I’ve been in England for about 3 months now, and I had yet to travel outside of the country. When I was a first-timer in Europe a few years back, I traveled a ton. Looking back on that period of my life, I definitely had more time to spare for travel. This time around, I work a full time schedule. I talked to my one boss about the frustration with my lack of current exploration. She genuinely wanted me to go out into the world and said to just check the cheapest flight and book it. With me being the indecisive person I am, it still took me weeks to decide on a country. I kept switching back and forth every other day until I would just quit and decide to stay put. One day on my lunch break I was looking into Norway. My fellow intern noticed my research and grew curious. She told me she had previously been to Norway but wouldn’t mind going back. I immediately shouted, “COME WITH ME!” That was the growing stage of our Norway idea, and just a couple short weeks later, we landed in Oslo. It was just the two of us and we rented a car, as we decided this was the most efficient way to see everything on our list in two days. Plus, our flight was only £19 roundtrip, so we decided to treat ourselves with an easy means of transportation.
We started in Oslo and drove around 5 hours to Aurland. We stayed there for one night and then hit the road again the next morning to Vøringfossen, which was my favourite part. We drove up the mountain to see the waterfall from the top, then went back down to walk the trail to the base of the waterfall. It was a bit of a shock when we saw the trail – it looked like a path a human shouldn’t take, almost as if the country of Norway was playing a joke on the tourists. But rest assured, there were trail markers and I figured we may as well try while we’re here. We were both just expecting a pretty straightforward stroll because everyone said, “Oh yeah, it’s just about a 30 minute walk from parking.” They failed to mention the climbing, crawling, and exertion involved. For us, a 30 minute walk was a 50 minute drag, half of the time being on our hands and knees. But alas, we made it, alive (though I could tell my friend wanted to kill me for making us do this.)
After we took all the scenery in from the waterfall, we plugged the airport into the GPS. Our flight was scheduled to take off at 9:45, and the GPS estimated our arrival at 9:05. This worried me a bit since we had to refill the gas tank and find the return spot for the rental car AND go through security. That’s when my body went into emergency mode and I basically floored it all the way to Oslo (about a 5 hour drive.) Do not try this at home. The roads are extremely curvy, the streets aren’t well lit, the weather conditions can be dangerous, and I probably have 12 speeding tickets waiting for me in the mail. But despite all of that, we just made our flight in time, sweaty and gasping for air.
When I went back to work, I showed my boss the photos from our trip. She was in awe and was impressed with all we got to see in the short span of 2 days. I definitely did feel accomplished after this trip. There’s something about completing a successful adventure that makes you feel on top of the world. I was craving nature and a change of scenery, and Norway fit that mold perfectly. It’s refreshing to remember how big the world is and how much there still is to see. Sometimes the city can swallow you whole, and even though I love the city life, we all occasionally need a bit of an escape.