Change of pace

With the holiday halfway over, I’ve been feeling more rested, and was interested in doing something a little different today. The weather was really nice, and a coworker had previously suggested that I come with her to an animal shelter, and today we made it up there.

The shelter is called FOD, and it’s sort of on the southern edge of the city, about a 20 minute bus ride from the main bus terminal followed by a 15 minute walk more or less into the woods.

Once there, we got to take a couple of dogs out for a walk. They were very well behaved and were pros at begging for treats. After taking the dogs for a walk, we were introduced into some very cute puppies. All in all, it was a nice and relaxing afternoon, and walking the dogs was a nice change from going to the gym.

Norwegian Holidays

The Easter holidays start on Thursday.  Actually, for many Norwegians, the holiday started last Friday.  While around 90% of Norwegians technically belong to the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Norway, this is not an overly religious country.  For many Norwegians in Oslo, this long weekend is a chance for them to go skiing one last time before spring really arrives.  Plus, the holidays related to Easter guarantee a minimum number of days off.

In Norway, you only get a day off for a public holiday if you are normally scheduled to work on the day it falls.  This means that since Norway’s Constitution Day (May 17) falls on a Sunday this year, it’s not a real holiday to me – I have to be at work the Friday before and the Monday after.  It seems strange to me.  So this year, even though there are 10 public holidays, only 8 of them are actually days off for me, and it looks like next year will be even worse – 3 of the days fall on the weekend, as does January 1, 2011.  Darn.

For those of you who are curious, here are the public holidays for 2009:

1 Jan New Year’s Day. 
9 Apr
 Holy Thursday.
10 Apr Good Friday.
13 Apr Easter Monday.
1 May May Day.
17 May Constitution Day.
21 May Ascension.
1 Jun Whit Monday.
25-26 Dec Christmas.