On Friday I was 23 years old, I was in the United States, and I was preparing to leave after my three months stay. Today, Monday, I’m 24, I’m in (snowy) Norway, I’ve had a great weekend with my family and it hardly feels like I’ve been away at all (except for the unpacked suitcase that I try to ignore). I’m not even all that jetlagged – I don’t think my body ever got used to the East Coast time zone, so adjusting it back wasn’t all that hard. In fact I think it’s harder for me now to adjust to the fact that I am a lot further north – this primarily has two consequences.
First of all, it’s colder. I mentioned we had snow today. It stopped a few hours ago, but it’s still white out (it probably will stay till the morning, then I expect it’ll all melt). Now, I like snow (at least on this side of Christmas), so I’m okay with this. I also have a new coat that I couldn’t use in the US (too warm), so I’m also okay with lower temperatures.
The other result of being further north is that it’s a lot darker here. It started getting dark at 4p.m. this afternoon (“the blue hour” – fall and winter twilight makes the whole world blue), and by 5 p.m. it was pitch dark. I guess this also helps with convincing my body it’s not midday, so perhaps I have winter darkness to thank for lack of jetlag. It also allows nice, cozy evenings in front of the fireplace. Let’s hope it won’t give me too much “darkness depressions” – usually I find spring before actually spring starts worse in that respect so I might be okay for now.
It is also dawning on me that now that I am back, it is time to return to my daily life. I’ve had a ton of greetings from friends, asking me when I’ll be back in Oslo (I’m currently residing with my parents in my hometown, in case I didn’t mention that). It’s very nice to feel so appreciated. The truth is, though, that I haven’t thought that much about when I’ll go back yet. Actually, I don’t even have a place to stay. (I have options, but nothing settled.) Since I ideally ought to get cracking on my thesis again pretty damn soon, there is no time to lose in getting back to Oslo (plus I want to see my friends). However, it is pretty darned comfortable being here, having my meals made, my clothes washed and no rent to pay. Still, I can’t have such luxury forever.
Finally, NaNoWriMo is on. I signed up not really believing I could do it, and I still don’t know if I can. But by now I’ve decided that I do want to make an effort. So far (2460 words) it’s crappy, but I know that it will get better once get further into the actual plot. The problem right now is that my back story doesn’t match the character, which eventually will mean I re-write the back story, but at the moment it’s too integrated in the main action for me to care, and in true NaNo spirit, I’ve decided to limit edits in favour of word count.
The view from my bedroom window this afternoon. I told you there was snow!