Living with intent, social engagement, learning, growing, giving
December 23rd is little Christmas Eve to Norwegians (lille julaften) and today we had beautiful snow so I’m going to consider this to be a white Christmas even if the snow melts before the 25th!
We’ve had a lovely few weeks despite viruses visiting our home. On Wednesday night we went as a family to Nidarosdomen ( cathedral ) for the Anglican carols. The adult choir sang and it was glorious. I loved every minute of it and I sang the carols I remember from childhood and the service put the carols into context for me.
A friend from Australia and his girlfriend came to stay with us for 4 days. My husband prepared typical Norwegian meals for all of us and I took them to a few places in town.
On Friday night I took them to a truly wonderful concert in Nidarosdomen ( cathedral ) of the boy’s choir with the Trondheim soloistene (a chamber orchestra who I was told won a Grammy award this year) and the very famous local violinist Arve Tellefsen. Not only was the cathedral spectacular as a venue, the orchestra, Arve and the choir were fantastic. I loved every minute of the concert and it was a great introduction to Trondheim for our guests.
On Saturday we took our guests to the Christmas markets (julemarked) to see the handicrafts for sale and try innumerable delicious local treats like cheeses, cured reindeer and ham. I stayed on at the markets with our guests and we drank juleøl (Christmas beer) and listened to a local troubadour while sitting in the cosy warmth of a huge tent.
On Sunday I performed with my choir in a Christmas concert at a nearby church. My family and our guests came along and the church was full. At choir practice on Thursday evening I had asked our choir master if we would warm up before the concert because we are pretty awful if we don’t warm up. He laughed and asked if he could tell everyone I had said that then when I objected he told everyone (thankfully in Norwegian) that someone in the choir requested that we warm up so that we aren’t awful in the concert. I looked at the floor and hoped nobody realised it was me. Everyone agreed and we did warm up and our first concert went really well and we sounded pretty good in the recording that I heard afterwards. The two year old grandson of one chorister danced in front of us and some people joined in when we sang Hallelujah.
It was wonderful to have guests stay with us and now we are enjoying having our apartment to the 4 of us again.
We also went to the airforce band performance in the church of our lady (vår frue kirke). The city mission provide shelter and warm food and drinks in that church for the handful of homeless people in Trondheim and it was nice to sit with them in that church and enjoy the music together then have a warm cup of gløgg (mulled wine).
This is our first Christmas in Trondheim and we are going to rest, relax and eat too much rich food! We will light candles and if there is snow we will play with and on it, if there’s ice we’ll skate and of there isn’t either we’ll walk and ride bikes!
Wherever you are for Christmas I wish you a calm and enjoyable time. To my loved ones in Australia, I will think of you at the beach while we huddle around a candle. To my family in Poland wesołych swiąt! To my readers, thank you for reading my blog and best wishes to you for 2017!