Archive for Month: July 2016

“Actual Journalism” and Indian Food

The blog challenge with Elin is soon coming to and end, so I figured I should keep my promise of “five posts a week.”

This weekend went by so fast! Not because I did lots of stuff in my free time, but because I worked long shifts every day. On Friday I was out covering the event I mentioned in the previous post, before I drove an hour to visit some people’s cabins for another story. The weather was fantastic, and it was a nice break from all the buzz in the newsroom during the day.

Yesterday I wrote two more stories, and today I visited some folks on their yachts downtown — for another piece I’m writing, mind you. I even got a sunburn, so I’d say it was a pretty decent day at work.

It’s hard to believe I only have five shifts left before the internship is completed!

Throughout these past weeks I’ve written more stories than I usually do during two full semesters at school, so I’d like to think I’ve learned a thing or two about efficiency.

My wrists are actually sore from all the writing, blogging and screenwriting, or maybe it’s because of the handstands I’ve been doing lately, I don’t know.

But I’m truly grateful for the opportunity to try what it’s like to work as an actual journalist.

Hah, have you noticed I rarely refer to the journalistic profession as just “journalist” or “reporter”? I always say “actual journalist.” Must be because I used to pretend I was a journalist when sneaking around to shoot a documentary last summer.

Anyway, after work today I spent some great quality time with my dear sister, Celena. We ate Indian food on the porch, and binge-watched the final season of Orange is the New Black.

Moments to keep <3

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Photo by: Celena Lavelle

Have a blessed night,
Maria

Weekend Update and Hugs

Thanks a lot for the response I got on the “Things I don’t get about Norwegians“-post. I’m surprised how many Norwegians actually agrees with me, haha.

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From last yesterday’s late night shift in the newsroom. Aah, it was so peaceful being there all by myself.

I don’t have much time to sit down and write a lengthy post, but I just want to share an interesting experience I had yesterday.

I was out covering an event here in town, and then I suddenly stumbled upon a former classmate. I haven’t seen him since middle school, and even then we didn’t really hang out. But guess what?! He gave me a hug! I guess I’m not the only hugger here in town after all. And that really warms my heart.

He might have read my post beforehand, but it doesn’t matter. I’m just happy hugging is still somewhat socially acceptable. Keep it up Norway!

Now I have some film festivals to apply to, so talk to you later.

God bless,
Maria

#FlashbackFriday

Things I don’t get about Norwegians — PART 1

One of the most fascinating things with living abroad is the fact that you’re able to see your own country through the eyes of a foreigner once you go back to visit. It’s now been two months since I went back to Norway for the summer, and in this post I’ll share the “strange” things I’ve noticed as I’ve been observing the culture with a set of foreign eyes.

You may want to consider this a follow-up to a post I wrote about “things I don’t get about Americans,” last year. Just to equal things out.

Please don’t get me wrong. I don’t feel like a foreigner in my own country, but I guess two years in the Midwest has influenced the way I see the culture here. As a Norwegian myself, I’m probably very biased, but I don’t feel too bad about it because I’m technically British enough to vote in the UK. (So if this whole thing bothers you I’ll act as a “Brit” for the purpose of this post)

1. Hug-ophobia
I know Midwesterners think they don’t like physical contact in the form of hugs, but they do — more than Norwegians anyway. My fellow Augustana Viking, Elin Hægeland wrote a great post about Norweagian hugging etiquette. Read it HERE.

I, on the other hand, hug people — everywhere. When my car (aka Charlie) broke down in Sioux Falls earlier this year, I hugged the guy who helped me because I thought that was a natural way to express my gratitude. But according to Karen I “paid him with my body,” haha. That came from another Norwegian, so I think you all get my point — hugging strangers isn’t socially accepted in Norway, I guess.

2. The compliment-issue
I give compliments, and I mean every word of every one of them. Not because I’m trying to get compliments back, but because I think people deserve recognition for what they do and who they are.

Accepting compliments, however, seems to be harder for Norwegians to do. (Gosh, if feels weird referring to “Norwegians” from a third-person perspective, but I don’t know how else I can talk about it without insulting anyone, lol) I’ve learned that complimenting other Norwegians can backfire. Some people seem to think I have a secret agenda if I tell them they look good or have nice shoes. Others just look at me like I’m some weirdo.

Like this:

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The same thing happens if I accept a compliment like I genuinely appreciate what they just said.

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Mhm.

Aaaand that leads me to the next thing.

3. “The Law of Jante”
I think the awkwardness around compliments is caused by the fact that many Norwegians don’t want to come across as full of themselves, cocky or over-confident. According to a former teacher of mine the core of the Norwegian mentality is “The Law of Jante”

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Ouch. No wonder why compliments are tricky. But it’s true — Norwegians don’t take up nearly as much space as Americans… both literally and metaphorically.

And that leads me to my final point of the day.

4. The sandwiches
The wonderful sandwiches Norwegians wrap up in small packages and bring with them everywhere. They look like this:
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On the inside they look like this:
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These 300 calories make up a perfectly normal breakfast, lunch or even supper — sometimes all three in the same day. Quite the contrast from the American “three-1000kcal-hot-meals-a-day” philosophy.

I’ll post a second or third post about my Scandinavian discoveries, so stay tuned.

Have a blessed night,
Maria

Exercise Addiction

It’s now been 23 days since I worked out last time. 23 days! Before you continue reading and start assuming I’m beating myself up over the fact that I haven’t been to the gym, I suggest you read THIS POST first.

I’m writing this to say that I’m proud of myself — I’ve been able to avoid working out for three full weeks, and it’s been six weeks since I did a hard workout!

And the result so far? Well… I can, for the first time in years, walk down stairs with only a tolerable amount of pain in my knee, which is progress! My plantar fascia feels better too, but I’ll give it some more time, just to be on the safe side.

Okay okay, I don’t expect you to know what a “plantar fascia” is, and I’ll save you the struggle of googling it 😉

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It’s the connective tissue under the soles of your feet. It’s been bothering me ever since the half marathon in May, which was ultimately why I decided to take a break.

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But man, I miss running!

The upside is that I have more time to spend on other things, and I’m confident something good will come from this.

Have a blessed evening,
Maria

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