Monday, February 28

Dia de Andalucia - an ordinary Bank holiday

Today we have celebrated the Day of Andalusia. It has only been an ordinary Bank Holiday for the people down here, but closed banks, shops and supermarkets for us, have given some challenges.
Lots of people at the Paseo Maritim when we performed our daily exercise so it was good to have some experience in slalom from the winter activities. Congratulations to Marit Bjørgen btw.
The Andalusian Flag is green, white and green as seen on the photo together with the Spanish and the EU-flag
The wind wavered the flags but even harder the palms in our pool-area.
I can also gratulate a visitor from Cuba to my blog. At least he or her became the newest country (163) last Wednesday.

Sunday, February 27

Celebrating 137 years

Yesterday we celebrated Gerd and Arne´s 137 years birthday as we did last year.

After a delicious late lunch at Restaurant Terraza Acqua at the harbor, we walked slowly back home along the beaches. The sunny and warm days are inviting lots of people to the sand and salt water, and next week there is a holiday coming up starting with Dia de Andalucia on Monday F28.

Saturday, February 26

Donde estan los Noruegos

The pool area at the apartment hotel this morning.
None Norwegians except Tullen are heading towards the sun-beds this morning. Some Norwegian students are staying here during their studies at Atlantis Medical College, but they are normally arriving the pool after noon. What their tasks / duties are in the nights and early mornings ???? My lips are closed.

But where are the Norwegians. Home? queuing up at the subway for hours trying to reach the start of the skiing events at Holmenkollen?
Why have not Norwegians discovered this nice hotel during their winter holidays.
Perhaps the marketing has not been satisfactory, or is it only a hidden diamond for us selective. Perhaps it is best to keep it so.

Friday, February 25

Castle Beach happy hours bar

Our companion in the hotel bar. Not the crowded fru Burums pub, but a beauriful weather. Pluss 21 c.

Thursday, February 24

Sun protection required

When transplanted we need to be extraordinary careful when staying in the sun. The probability to get skin cancer is more than 172% higher than other people. When living in the southern Spain without a single cloud on the sky, every possible shadow is welcomed, even in front of the swimming pool.
Using caps or hats are similar requirement in addition to high sun protection factors.
But whatsoever, everything is better than the winter in Norway at the moment with rain, snow and temperatures around zero.

Wednesday, February 23

Costa del Sol instead of World Championship Nordic Ski

Yesterday we abandoned our flat in Oslo, and let the World Skiing Competition be the responsibility for the family from Wales. We left the winter and minus 18 C and landed in Andalusia to plus 20C.
This morning at 7:30 am the sun rose from the horizon of the Mediterranean Sea. We could expect another beautiful sunny day with temperatures over 40c in the sun.
Our daily exercise walk along the beaches started the first day. In this weather we see no problem getting early out of bed and perform a speedy (?) walk at the Paseo Maritime.
After approximately 3.5 km we turned around the Peseta-sculpture and returned home.
106 minutes was the track record this morning. It will be interesting to see if the condition improves during the coming weeks making the time under the 100 minute limit. At least we have to ignore the photo-stops during the stroll.

Monday, February 21

House Occupants

 Children from Great Britain occupying our apartment for the coming weeks. Hedda is satisfied if grandma is playing with her.
 Henrik a little bit tired after yesterday journey from Wales but fascinated of the painting by Terje Fagermo and dreaming about snow and dark night in the image.
Helene has discovered the piano and are exercising the C-cord (C-E-G) with her small fingers.

Sunday, February 20

Sunday in Frognerparken

It´s cold in Oslo, but on Sundays we have to stroll the nature with or without skis.
This Sunday we combined nature with culture when strolling around the famous sculpture park, Vigelandparken.

Thursday, February 17

Ready for Norway

In the coming weeks our grandchildren from Wales will visit our apartment here in Oslo. We have told them about the cold winter, and now they are ready for staying here.
The probability of the temperature for the coming days according to YR.NO

Wednesday, February 16

Dive into the Stream

For more than 20 years ago I was together with other HR personnel conducting a management development program in DNV under a broader concept that we called "Motivation for Change".

We used, among other slogans, the Heraclitus sayings "The only constant is Change" and "You cannot step into the same river twice" in the process, and wanted our employees to be aware of the ongoing changes in ourselves, in time, in professional tasks, tools, organization, markets, and thus be more adaptable to their own needs for adjustments in competence, working methods and understanding of the society as a whole.

Confusius has said “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”

Activities to improve team building was therefore an important part of the program.  Crossing a stream from stone to stone with only planks and ropes, was one of the challenges. Here visualized by Senior vice President HR Gunnar Rostad: "Walking the plank"

However, today I invite you to PLUNGE INTO THE STREAM.

In an article from 2009 by Erick Schonfeld Jump into the stream he talks about "Information is increasingly being distributed and presented in real-time streams instead of dedicated Web pages. The shift is palpable, even if it is only in its early stages.". He  quotes John Borthwick (founder and CEO of Betaworks) talking of
the real-time web: "A stream. A real time, flowing, dynamic stream of information — that we as users and participants can dip in and out of and whether we participate in them or simply observe we are a part of this flow."
and Schonfeld gives us an advise:
So jump into the stream and let it carry you away. Or you can stand timidly on the banks until everyone else around you has already taken the plunge.
My son-in-law David has in his blogposts written:
From January 23rd Real-Time Streams and the @Cloud
The way we have traditionally thought about the Internet has been in terms of pages, but we are about to see this changing to the concept of ‘streams’ (see Berry 2011). In essence, the change represents a move from a notion of information retrieval, where a user would attend to a particular machine to extract data as and when it was required, to an ecology of data streams that forms an intensive information environment. This notion of living within streams of data is predicated on the use of technical devices that allow us to manage and rely on the streaming feeds.
and from February 13th The Ontology of Twitter
the quality of media conversations are changing: instead of multiple, discontinuous, heterogeneous and unsystematic conversations, we now have single, continuous, homogeneous, nearly real-time updates of news, stories, lives, events and activities, all streamed through a common format that is distributed in real-time around the world. This, I think, helps us to think about the way in which a particular limited platform of data transmission has become a mass media and in doing so is preparing/teaching users to cope with real-time streams of information,
In the Norwegian philosopher Arne Næss book "Livsfilosofi" (Philosophy of life) he writes: ..... both I and my life is a kind of Stream. I am not going into the river (like Heraclitus) I AM THE RIVER.

Welcome to the evolving world.

Tuesday, February 15

It´s hope

Although it is minus 6 outdoor and the weather forecast for the coming days and weeks still indicate that we only are in the middle of February, we can see clear signs that spring is coming closer. In the streets where everyone including the fire brigade has great problems approaching, the removing of snow has intensified.
It is at last hope for the end of winter 2011.

Saturday, February 12

What do you know about Tajikistan

Tajikistan is a mountainous landlocked country in Central Asia with Afghanistan borders it to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and People's Republic of China to the east.
On Friday February 11th at 5.04.43 pm one of the internet users in the country searched the web for images connected to "Luis Viton" (Louis Vuitton) and discovered my photo of the concept store in Oslo from September 2008. Luxury products are of interest to people all over the world.

Tajikistan means the "Land of the Tajiks". The word Tajik was used by medieval Turks to refer to Iranian-speaking peoples. The territory of what is now Tajikistan has been inhabited continuously since 4000 BC. Tajikistan has a population of 7,349,145 (July 2009 est.)
The Culture of Tajikistan has developed over several thousand years. Historically, Tajiks and Persians come from very similar stock with a mutual language and are related as part of the larger group of Aryan peoples, once part of the Samanid Empire. Named after its founder Saman Khuda, who converted to Sunni Islam  despite being from Zoroastrian theocratic nobility. It was the first native Persian dynasty in Greater Iran and Central Asia after the collapse of the Sassanid Persian empirecaused by the Arab conquest.
Tajikistan considers itself today a secular state with a Constitution providing for freedom of religion.
More information about the Flag of Tajikistan (the number 162 in my archive) can be found Here.

Friday, February 11

Sky Watch Friday once more

Long time since last participation in the Sky Watch Meme but why not make an exception to the traditional blogging regime. Go here for more photos from Skywatchers.
Have a nice weekend.
And if you want a photo of what you may expect in the Norwegian Alps this weekend. Take a look at Rune Skogheim´s photo (smp archive)

Wednesday, February 9

A beautiful day in Oslo town

Sometimes there is no need for lot of information linked to a photo. This morning with the new prepared ski-tracks, a beautiful sun on the blue sky and minus 4 at Sognsvann tell it all. Have a nice day.

Monday, February 7

From Burkina Faso to Solvang

The temperatur in Burkina Faso was pluss 30 C this morning when we made a short visit to Solvang. The temperatur at our cottage was minus 2 C. I make this comparrison because another new visitor (flag no 161) arrived from Africa and this country close to the Equator.
Burkina Faso (formerly called the Republic of Upper Volta) is a landlocked country in west Africa. It is surrounded by six countries: Mali to the north, Niger to the east, Benin to the southeast, Togo and Ghana to the south, and Côte d'Ivoire to the southwest. Its size is 274,200 square kilometres (105,900 sq mi) with an estimated population of more than 15,757,000. Burkina Faso was populated early, between 14,000 and 5000 BC, by hunter-gatherers in the northwestern part of the country. Settlements with farmers appeared between 3600 and 2600 BC.
Earlier this winter I used my 4wheel drive suv to make tracks to the cottage. Today we walked in the tracks, but did not enter the lawn area due to "wrong" shoes.
The depth of snow at the ground is about 30-40 cm but the raspberry plants, individulaay attached to horisontal lines, have kept their right up position during the winter. Thus we can expect or at least hope for a good harvest later in the year.

Sunday, February 6

Amarone della Valpolicella - Highly recommended

On Thursday we tried to find out what the Wine-festival at Aker Brygge and Tjuvholmen really was. Due to lack of (or limited in Norway) promotion rights, we did not understand that by signing up to a non-problematic list of Italian wine lovers, we could for free taste gorgeous wines from various producers in Verona and Italy at a symbolic prize of 10 nok. Today our host at the lunch with Maja & co could give us more adequate information.
We therefore joined an international group of wine lovers and ended up with an undoubtable recommentation: The super-Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico DOC Acinatico  by Accordini.

Amarone della Valpolicella is the unquestioned king of the wines of Verona. It is obtained via the ancient production of Recioto which then became dry and bitter purely by chance; as a resultsince the beginning of the 20th century it has been called "Amarone", from the adjective "amaro" meaning "bitter". The unique and unmistakable feature of this wine is its’ production by original grapes of Valpolicella: Corvina, Corvinone, Rondinella and Molinara, which are considered a great treasure of this area. Another unique characteristic of this wine is the process of vinification: grapes are dried till February - March; it is a fine example of dry red wine refined in wooden barrels. Amarone is a wine of great importance, since it is the product of a rare micro-climate, exclusive vines and special wine making techniques.

Do you want another Quality recommendation this Sunday morning?
Follow Heathrow Airport and their  Customer Satisfaction approach on Twitter.
They should be a communication model to copy by many airports around the world

Saturday, February 5

Frozen fjord - Piperviken

The Bay of Piperviken is frozen. I do not know the thickness of the ice, but bottles of beer could be seen on the surface, so the pressure from some centimeters must be exerting against the ship sides.
The Bay of Piperviken is the area of the Oslofjord between Akershus Castle and Aker Brygge. The name of the area in the medieval was Gyljandi, derived from the verb gylja'howl, huut' (probably referring to the windy conditions in the bay).  Piperviken (or Vika) was the name of the previously Red Light district with Klingenberg and Tivoli in Oslo where we today will find the City Hall.

When we yesterday strolled the city and the quays, the sun was shining, but a chilly south-eastern wind made it uncomfortable to sit outdoors at Hannibals Hybel. We therefor continued to "fru Burums" for an afternoon drink.

Have a nice weekend.

Friday, February 4

California Job Case or "Settekasse"

In Petunia´s Blog-challenge this week she presented the theme "Småting" (small things) and showed her childhood "Settekasse". In our home we too still have one of our children´s Thypographic tools called California Job Case full of small things which the girls collected and exchanged between friends.
The compartmentalized wooden box used to store movable type used in letterpress printing, became very popular years ago, and maybe they all were leftover letter cases after the modern techniques took over the process in the books and newspaper printing rooms.
When loose letters (types) were used to put together words into lines, and lines to pages, the translator used a compositor to store types (letters, characters and symbols). The box usually consisted of two shallow tray or trays with specific location for the types. The box was divided into two parts, the lower for most-used characters (hence the name lower case), and the top of the lesser-used characters (upper case), such as uppercase.
Johannes Gothenberg was the first to use Movable types in the 1450s when making his 42-lines Bible. Gutenberg refers to the process as 'Das Werk der Bücher': the work of the books. He had invented the printing press and was the first European to print with movable types. But his greatest achievement was arguably demonstrating that the whole process of printing actually produced books.

Thursday, February 3

My favorite goodies

One of the side-effects from the medicine required after being transplanted, is the desire for putting anything in the mouth. Normally transplantees due to long term use of Corticosteroid (Prednisolon) will have huge appetite with the challenge of gaining weight.
My BMI is presently acceptable but only after constant control of goodies. I therefor recomment the small Spanish tomatoes "Dulcita". Some calls them honney tomatoes but nevertheless it is great as snacks.
In addition I can present a photo with at least "one" red point as RuneE always have told be make the difference.

Wednesday, February 2

Ha Lesa Mamele Bo Me HoTla Fela Ke Malem

"If You do not listen to Women, We will lose patience with You". This translation of the native Sotho language (blogpost title), can be the introduction to the presentation of the Lesotho Flag. The Sotho language is one of the 250 Bantu languages spoken all over the southern part of Africa.
The current national flag of Lesotho, adopted on October 4, 2006, features a horizontal blue, white, and green tricolour with a black mokorotlo (a Basotho hat) in the center. The design was introduced to honour the 40th anniversary of independence.
 I got my first visitor from Lesoto on January 26th this year and are now up in 160 flags. May be it is my daughters second cousin Stine, presently doing her Master in the South Africa areas, who has been the visitor, or maybe someone else.

The Kingdom of Lesotho, is a landlocked country and enclave, entirely surrounded by the Republic of South Africa. It is just over 30,000 km2 (11,583 sq mi) in size with a population of approximately 2,067,000. Its capital and largest city is Maseru. Lesotho is the only independent state in the world that lies entirely above 1,400 metres (4,593 ft) in elevation. Its lowest point of 1,400 metres (4,593 ft) is thus the highest in the world. Over 80% of the country lies above 1,800 metres (5,906 ft).

Because of its altitude, Lesotho remains cooler throughout the year than other regions at the same latitude. Most of the rain falls as summer thunderstorms. Maseru and surrounding lowlands often reach 30 °C (86 °F) in summer. Winters can be cold with the lowlands getting down to −7 °C (19.4 °F) and the highlands to −18 °C (−0 °F) at times. Snow is common in the highlands between May and September; the higher peaks can experience snowfalls year-round.
With this 160th country visiting my site, there is only 32 more to go to have all the United Nation Flags on my record.

Tuesday, February 1

Hedda sitting

There is always some milestones for newborn children. The annual birthdays, the first tooth and the day they start to wobble, the first understandable word (granddad of course), the end of using diaper, the first day at school, the PhD graduation, etc.
Today I can present the first day Hedda was able to sit and play by herself. With still eleven weeks until she reach one year (based upon pregnancy estimation birthdate) but as a premature born child 13 weeks too early at a body-weight of 647 gr, it is really one of the nice milestone day.

Keep on developing, Hedda. You are a strong little girl.