By Simin Jamaly, PhD student TREC
You are not a Norwegian if you do not know how to ski! Before coming to Norway, you will probably have a very strange question at the end of the job interview ”I wonder…do you know how to ski?”
It does not matter which job you applied. Maybe you are an engineer and you will work in the middle of the ocean, but this question is common in job interviews in Norway. You may already be aware of the importance of skiing in Norway, and you get that you will go to a country that has perfected the art of skiing, which they know themselves for sure are proud of it. If you know how to ski (thank goodness!), most of your problems are solved; otherwise, you have to learn how to ski as you get out of the plane. After coming to Norway, you will probably be told the history of legendary Norwegian Sondre Norheim, the inventor of the world’s first relatively stable ski binding and often credited as the big pioneer of modern skiing.
After one year living in Norway, you will understand they have the right to ask that question because of the long and cold winters. As soon as their babies (I really mean baby- not a child) show signs of walking, they’re sent outside with a pair of cross-country skis to begin the practice. Cross-country skiing is considered a national sport. Some people take it one-step further and buy roller skis, enabling them to ski even in the summertime! If you want a genuine and traditional Norwegian skiing experience, you should perhaps not focus as much on technique, or even where and when to go, it is so much as the traditions. Try a cross-country skiing trip in the forest and fill your backpack with fresh oranges, thermoses full of hot chocolate, a “matpakke” (packed lunch), and foam pads for your sitting comfort. Oh, I forget KvikkLunsj, or “Quick Lunch”, as it sounds to the English-speaking native, which is Norway’s version of KitKat but somewhat different.
TREC is always eager to offer a healthy work environment to employees. We will go to Charlottenlund park for the ski-day and will have so many competitions on Friday. We made an innovation for lunch and we will have hot dogs and afterwards Thai foods. Such a lovely day!