Day 34- Friday May 27, 2016 Travel Day
We had the day to hang out before our traveling begin. Kelsey and I slept until 11:30 AM. That never happens for me! We went to get laundry, shower, and get ready to meet Martinez for lunch at 1 PM and be all checked out by then too. We walked to Gødt brød for lunch and then have the afternoon to hang out until we left at 4:45 for our next destination. Thomas and I spent the afternoon trying to find a map of Norway for him with no avail. It was actually quite surprising that every bookstore and every shop we went into did not have a map of Norway! We ended up going back to Fyrhus Kuba near the hotel for beers and to write in our journals. Thomas and I were able to make a quick run to the Vinnmonopolet or something to keep on hand over the next few days or week since it’s so expensive to buy alcohol in the stores.
We got on our bus and we started to drive south. I followed on my map along the way and originally thought we might be going to Tønsberg, but we actually ended up in Åsgårdstrand! I’m excited since I really don’t know where we are or what we could be doing here. We are told we can’t leave the hotel at all and this has me very curious!
The night ended after dinner and a group of us satyr him and went through our journals and shared and talked about all of our adventure so far which is pretty incredible!
Day 35- Saturday May 28, 2016 (episode 6, filming day 1)
Today we started our day at breakfast and met to film our “entrance” to the city. We walked along the pier and Harbor and talked about this place. We even chatted with someone on a boat who is cooking bacon! Thomas had the idea that Edvard monk lived here and that we might be seeing his house! He turned out to be correct! We walked up a hill where we saw a man painting a picture he was even wearing a straw hat and had an easel, PT, and pallet with him. From there we walked along the road and found Edvard monk’s house! We had to do interviews and went in small groups to tour the house. When we came out of our tour we met Fridtjof in front of four monk photos or portraits and we got the news of our next competition for the team advantage. We would be re-creating one of the pictures! Picture number one was of a bunch of naked guys swimming, number two was of four little girls, number three was of “the screen”, and number for the man and woman naked and kissing by a window. Fridtjof Joke with us about which photo we would be re-creating and I was happy to learn that it would be the four girls.
Blue team was me, Thomas, Lauren, and Johnny. Red team was Richard, Kelsey, Jeff, and Lars. Blue team gets to go first with taking our picture which was great, but we all got to go looking for clothes to wear to re-create the look of the picture at the same time which was so fun! We had 30 minutes to go down the street, it took us a bit to figure out that there were people sort of stage with clothes to wear, so the first house we went to we got a teen boy that answered and I’m pretty sure after explaining what we were doing, I asked if he had a closet we could check out! She totally let us in! Lady came in and wondered what we were doing but she ended up letting us come out back where her and her friends had thing for us to borrow! This continued until we had so much stuff that are arms were overflowing. We ended up with more than enough! We got to our spot to re-create the photo and got dressed and
took our five photos and chose one to print. I thought for sure we were going to win! As we gather to hear the results, we saw both red and blue teams photos. Red teams photo definitely looked better and as a result they won! I was actually really bummed about this since it meant no team advantage for us. I’m trying to remember that the team advantage has yet to actually help anyone win a challenge! Let's hope this week is no different for blue team. Next, Fridtjof tells us we are going to walk down to the house where the 4 girls lived and there would be another artistic adventure waiting for us! As we walked and found the house we immediately noticed a bunch of easels in the yard. I thought maybe we would be getting a sort of lesson on how to paint our own Munch portrait, but as we entered the yard we turned to our right and immediately saw a naked man standing there! Ahh!! I'm embarassed at first, but as we learn—we are doing a sort of "for fun" challenge and have 20 minutes to sketch using charcoal this naked man. I started at the head and worked my way down—I thought maybe I'd run out of room to draw the "whole" of him, but I had room- it felt weird at first, but as we sketched and it was quiet and we were int his gorgeous yard, it ended up being pretty calming and I felt grateful for that little "escape" from the reality of my worries about a team competition tomorrow. As we finished up, it was absolutely amazing how differently everyone took this little challenge. It was all so cool to see! We aren't sure where the portraits will go next, but maybe we will see them again—who knows! We ended the day with dinner off camera at the hotel followed by a bus ride back to Oslo. Tomorrow is competition day!
Day 36- Sunday May 29, 2016 (Day 2 filming Episode 6)
Today we started at 9:20am and took a short drive down the road to downtown Oslo where they filmed us walking into Oslo-it was so amazing! I love the way it smells here and the buildings are so neat. There are so many details in the trim and are clearly old and have a lot of history. I tried to take as many pictures as possible and I think the coolest part was getting to walk up to the palace. the flag was up, which Johnny taught me, meant the King & Queen are there! Next, we were brought to the theater in the park where Fridtjof told us what our individual challenge would be- to do a Scavenger hunt through Oslo and find characters that are placed all over the city using riddles based on Norwegian literature. I was feeling really nervous since I know nothing about Norwegian literature. Blue team got to go first, and it was hard- we seemed to figure out the riddles fairly quickly and the ones we had trouble with, we asked locals for help. We had a hard time finding some places, but we did all of the clues- as in we found them all. It was hard to know how we did. The other team went and we all ended at a Thai restaurant for lunch, so delicious and really great after walking all over Oslo in the drizzling rain. We were brought to a sort of garden/park for interviews then results. Fritdjof explains that red team will get a 1 minute advantage or 1 minute subtracted from their total time and I was so nervous I was shaking. Staying this week is so important to me, almost desperate feeling and when Fridtjof announces us as the winning team-I lose it, tears of joy and sadness, because it means our smaller group is getting smaller group is getting smaller in two days. I'm so relieved though and grateful for this win!! Next we are then to our new hotel for the night. They drop us off around a corner with our back packs on- (the first time we've had them on camera) and we walk to be filmed entering The Grand Hotel!! I can't believe we get to stay here! The lobby is full of fresh lilies and the smell is intoxicating. It reminds me of my mom a bit. They have us wait, but they've given me my own room for the 2 nights we will be here!! They film me entering my room and I can hardly wait to sleep in that bad! To celebrate our win, we all went out to a place called London, my first gay bar for karaoke and dancing! It was so much fun!! Tomorrow is a low key interview day!
Day 37- Monday May 30, 2016 (Day 3 Filming Episode 6)
We didn't have to meet until later so Thomas and I explored some of theOslo shopping that's near our hotel. I'm definitely considering getting Dan one of the Fjall Raven Backpacks that are so popular and last a lifetime.
We met at noon to drive to this amazing park and restaurant that overlooks Oslo- It ws so neat! Interviews are in the park. Thomas, Richard, and I were done first so they drove us back to the hotel. I found out about the spa and went immediately! I sat in the steam room and swam in the pool (the first one I've seen in Norway!) and it was glorious and relaxing. We went out to dinner at a cute little café and moved on and had a beer at cool roof top bar at our hotel with a great view of the city. We ended the night at a neat place called the Crow Bar which had so much excellent beer! This place totally felt like home. I kept looking at the beer choice and wondering what beer Dan would choose. He would love this place!
Day 38- Tuesday May 31, 2016 (Day 4 Filming Episode 6)
We didn't have to meet until noon for lunch with Martine and then we met later for driving to results. It was SO HOT today! We drove to another very nice park where we found out that Richard, Kelsey, and Lars all had to do a race with a quiz and a riddle they had to repeat back to Fridtjof. We were pretty nervous for them and as we stood there, Kelsey was the first to be safe, and then Fridtjof announce that Richard was safe- that meant that Lars was going home. I was so sad I started to cry. He is going to be greatly missed. After Lars said an emotional (for me anyway) goodbye to everyone, we sat around an incredibly hot fire cooking hot dogs. The view was amazing, however, the sun and heat from the fire made me feel like I was melting! Next, we drove back to the Grand Hotel to get our luggage and move to a new hotel. The Scandic Edderkoppen which stands for "Spider"! That's fun! When I got to the hotel lobby, I went to grab something from my bag and I started crying again when I found note from Lars on his Bluetooth speaker that he had put inside my bag. We were always listening to music from everyone's iPods on the speaker which sort of felt luxurious when you have no connection to the internet or entertainment on the road. He left it for us to keep using even though he's gone and it made me miss him even more! We had some time to get settled and we headed to dinner at a spot called Colonel Mustard. We met the crew there for dinner and drinks and sat at these beautiful outdoor seats under giant umbrellas. Then we moved on later to this cool place called Tilt where I learned to play shuffle board with JK! He's very good and takes it very seriously. Dan would love this place! I can't wait to teach him shuffle board when I get home. We walked back late and had a snack before bed. Looking forward to a day off in Oslo tomorrow!
Day 39- Wednesday June 7, 2016- Day off!!
Today was great! I slept in a bit and woke up to have breakfast with Thomas and Johnny then back to bed to rest awhile. We met for a quick lunch in the lobby and had to meet back later for dinner with the TVNorge people.
I went to get Dan's gift and then saw Johnny and Lauren at the park across the street from our hotel. I sat and chatted with them a bit and then got the urge to try and walk to Frogneparken! Wow! I really thought it was closer on the map than it was. It took me 40 minutes to walk there and I had to stop to
get some water. When I got there though it was so great! The park was massive and absolutely gorgeous! I took a ton of pictures and really felt moved by some of the statues that reminded me of my family. Some of them looked like parents and their kids as well as men and women that made me think of Dan and I. I'm missing him so much. I managed to find a shorter(ish) way home to the hotel where we all got "dolled" up for a fancy dinner out with TVNorge executives. Is this really my life!? We met everyone outside the hotel where we walked to a cute little outside area for drinks/cocktails before heading to dinner. Dinner was at this incredible waterfront place called Sol Siden(?). Our dinner was delicious, dessert too and our wine glasses were never empty! Wow! They brought us to the other side of the pier later for more drinks after dinner. I took it easy on the alcohol, but loved the company!