isn’t particularly good news for the year abroad next year…but whatever.
The flight over there was soooo boring. Yes it was only an hour and 45 minutes, and there was the fun of the half chicken and bacon, half ploughmans sandwich to look forward to, but it was really tedious. I don’t like sitting in the same place for more than 20 minutes at the best of times, but 35,000 feet above the North Sea with just a computerised map and the boring in-flight magazine to look at, was particularly testing. At the other end though, everything soon started to be fabulous. I like Gardermoen Airport, mostly because it’s small and you can’t get lost in it. I also like it because it’s got lots of nice looking Norwegians in it, a suitable welcome to the country that’s home to the world’s most gorgeous race. The luggage came (I was a bit disturbed to see that my fabulous new pink suitcase had somehow become rather filthy on its travels from plane to baggage belt, but not that bothered), and then it was time to go and buy the Flytoget tickets. What fun!
I like the Flytoget (the airport train). It’s clean, it’s quiet, it’s comfortable. Even this year’s addition of a group of annoying American tourists didn’t irritate me too much. Although I was quite put out that they’d already been on holiday in Sweden for a month before coming to Norway. How’s that fair? I’m the European, that’s the sort of thing that I should be doing! But anyway, the Flytoget whizzed on through the Buskerud countryside (I think that’s the right county :/) and after 20 minutes of admiring the pretty little traditional red wooden houses (that’s a lot of adjectives), we were at Oslo S. Oslo S is the best train station in the world. Not only because it has 2 shopping centres attached to it, but…well, it just is. I got lost in it last year, although on reflection, that was probably more to do with my stupidity than it had to do with its actual size. Didn’t get lost this year though, no, I got the right exit first time.
That's all I'll say for now.Stay tuned for more additions to My Ridiculously Long Account of What Happened On My Second Trip To Norway :)
So yes, I enjoy seeing England lose, especially when they’re playing little countries who most of the football loving population over here haven’t even heard of. I read on a few websites today (well I didn’t have anything else to do after my exciting morning of paper recycling), that they needed the 3 points tonight to have any hope of qualifying for Euro 2008. So obviously, I wanted the boys from the Baltic to win.
I’ve always been quite fond of Estonia, well, since 2001 anyway, when the lovely Tanel Padar won Eurovision in Denmark with a then record of 198 points with the naffest song you’ve ever heard. Even Tanel seems to be ashamed of doing such a thing now, I watched this interview with him on some BBC2 documentary about Estonia a few years ago (yeah,a whole programme about Estonia on BBC prime time- imagine!), and he’d gone all rock and had a new funky haircut and piercings and stuff. Clearly trying to distance himself from the associated naffness and camposity of Eurovision. I downloaded some of his new music off this dodgy Russian website the other day as well, it’s all metal and guitars and gravelly voices, most unlike the 3 minute cheesefest that was ‘Everybody….’
Anyways, I digress. I wanted Estonia to win tonight. But they didn’t. So England are gonna be in the European Championships next year. Boo!