søndag 19. januar 2014

An Unexpected Journey

Preparing to leave your comfort zone is nothing to shake a stick at. It 

takes planning, patience, and perseverance. None of which I realized until 

AFTER I had already gone through security at Minneapolis International 

Airport.  If you have ever seen “The Terminal”, starring Tom Hanks, this will 

all make sense. The beginning of my trip started out something like that, 

minus the whole romantic subplot of course (damn). Maybe “Planes, Trains, 

and Automobiles” is a closer comparison…Nevertheless with a polar vortex 

bearing down outside and my flight to Trondheim (via Newark, NJ and 

Oslo, Norway) cancelled I scrambled to find an alternative route to my final 

destination of Trondheim, Norway. 

 After working with the airlines I was able to secure a seat on an 

outbound flight to Toronto that would get me to Trondheim. The only thing 

that stood in my way was Old Man Winter…and Copenhagen, Denmark…and 

Oslo, Norway…and all the security lines at each respective airport…oh 

and customs at each location too…did I mention my flight from Toronto to 

Copenhagen was also delayed? Well it was. 

Crap. Now Time (being the fickle mistress it is), was against me as well.

Wheels down Copenhagen…I made it over the vast Atlantic with a 

belly full of airline food and groggy from the flight. I soon realized I had only 

30 minutes to catch my connection to Oslo, and rushed to make it through 


Ever heard of Murphy’s Law? I wonder if Murphy created it to explain 

why stupid crap kept happening to him…or…did he decide to invent the Law 

to set in motion a diabolical plot to make sure you would definitely miss your connection to Oslo? I vote the 

latter of the two.  Again I had to post up at the Scandinavian Airline kiosk and figure out 

an alternative. I must say, the representatives I spoke with throughout all the 

delays and cancellations were awesome. It wasn’t long before I was settled in 

on the tarmac.

Wheels up Copenhagen. Wheels down Oslo. Guess what?!? No delays, 

no cancellations, no missed flights, no luggage…

Damn you Murphy.

My luggage was stranded back in Toronto, it never made the flight out 

of there. Luckily, I had heeded the advice of my siblings and packed a couple 

days worth of clothes and toiletries for just such an event. 

Boom. Covered.

Wheels up Oslo. Wheels down Trondheim. I had finally arrived, 

smooth sailing from here on out. It was 6pm Friday evening, I had everything I 

needed for the next couple of days until my luggage arrived and I was ready to 

get to check in to my housing and explore a bit. 

What’s this? The housing office closes at 3pm on Friday? And doesn’t 

open again until Monday you say? You have GOT to be kidding…If I ever 

meet this Murphy guy whether, in this life or the next, he is getting such a 

vicious Kung Fu kick to the shins it would make Bruce Lee blush.

Minor set back I suppose. I logged on to the internet and got in contact 

with a friend from the University of Minnesota who had arrived earlier in the week. He let me crash at his 

place for the weekend.  Desperate times call for desperate measures, even if it means sleeping on the couch 

of a Gophers fan. I bet Murphy was a Gopher fan, would make sense with how much he has haunted me so 

far.  Anyways with my temporary housing situation sorted and a couch to 

sleep on, I was able to attend a few of the orientation events being held.

Saturday morning, we hiked up to the fort situated atop one of the hills 

overlooking the town. The fort was built as a defensive stronghold against the 

Swedish, and has a commanding view over the town. We split into groups and 

competed in several events. While my team didn't win any of the events, we 

still had a ton of fun competing and getting comfortable with our classmates. 

Because my luggage containing all of my cold weather clothing was no where 

to be found, I was unable to participate in some of the other outdoor activities 

slated for Sunday.  Which is too bad, because I really looked forward to ice bathing.  Which wouldn't have 

been all that different from taking a shower at home seeing as my older siblings always took all the hot water 


After getting my housing situated, and receiving my luggage I set out 

to explore the city of Trondheim. It gets dark in Trondheim pretty early, with 

sundown around 4pm, so much of my first expedition was lit only by the streetlights.  I was impressed by 

how much of the stars you can see despite all the lights in town.  

I was able to take a few pictures as I walked around town with one of my neighbors.  Trondheim has an 

interesting mixture of old architecture and new, with their church dominating the view from the fort where I 

took most of my picures.

The main building on the NTNU campus is called the 

Hovedbygningen, and reminded me of Hogwart’s.

Which got me to thinking…

I’ve got it! Maybe Murphy wasn’t a Gopher fan…maybe he is 

Voldemort…or BOTH! Suddenly it all makes sense…That’s why Gopher fans 

are the way they are. I’m beginning to think this Norwegian air is good for 

existential thinking…or maybe I'm still sleep deprived from the time change.

Continuing my trek around the campus I saw people out on the soccer 

fields playing a friendly game of quiditch. If only I had remembered to pack 

my broomstick…if only.

 After snapping a few pictures of the campus and 

feeling more comfortable in my surroundings I turned in for the night. 

There is so much to do here and so many places to see it can be 

overwhelming at times. I will definitely need to come up with a game plan 

in order to make the most of my time here. Of course, it goes without saying, 

Murphy AKA Voldemort will certainly pop up again. 

Now that I have the internet situation sorted out, I will be able to blog 

more often. I am so excited to see what the next 9 months has to offer. There 

will be ups and downs for sure, but in the end isn’t that what an adventure is? 

The important part is how much you cherish the highs, and how resilient you 

are through the lows.

Until next time.