Good Friday


German Easter decorations are out in force!


Our favourite ice cream cafe


Also, snow.


Sigh. We are so ready for spring.


Felix never wants to take off his pyjamas in the morning and for once we indulged him.


It has been a little stressful as Felix appears to be allergic to something in this house, but his ventolin puffer is keeping it under control. He just loves his Oma and Opa and has been practicing counting to ten in German.



I love how my Swiss friends always kiss on both cheeks (though I always forget).

I love how Felix always says, slowly and sweetly, ‘Mummy!’ when I pick him up from the barnehage, as though it were an unexpected treat, and he gives a little smile and trots towards me.

And I love how a South African woman I met today in a cafe told me that South Africans are very into their hugs, and I got a hug from both her and her three year old son as they left.

Good morning


Well, it’s evening here at the moment, but I like this snap of Whitby I took a few weeks back with the sunrise reflected in our windows. I have been busy teaching and preparing my course outlines for the autumn. Did I tell you that I have a very exciting temporary job for the autumn semester? I’ll be teaching full-time at the University College in my town – English Literature and Culture, and a second year subject in Postcolonial Literature. I’m very excited indeed.

I’m also happy to report that I passed my level two Norwegian tests that I took in January. I’m very pleased and relieved, and am already plotting when I can take the level three ones. They’re offered three times a year. October is probably the best bet but I’m allowing myself to consider May, in order to trick myself into progressing faster. I don’t need to decide till the first week of April.

Already I’m using every spare moment to feed words and grammar into my fuzzy brain. Learning a language is a funny thing. You can’t learn to speak a language without making a million mistakes, because everything hinges together and you can’t learn everything at once. At the moment it feels like I’m laboriously constructing a scaffolding in my brain, upon which I’ll be able to build a more elegant structure at some unspecified point in the future…

This afternoon I was wondering – just how exactly do you say ‘probably’ in Norwegian. I found it in the adverb section of my grammar book this evening: ‘sannsynligvis’. Very good, I thought. But then I read on, and discovered ‘modal adverbs’. ‘Ved’ and ‘nok’ also mean (approximately) ‘probably’, but they function a bit differently within the sentence. To complicate matters, these words mean completely different things in different contexts – I was more familiar with ‘nok’ as meaning ‘enough’. Suddenly a sentence I had been squinting at the day before became a lot clearer, if ‘nok’ could mean ‘probably’ instead of ‘enough’. A lot of the time I feel I’m peering hazily at one of those magic eye pictures, and just sometimes an image emerges out of nowhere.