Berlin was cold, grey and rainy this morning when I had to get up early. Well, at least in my world it was early. 7 am. EARLY. 6 hours later I was in a different world. I’ve never been to Norway before. And I still don’t know much about it. But I fell in love almost instantly.

We drove through the countryside barely seeing any other car. Cesilie from Visit Telemark, who invited me out on this trip, drove our car like she was driving a rallye. I bet she could drive these winding roads blindfold. And while driving, she told us the story on how she once was stuck in traffic in the middle of a moose pack. Moose. I’ve never seen a moose and now i was anticipating being surrounded by them. I mean, who wouldn’t love being stuck in a bunch of moose? Imagine the photos!

Then Cesilie tells me that there had been a bear spotted here, last week. I went ‘wow’ and stared out of the window hoping to see one. Ideally one that can speak like they do in fairy tales. Because the landscape in Telemark really looks like from a different world – a fairy tale world.

But fairy tales do not always tell the truth. A pot of gold at the end of a rainbow? Not really. Believe me. I was there and no gold was found.

I learned a lot about Norway today, besides being really beautiful. Even the tiniest hill has a path leading to the top, because Norwegians always want to see the view from the top. And sometimes it’s also because sun is barely seen here in winter. Especially in the many valleys. Around here, people climb mountains to see the sun.

Another thing I learned today, is that the Norwegians like to drink coffee and lots of it. In the morning, after dinner or right before they go to bed. It doesn’t seem to keep them awake, they obviously are so used to it. And yes, they also like to drink alcohol. Even if it’s not as excessive, as some people may say. I was told that in the North of Norway, there’s the highest per capita consumption of Cognac worldwide, in relation to the population. I like that. With this in mind: “Skål”! (Hope I can sleep now with all this coffee inside me)

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