Spring is here!
Don’t be fooled by the snow everywhere. Norwegians have decided that it’s spring now, no matter how deep the snow is.
How can you tell it’s spring? Here are five signs of spring in Norway.
1, Everyone talks about the sun
We’ve been sun-deprived for months and when it’s finally here–even in small glimpses–we talk about it. You’ll also see people standing randomly in streets and at bus stops with their faces turned towards the sun. They are trying to catch a few rays, or more specifically, they’re trying to get those 20 minutes of sun we’re all recommended to have every day.
At workplaces and among friends people start to talk about those 20 minutes. “Did you get your 20 minutes of sun today?” <– that’s the big question. We’re all low on Vitamin D after a long, dark winter and we’re looking to the sun to fix that.
Sunscreen is definitely not in use. Not yet. Maybe not ever. We need those Vitamin Ds, you know!
2, People start wearing shorts
Yesterday, I saw the first shorts-wearing Norwegian which is one of the clearest signs that spring is here. Yes, the temperatures are freezing and yes, there is still snow. But this guy had seen a glimpse of the sun and that meant digging out the shorts from the bottom drawer. Sun = shorts = spring, no matter how cold it is. It’s a Norwegian fact.
Spring is the season where you’ll meet people in heavy coats and boots next to people in shorts and sneakers.
3, Bicyclists are everywhere
Some masochists will ride their bike all year around, but spring is the season where everyone will pull out their bike–and their bike shorts–and catch a few sunrays while getting from A to B.
4, The “utepils” season begins
“Utepils”–or outdoor beer–is one of the most important signs of spring in Norway. The restaurants will set their tables and chairs outside as soon as the snow is gone and everyone will enjoy their “utepils”. The first utepils always has to be photographed and shared in social media–or it didn’t happen.
My Facebookfeed is currently filled with pictures of people drinking outside. And here is a picture of me with my beer in the snow:
5, Norwegians follow the snow and seek to the mountains
One would think Norwegians would appreciate the spring and enjoy not having to shovel snow anymore. Don’t be fooled. Norwegians may enjoy their shorts and bikes and sun and utepils, but they also enjoy the harsh climate. They enjoy feeling at one with nature, feeling like Nansen or Amundsen working their way towards the Poles, fighting the cold and the snow.
Most Norwegians have a family cabin in the mountains. Spring and Easter are high seasons for visiting this cabin, shoveling snow and skiing, and feeling like true Norwegians.