Oslo day 1
I got woken up by a call on Alex’s phone. That wasn’t what bothered me, it was half an hour later that he came in and said that the call was his work calling him in and we needed to be out of the house in 20 minutes. He works as a relief teacher and someone had called in sick. We left the house at 7:45. I don’t mind getting up early, but I usually give myself plenty of time. I am happy to sacrifice an hour or more of sleep to have breakfast, shower and 15 minutes leeway. He had me thrown out after 20. Annoying. Plus at that time of the morning, nothing much is open.
What I did was I went to the centre of town and went to a place Alex had suggested as a place you can get free internet. It didn’t open until later but I wanted to find it. Firstly, I went to the tourist info place. Luckily, this was open. I wanted to find a medical place so I could get a medical certificate. Oh, I forgot to mention, the whole point of flying down to Oslo was because I was coming to the end of my 90 days in the Schengen area. With an Australian passport, you get a total of 90 within an 180 day period in this area. Schengen is an agreement between many of the European countries which allows them to have open borders for people to travel through. In terms of travelling, it is like one big country. And I was approaching that 90 days. I think I was up to 80. This meant I needed to work out a different way of staying longer if I wanted to continue travelling. My favourite idea at the time was to get a working holiday visa for Norway. I had really enjoyed my there plus they don’t have the Euro and they earn lots of money and they all speak really good English so I could get away with not knowing Norwegian well.
So the mission was visa. The target was Norway. To get the visa, I needed a medical certificate to prove that I was in good health and that I wouldn’t be running into hospital every few days because of something. The tourist info was able to tell em a place and I called them using my mobile. When I had the booking, that’s when I went looking for the place with free internet, which, as it turns out, doesn’t exist very much. I looked and looked. I had the address. The tourist info had said it to me as well and it was in Shoestring but it simply was not there. They were renovating a building so I guessed that that was it. Eventually, I gave up. I was asking people and they knew about it but had no idea where it was. By this time, I decided I may as well wait in the medical centre building.
I found the place with relative difficulty, and only had to wait 15 minutes or so. The doctor I got was pretty good. He knew what I wanted and had a bit of a sense of humour. He did his thing, signed all the little pieces of paper and gave me my certificate of good health. I then left and went to a maccas to use that free internet I had been looking for. Talked to Clare for a while on skype and did some searching for stuff, on other stuff and stuff. It was very tiring. I eventually found a place I could go to and talk to someone about what visa requirements I needed. Just to clarify. I left the maccas at about 2:20 I have written here in my notes. This is relevant as it took me about half an hour to walk to the building and the place closed at 2:30. I was told that I could call as late as 3:30 however. I kind of knew where I was, right near the Anker hostel. The place I had stayed last time. I knew they had free internet and I also knew that they have no idea what is going on, as in the staff at reception, so I decided to steal there internet.
I went in and found a spot and called. The man I spoke to was very helpful. Told me all I needed to know about where to lodge my application which was one of the main reasons I called. I used internet there for ages as well. I knew Alex wasn’t getting back until about 8:30 so I really didn’t have much to do other than sit around. While I was there I saw one of the staff members getting into a nice verbal argument with a couple of different people. I don’t know what it was over but they were both angry. I know one was over a deposit of some sort which was eventually returned and the other I have no idea. I know I asked a question at some point “where can I get a passport photo taken” (for my visa application) and he kind of scoffed, looked at me strangely and then talked to me as if I was a child while telling me some places. Dickhead. It is not as if you can Google “Passport photo locations Oslo”. What do you expect me to do. After that I had a feeling that he was the reason there had been arguments. Dickhead.
Eventually, I left. It was about 8:00. One of the places Dickhead had suggested for passport photo was the train station which I needed to go to anyway to get to Alex’s. I eventually found the machine somewhere, somehow, by accident I think. I took my photos (Damn, cameras were made to take pictures of me!) and got on my metro train. Halfway there, I decided to check the message he sent me about what time he was arriving. It was 9:30 not 8:30 (He put it in 24 clock which always confuses the hell out of me) so I went to the nearby maccas and used more free internet for an hour, leaving at 9:30 so that he had time to beat me there. It worked. When I arrived, he had only been home a few minutes. We had some dinner which was reindeer (!) with potatoes and chatted for a bit before going to bed around 10:30. We both knew we had to be up early the next morning again.