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Friday, September 28, 2012

Norway

I didn't drink a drop but...beer fest in Norway was amazing! Here are some videos from the Norway Oktoberfest party. I couldn't resist sharing. It was honestly my favorite type of party: everyone was nice, good music and best of all >THREE HOURS OF DANCING. Like it was amazing for me. I thought I sprained something in my knee the next morning I was so sore. FROM DANCING. love it love it love it.

VIDEO 1: Just a video of the end of one of the contests they held for lifting barrels. This guy won so they shouted about it. 

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VIDEO 2: This large man was like the MC of the night and he was hysterical. Big belly.

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VIDEO 2: They literally sawed a log on stage. 


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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Norway Getaway

Not long after we arrived and started classes two of my friends and I bought super cheap round trip tickets to Oslo for the weekend after our first exams. We booked a hotel the day before we left after realizing that when Ryan Air says "Oslo Torppe" as the airport, this is not Oslo. This is 2 hours AWAY from Oslo. Due to our short time there and early Sunday morning flight we deicded to stay in the old whaling town, much closer to the airport, called Sandefjord.

All we really wanted was an escape after all of our studying and exam taking and this is exactly what we got. I went for a nice run on Saturday morning and was snapped some shots of the town and also climbed this rock with hiking trails to look over the city.

The houses and architecture here made everything so cute and quiant. I know my dad would have appreciated it!



This was next to a gorgeous cemetery but I didn't think that would be appropriate to take a pic of.
Can't make it out in this picture but this woman had 2 small King Charles and they were ADORABLE. Made me think of my neph-fur, Nicholas.


We spent the day shopping around and I made sure to stop for hot drinks when I wanted to. We also got some waffles on the street from these girls and got some free ones from our hotel. So good. 


Since we were in an old whaling town it was only appropriate that our hotel carried a whale theme.  The carpeting was pictures of whales and they had bones, baleen, models and all sorts of whale related ridiculousness everywhere. Including a very very detailed model of a whaling enterprise at sea!
Notice the guts and jaw



 
This thing was not lacking in detail :)
After exhausting ourselves shopping it was time for Oktoberfest! Norway style. We had heard about a beer fest going on and saw the tent during the day so headed over that night. It was amazing. It was a mini Oktoberfest full of ridiculousness, spilt beer and peanuts. Comparing this to Oktoberfest in Munich 2010 that I went to it was almost as fabulous. Just had to remember to say Skola! instead of Cheers! or Prost! We sat with some random guys and fit right in! It was so much fun. Not fun getting up early the next morning to catch our flight...but totally worth it. 

I love Norway and cannot wait to go back. Everyone there was beautiful and there were definitely tons of blonde people there.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Pipers

On my long rides here with some of the guys from the triathlon club I have been lucky enough to hear some Scottish tales.

THE PIPERS

So one Sunday we rode down to a town called Peebles and then through some gorgeous lands to a town called Innerleithen. Here we stopped for a coffee at a local cafe and it was so nice to get some caffeine but getting going again was sort of awful...eek.

BUT My cycling buddy started telling me tales that distracted me from my frozen toes and hands.


So there goes a tale that there was a piper who was in a pub in Peebles one night and made a bet with his buddies that he could walk to Innerleithen all while pipping a different tune on his pipes. This is a pretty far way....but he must have been a hardy bloke cause to ensure he did not win the bet his friends punctured a hole in his piping bag so he would not make it! Turns out they were major jerks because since he couldn't use his pipes correctly on his journey through the hills he got too winded pipping and DIED! So the hills are now called the pipers in his memory. They were very pretty to bike through. 
Just us and the open roads through the dead piper lands!
 

This sort of shows my fav part about the landscape here; there are so many colors of grass which gives the countryside quite the quilted look. 


Those small white specs are sheep. One of the best parts of the ride was getting to a section where there were LITERALLY no cars, people or anything and just a babbling stream and SHEEP with no fences or gates. We had to yell at them to get off of the road. My riding buddies had me yelling "SHEEP ON THE ROAD!" and it was pretty funny. 


Yeah my eyes are closed.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Training in Edinburgh

There are basically 3 groups for me to train with here: the Edinburgh Triathletes which is the city's club, the University of Edinburgh triathletes through my school and the triathlon section of the Edinburgh Road Club. Each group has at least one training session per day and add to that the ample number of masters practices available through my pool membership and I have so many options of people to train with! Everyone has been extremely helpful and nice at the sessions I have been to. I love the masters practices here because there are usually only 4-8 of us and the practices can be very challenging and we get lots of individualized attention.

I have been running on my own, which I like, but do need to scope out some good speed sessions because this is where I am highly lacking. STILL. Although I think it is getting better.

For biking I have attempted to go out on my own a few times but it has only left me frustrated and like sad. I just end up biking in circles and on super busy roads with cars wizzing by. So I finally went to one of the triathlon clubs Sunday long rides. I am so glad that I did! I was so hesitant to go because the gorup meets up about 5 miles outside the city center and I just knew I would get lost on my way there. And I did. And I have a GPS. Like I dunno why this place is so difficult for me. Maybe its the roundabouts or the driving on the left...I dunno but I hope I eventually get a handle on it. Anyways I went out with 2 guys and a girl and we ended up just me and 2 guys finishing up the ride and we went about 72 miles through GORGEOUS Scotland! It was so nice to see some of the sights, ride along the coast, ride though the hills, ride through some of the most prestigious golf courses around and see the cutest little towns. The leader of the ride is awesome in that he tells me stories as we ride and lets me know where we are.

This is North Berwick which is one of the towns that we got to ride through. So cute!


The picture below is of Bass Rock which is right off the coast and apparently puffins live there. I need to go back and find those sometime!



Picture of the golf courses we rode through. 



I have some pictures from some others rides and runs that I will post later.