If we were having coffee, I’d admit that I like autumn. With all my love-hate for it, swinging moods and sudden melancholy – I like it, I feel inspired by it. I like to watch and feel the change of seasons. And my secret pleasure is to watch Norwegian girls in their cozy sweaters, to crawl into cafes, to read a book by the window, a big cup of tea waiting ready on its sill. All the cliches about warm rugs, living candles and hot chocolates – I buy it every time :)) Even if a month later into autumn I will regret it – I still love it (in the start).
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am staying in Oslo for September. Why are in Norway, some have asked me. What happened to your Barcelona project?
Barcelona project is still on. But my project is again about fusion – about creating a life between two countries. And so I am working on its Scandinavian part right now 😆
Now, what really happened? My husband came to Oslo for summer to work, and I followed him. But some unexpected events turned up (positive ones), and so we are staying a bit longer to work on them. I came from Barcelona with a suitcase full of t-shirts and summer shoes, a pair of jeans and a raincoat, ready for all kinds of Norwegian summer weather. And I did quite well in these two months – practicing the minimalistic wardrobe :)) But now, as autumn has swiped in, I am in need of warmer clothes. And it is a great reason to go shopping :)) But from experience I know that the more I search for something specific, the less I find it. Well well 😊
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Norway has such a strong loneliness vibe. This season there are advertisements by the public transport company of Oslo, Ruter, with the same theme: a photo portrait of a person with a word “Hei” projected on his face and a text like “Lars feels lonely. Many feel like him. Say hi to Lars”.
On a particular rainy day, sitting on the bus and reading this text feels quite depressing. Can you imagine this in another country (if not Finland)? I imagine something like that in Spain would go like: “Lars feels like you all talk too much and stress him out. Can you give him 5 minutes of peace?” 😆
On Facebook everyone from Norway seems to have an amazing life – going to all the events, posting all those vacay photos, foods and drinks, checking in all those airports. My friends from Barcelona seem to have little to no life on Facebook (or maybe, I don’t know many enough). But I remember we shared so many more drinks and foods with them than for a whole year in Oslo. And no one was pulling out a phone to take a snap.
It seems that Norway is living so much online. And Norwegian society is so modern. While Barcelona feels more pre-modern. But also more real and more human, with people hanging out together on every corner bar on every day of the week. And you can always meet for a spontaneous tapas or something. While in Norway we all hang out more on the digital platforms. And pre-plan our coffee meetings sometimes two weeks ahead. I never felt so much interest for Facebook and Instagram as during these last two months 😆 While in Barcelona the months passed without me logging into one of them.
We all strive for modernity, but if this is modernity what I see here – I’d better travel back in time :)) I have read the book “Starbucked: A Double Tall Tale of Caffeine, Commerce, and Culture” by Taylor Clark until the end, and there the author says: “It seems that what we really appreciate in modernity is the residuals of what it is not”. In other words, what we really like, comes from pre-modernity, like social connection face to face. While modernity makes everything so effective, so comfortable, so clean – but too sterile. Don’t you have this feeling sometimes?
Or maybe, this is all my autumn melancholy coloring my view :)) Anyway, I have no more coffee left – so till the next time, friends.
What would you tell if we were having coffee?