Coming home on monday

Okay peeps!
A whole lot has happened since last i updated (like four weeks ago lol). First of all, to explain the headline; we left Ghana two weeks ago due to the lack of water in the whole region of Winneba/South-Central. The water had been on and off actually ever since we came, but the last three weeks in Ghana, there was rarely anything. Of course this was annoying, not being able to flush the toilet (as all of us had “travelers stomach”), taking a proper shower, doing the dishes, washing clothes etc. Basic things you need water to do. But we didn’t really think that much about it as our minds was set to “Africa-mode”. Then, after a few days of travelling, we came back ready to continue our kindergarten-practice, we found out that the river which is the main source of water supplying the whole region, is almost dried out, and the water won’t be back until rain season starts by the end of march/beginning of april. Wait whaaaaat? So we e-mailed back and forth with our teachers trying to find the best solution, as this is a potentially dangerous situation. I say dangerous, because there is a certain risk of epidemic outbreaks such as cholera and Ebola when the hygiene and food-handling is no longer at its best. Especially for us working with children who are all around touching things, and also the fact that we have a completely different resistance to these kind of diseases and would much easier get sick.

We were all really bummed out about this situation, but our teachers was clear on the fact that they did not want us to stay in a potentially dangerous area. So then we had about five days to get everything packed, talk to our schools, fix papers at the university, and say our final good-byes to everyone. Jules and I booked flight tickets to Kenya like three days before we left, and we arrived in Nairobi February 29th. We spent two days here before we took the night bus to Mombasa and spent yet another week by the pool chillin’ and enjoying life.

As I write this, we’re back in Nairobi for the weekend before our flight leaves for Oslo (well, Nairobi->Dubai->Oslo) late Sunday evening. This whole trip as been so crazy with us having to postpone our tickets because of delayed visas from the embassy, great weeks in between with beer-drinking, kindergarten, beach, party, amazingly awesome people, and now having to interrupt our stay because of this whole shabang. I was really bummed out and upset when we figured all of this out, but now I feel that I’m really ready to come home. Despite everything that’s happened on this trip, I would never EVER want to be without the experience. I don’t regret one bit on going, as I’ve learned so incredibly much about other cultures, myself, and how to embrace my job as a teacher the best way possible when I get to that point.

– Kristin


So this is how we “showered” and flushed the toilets for three-four weeks


For the whole shabang of water it was only like 6kr.


At the airport in Accra, enjoying the last Club beer :((


Flying in over Nairobi looks kinda like home


And then we came to Mombasa, and had this view


We’re on a boat mothafuckaaa


And we found paradise


Now I can die in peace


The Kindergarten

Good afternoon!

First two weeks of kindergarten is over, and I am left with so many new impressions. Even though we only have four hours there a day, I am exhausted when I come home. Partially because Ghanaians start their day way too early. Most of them wake up around 4am to prepare for school and work. There are roosters and goats walking around everywhere, and they also start their day around that time.  So normally, I wake up twice before 6am trying to ignore loud music, radio, roosters, goats and drums just to mention some. The kindergarten that Julie and I go to is about 5km away, so up to this point we have taken a taxi there back and forth (it’s only like 5ghc/10nok). However, last week we bought ourselves bikes! They were not too expensive and they came with a nice basket and locks. So now, we are not only the “obroni’s” in town, but the cycling ones as well. And yes, we get a lot of looks from people. We went out yesterday, and met so many who said they’ve seen us biking around on campus. Embarrassing enough. Anyways, 5km each way = 10km a day, four times a week. Cycling 40km, (at least) every week for a month will hopefully get my legs and butt in shape. There are no gears on the bike either, so it is quite heavy.

But back to the kindergarten. They do everything different from us. There is nothing to compare other than it being children and adults together in a restricted area. In this private kindergarten they have Nursery 1 & 2 (1-2 yrs, and 3yrs), KG 1 & 2 (4 yrs and 5-6 yrs). The first week I decided to try all the different classes to see how they do it and what the children learn. Surprisingly enough it is in Nursery 1 where they cane and punish the children the most. These are 1-2 year olds who have to sit and count to 5, repeat the teacher and do parkobling and show they know kardinalprinsippet (don’t know the English terms). In Norwegian kindergartens, they start doing this at age 3-4, give and take.  In KG2 (Kindergarten 2), 5-year olds sit and do math in books and on the blackboard. This does not seem too bad, but again, compared to Norwegian standard, it is insane. If I were to write down everything I see and feel after this week, I would write a 500-page book.

With all this said, it really is interesting to be here, and the woman who runs the kindergarten is super sweet. She has a completely different view of things; it is almost as if she is much more Norwegian in her thinking. The children are also nice and fun to be with, except for the fact that they do not know how to play with each other without biting, kicking, punching, pulling, throwing stones and so on… They are also really fascinated by our skin and hair. Not to mention my hamsa hand/lotus flower tattoo. I don’t really think they understand what it is.  They keep telling me I have to wash my arm, lol.

Other than this, we’re slowly getting used to things here. Going to the market, biking through all the honking in the traffic, greetings, what we actually have to pay for things etc. I’m not really thinking that much about how it looks around here anymore; getting more used to that too. So things are getting better and better! Tomorrow it will be three weeks since we left home. That’s totally crazy. It feels much longer, but still. Time flies, and suddenly we’ll be back home where everything is the same.

So long peeps!

– Kristin


Culture shock

It is weird to think about the fact that we are staying here for three more months. Everything is so different here. When we go to the kindergarten in the morning, we see people standing naked in the streets washing themselves, brushing their teeth, cooking, going to the “toilet”, cleaning the schoolyards and so on. They sell everything from shacks; there are barely any actual stores or buildings. There is trash and garbage everywhere, and some days, like today, they gather it up and they burn it. It is so much smoke that it hurts my eyes, and it scares me to think of all the toxins and other crap that we breathe in.

Washing clothes is something I have postponed until now, as we have to do it by hand, and because of all the smoke. I feel like I have rashes or something that itches my skin all the time. My stomach has not been on game since I left home, and washing my hair thoroughly is close to impossible, as our shower is only drippling a few drops.

Eating is difficult as we do not know what is safe to eat and not. Therefore, it is a gambling game eating vegetables and fruits that are not cooked or have peel to take off. Most dinners are vegetarian, like pasta or rice with a vegetable sauce, these are not too bad. Breakfast is cracker bread with raspberry jam. Maybe noodles or more cracker breads in between.

It feels like I have been away from home for half an eternity, even though it only is 12 days. This is what happens when nothing is like home. Cultural shock. Of course, I expected everything to be different, but I thought this place would be a bit more “city” than what it is, as we were told, “Winneba is a cozy little town and provides everything you need”. Words cannot explain the differences. There are no café’s, but a few “restaurants”. A decent cup of coffee? Forget it.

Now things probably sound horrifically bad down here, and sometimes, to be honest, it is pretty bad. Nevertheless, all the nice people who live here, and especially the people who work here at Manuel’s weigh up for a lot of it. We have learned how to cook tilapia (a kind of fish) on the grill with a special, Ghanaian tomato sauce on the side. We play table tennis with the guys here (they are so much better than us), and we hang out with Manuel’s children. There is also a lot of beer-drinking going on. The six of us go well together, and I am glad we do. I am also certain things will get even better when we get more used to this culture and how things work here.

– Kristin


Martine, Julie, Christian and Linn



Martine making some art


Dusting off the ping-pong skills

A weekend in Accra

Akwaabe everyone (welcome in fanti),

Now we’ve had to days here in Accra, trying to put on a nice tan. Not as easy as it should be, cuz it is rather cloudy. Of course that’s not the only thing we’ve been doing. There’s also been a lot of nice food and drinks. Okay now I sound super shallow. We went out to a bar yesterday after many taxi drives. First we went to this tapas restaurant that we’d been recommended. Before I say anything else, let me say that Accra is a city with H U G E differences. The side we’ve been at the most is rather poor, not fancy-looking at all. This restaurant we’d been recommended was in the new Accra. The fancy part. The part with tall buildings, asphalt streets, clean streets and orgasm-worthy nice cars everywhere. So, as we didn’t know about this side of the city, we dressed like we did the first night. Not looking like rich-bitch obronis (white people in fanti). Long story short, I’ve never in my life felt more underdressed at a restaurant. We weren’t allowed going in because we didn’t have closed shoes and Christian had shorts on, and not long pants. So we left in vain. Or pain. Whatever is worse…

Anyhow, we went to another restaurant, hidden in a mansion in the middle of the more poor part of the city. Super nice food, but we would never have found it if the guy at the tapas restaurant didn’t suggest it. We have pretty much only been eating western food while being here in Accra. We eat so much local food in Winneba, so we feel it’s okay to have some known dishes as well.

The bar we went to after all the taxi drives yesterday is called “The Republic”, and is located at the main street called Oxford Street (which is NOTHING like the one in London btw). We’d been there the night before, and it was fun but rather quiet. But yesterday, my oh my… There was people everywhere in the streets, in the bar, sitting, dancing, smoking and drinking. One more thing I’ve never felt more in my life, was as white as I felt last night. The locals were moving and dancing like only Africans do, and to the local music. But when the DJ started playing songs from Avicii, Deorro, Beyoncé and Cheryl Cole, that’s when we started moving. LOL, ROFL, OMG. The night ended well around 2.30am, so I would say it was a good night out. Julie, Linn and I started talking to other locals and some Lebanese guys. So yeah, we felt pretty cool. Or something…

This was a long and messy post! Sorry about that. I’m going to do some more tanning now, trying to get more obroni (black in fanti).

Kindergarten starts on Monday, so we’re all pretty excited about that. Most likely, I won’t post anything before that.

– Kristin


How everyone carries stuff here. Manuel said he would teach us how to do it.


Christian and Martine chillin’ in the pool


Out and about at the fancy restaurant. (Julie, Christian and Anna)


Delish quinoa salad with beets and chévre. Yum


The mansion was HUUUUGE


And located in this area.


I’ve got 42 mosquito bites only on my legs. And yes I’m on malaria pills, using mosquito repellent and wearing long pants. Still my legs look like this. F***!

Ghana 2016

Hello from Ghana!

We arrived at Manuel’s Guesthouse in Winneba yesterday, and this place is pretty great. Ghana so far seems to me to be hectic, people are selling stuff everywhere (and I mean everywhere) and everyone is carrying something on their heads (I’m learning that by the time I get home, looks so convenient). Ghanaians are just about the nicest and friendliest people I have ever met (maybe after Cambodians, but its damn close). They might seem a bit angry or annoyed, idk, but the minute you start talking to them they bring up a big smile and wants to know how they may help.

So what are we doing on this three-month stay here? Besides getting super tanned and integrated in the Ghanaian society, we are doing kindergarten practice here instead of freezing Norway. It is mainly a collaboration between HiOA (my school in Norway) and the University of Education in Winneba. Today we met up with our contact person here in Winneba, Nana, and some of the other teachers and directors of the university. We saw the campus and went to see the different kindergarten that we are visiting during our stay here. Two of them are basically in the backyard of the guesthouse, while the last one is about a 15-minute bike ride away. Julie and I thought we would go to that one, as long as we get bikes to get there! In week nine or ten we are changing the kindergarten anyways, so that we can try different places.

Tomorrow we are going to Accra for the weekend. Staying at (what seems like) a super nice hotel with a pool and workout room, and not to mention air condition! The weather here has been so so so humid, which makes the temperature seem even worse… But oh well, there’s a reason to why we are here!

I’m going to post more pictures of our room and this place later, but there’s a few things that need to be bought and fixed first. It’s kind of surreal that we’re finally here and about to start everything. There was so much trouble with our visas and our flight had to be postponed. But now we’re here, and it will be great to start everything.

Stay tuned!

– Kristin

(PS: click the pictures to see them in a bigger size)

“Du må lære deg å stresse ned”

… Var det jeg fikk høre fra legen min før jul. Jeg bestilte legetime fordi jeg var oppgitt og fortvilet og lurte på hva som var galt med meg siden jeg hadde en hjertefrekvens på sikkert 320 døgnet rundt, ble skikkelig pizzatryne, sov dårlig, hadde en fæl tendens til å få blackouts hvis jeg reiste meg for fort og morgendusjen endte med å svime av. 

Dette var som sagt rett før jul, jeg jobbet ræva av meg for å få pengene til å rekke rundt (det gjør jeg jo hele året egentlig), hadde siste innspurt på skolen og samtidig skal jeg også smile og være fornøyd og helst ikke vise mine svake sider. Jeg har alltid vært en person som foretrekker å ha litt for mye å gjøre enn litt for lite, så det burde jo ikke høres ut som et problem. MEN når dagene varer fra halv åtte om morgenen til halv elleve på kvelden og man må hoppe fra en ting til en annen uten å få gjort de 110%, så er dette et problem for “flinke piker” som meg selv. Videre så resulterer dette i dårligere helse, en forferdelig selvfølelse, følelsen av utilstrekkelighet, og slik jeg sitter nå. Ferdig med alle arbeidskrav på skolen, men klarer ikke å roe meg ned. “Deilig å ikke ha noe å gjøre!” sa jeg til Eirik i stad. Joda… I et par timer, men så blir jeg rastløs. Følelsen av å fri er liksom ikke der. Jeg får dårlig samvittighet fordi jeg burde gjøre noe, ikke bare ligge på sofaen. Ro i kropp, sjel og sinn er på en merkelig måte en fremmed setning. Bare for å ha sagt det, så var det ikke noe galt med meg annet enn at jeg var/er altfor stressa (takkskarrufaenmeghaErna). 

Det at jeg er mindre avslappet nå enn da jeg hoppet i fallskjerm for første gang, er vel bekymringsverdig nok i seg selv….Image

Jeg skylder delvis på Regjeringen og Lånekassen. Hvordan forventes det at jeg skal kunne leve på studielånet som er på 7080,- i mnd når jeg betaler 5500,-  i husleie og har faste utgifter på 1100,-? Man trenger ikke ha doktorgrad (egentlig ikke mer enn grunnskolenivå) i matte for å skjønne at det ikke går. Med mindre man er spiseforstyrret, og ikke trenger mer enn 200,- i mnd på mat da. Da kan det gå rundt, men det la jeg fra meg for lenge siden. Det er på høy tid at regjeringen får på seg lesebrillene og ser sammenhengen mellom frafall, husleie og studielån snart. Er det rettferdig at Oslos studenter som i gjennomsnitt betaler 9712 kr i mnd i husleie får like mye utbetalt i studielån hver måned som studenter i Bergen og Stavanger som i gjennomsnitt betaler 7572 kr i mnd? (SSB, 2011) Så lenge regjeringen ikke klarer å dekke de 20% med studentboliger som er målet engang, må de finne en annen løsning. Jeg tror ikke jeg var den eneste som jublet høyt da den rødgrønne regjeringen i siste liten la fram forslaget om 11 måneder med studielån  istedenfor dagens 10. Men vi har det jo så forbaska bra, Erna? Så det er ikke nødvendig å investere i «morgendagens helter». Vår siste dag på barnehagelærerutdanningen er satt til 17. juni. Det er drøye to uker vi ikke får jobbet, men som vi er på skolen og har eksamen. Hvorfor i alle dager skal vi ikke få tildelt studielån den måneden?? De tre ukene vi har mellom eksamenene i mai som HiOA har beregnet at vi skal bruke på å lese til eksamen, de må jeg bruke til å jobbe så mye som mulig, fordi jeg må ha 7000,- ekstra til juni, og det samme skjer jo i eksamenskjøret som vi har i juni fordi jeg må ha penger til husleie og leve i juli. Jeg kjenner jeg får vondt i magen bare av å tenke på det, og dette er ikke noe som skjer før om 3-4 måneder en gang! Alle snakker om at studietiden er den beste som finnes, og at jeg må nyte den mens jeg kan. Nyte? Dette?? Jeg GLEDER MEG til å bli ferdig med studiene slik at jeg får en fast jobb med stabil inntekt, vite når jeg har fri og når jeg skal på jobb. Ikke ligge våken om nettene og rive av meg neglbåndene i bekymring og frustrasjon. Ja okei, så er jeg en “flink pike” som er langt over gjennomsnittet avhengig av å vite hvor mye penger jeg har å bruke, når jeg får de, litt alt eller ingenting når det gjelder egen prestasjon, men allikevel. Nå høres det ut som jeg har det helt forferdelig og at jeg sulter ihjel, men det gjør jeg jo ikke. Jeg har en jobb jeg stortrives i, går på et studie jeg synes er kjempe spennende, har en samboer jeg elsker herfra til evigheten og familie og venner man bare kunne drømme om. Det jeg ønsker meg, det er muligheten til å ta det mer med ro, ha muligheten til å fokusere mer på studiene, og ikke måtte trenge å vurdere og konte eksamen når den tid kommer. For slik ting er nå, så er oddsen for at jeg tyr til det dessverre skummelt stor. 

Så ja, legen min har vel rett i at jeg må stresse ned for ikke å ende opp med å dø av hjertekarsykdommer (ja det går faktisk an å dø av stress) i en alder av 21 år, men det er litt vanskelig å stresse ned når jeg har etthundreogørteogførti ting som må gjøres og ordnes og passes på. 

Jeg burde vel egentlig leve etter tatoveringen min og prøve å si “ingen bekymringer”

Så derfor lurer jeg, Erna. Er det for mye å be om “Nye ideer og bedre løsninger” for oss studenter? 

Det var månedens utblåsning. Takk for meg. 

 – Kristin



Ordet klump må nesten være det mest negative ladde ordet jeg vet om… Det kommer ingenting positivt med det ordet. Forresten, hvis ikke du liker ordet “klump” eller å lese helt meningsløse innlegg, så kan du like gjerne stoppe å lese nå og finne på noe bedre å gjøre med dagen din. Hvis du på den andre siden har det samme hatet for “K”-ordet som meg, eller en eller annen bisarr forkjærlighet for det, så værsågod å les videre.Da kan det være at du blir lei deg, men det er ikke noe jeg vil stå til ansvar for. Internett er fritt, og man kan ytre seg om omtrent hva man vil.
Men tilbake til klump; tenk over det. Hvilke sammenhenger med ordet klump kan du komme på som er positivt? Selvfølgelig, er lommeboken din så full av penger at den er en eneste stor klump, så er jo ikke det akkurat negativt. Og taco da. Noen fortalte meg en gang at taco betyr klump på et eller annet språk. Og taco er sånn ca det beste i verden etter vårruller og sushi.

Men hva er det første du tenker når du hører ordet “klump” eller “klumper”? Klumper i suppa? Klumpfot? Klump i magen? Fettklump? Han feite professoren i “The Klumps”? Hvis du googler ordet “klump” eller “klumper”, så får du ikke opp noe annet enn negative ting om klumper i pelsen til katten eller klumper i brystene og på penis.

Skjønner du hva jeg mener?Image

Klumpfot. Stakkars. Image

Jeg la meg med klump i magen og brystet igår, og våknet med det igjen idag. Why? Ingen større grunn enn at jeg lurer på om jeg skal orke å male hele leiligheten med en gang, og hvilken farge jeg skal ha på listene, karmene og i taket. Tenk om jeg ved en feiltagelse hadde kjøpt gammel klumpete maling som gjorde at jeg ville fått stygge klumper på veggene og i taket?! Det er egentlig bakgrunnen for hele dette innlegget om de jævla klumpene.

Så for å oppsummere:
INGEN VIL HA KLUMPER. De er kun i veien og har ingenting godt for seg. Akkurat som dette innlegget. Men nå lå jeg våken så lenge, og trengte å få uttrykt mitt hat for klumper. Hvis du har lest så langt ned, så synes jeg nesten synd på deg og foreslår at du tar noen virkelige tak i livet ditt så du slipper å kaste det bort på å lese en “Å-blogg” på en så fin torsdag som denne.

Bare fordi jeg ikke gidder å ta bilde av meg selv her jeg sitter i den røde morgenkåpen min og med brillene på nesetippen, så kan du få se et bilde fra hvor solbrent jeg ble den ene dagen i Stryn. Det yter nesten rettferdighet for hvor misfornøyd jeg er nå og hvor mye jeg hater klumper.


















Takk for meg.

– Kristin

South-Africa pt 1

So as most of you know I was in South-Africa with my dads side of the family. The occation was our grandmas 75th birthday. We had an amazing trip together, and I’d love to do it all again if I could. We started of in Sibuya Forrest Camp in the Eastern Cape, a couple of hours drive from Port Elizabeth. We arrived late night, and came to an amazing camp, with amazing staff and amazing food. Since we were as many as 15 travelling all together, we’d rented the whole place. Before we left, I imagined that we would go on a safari like Christian and I did when we were in Africa about a year ago (sleep in tents on thin madrasses, eat of tin plates and make food in a truck), but nooo. This was luxury safari at its best! The “tents” had a full bathroom, beds with duvet covers, leaning chairs etc etc. Of course I didn’t mind, I was just a bit flabbergasted when I saw the tents. Maybe I’ll upload a movie later so you can see for yourselves. We had two nights and one whole day there to go on gamedrives (safari, see animals etc). We saw many different animals, and a whole lot of amazing nature scenes. We ate amazing food, had a free bar (wops!) and our rangers (and the rest of the staff) were the best!

After amazing days in Sibuya, we went on to Knysna where we were to spend christmas. It was about a six hours drive to Knysna, and that place was also pretty amazing! We rented that whole place too, so we didn’t have to care too much about being quiet and not making too much noise. We had five whole days there, and they were spent shopping, one day out on a boat, chilling, and of course christmas eve. The only downside about spending christmas in Africa, is that it doesn’t feel like christmas at all. NO christmas spirit. Oh well. We celebrated christmas when we came home instead : )

All in all, it was a great vacation filled with love, good conversations, laughs and a bit more love. This was a huge summary, and I’ll post some pictures now, and some later. Thank you all for making this a memorable vacation, and a huge thanks to grandma Judy, who made this all possible<3


– Kristin

I was lost, but now I’m found

As the heading says, after leaving London I was completely lost. London was my plan for two years, and as I was accepted to all of my uni choices, I didn’t even consider anything else. So coming home, not knowing what to do at all, I felt pretty lost. I had no idea what so ever what to do with my life. I do not regret leaving London at all, but coming home without any further plans was rather difficult.

After a while of not knowing what to do, just working and not being particularly happy with my life, I started working at SFO (“After School Club” don’t know the english word better) I started getting my pieces back together. I love children, and I love working with them. It gives me so much more than what my job at Meny does (no offence guys). So after reading around and about quite a lot, I’ve landed on the choice of pedagogy. I’ll apply for (sorry don’t know the english terms) childrens pedagogy, specialist pedagogy and pre-school teacher. I think this is a really good choice for me, as I’ve already said, love children and working with them. Also I have a lot of personal experiences on this area, which I think might come in handy. I do believe that it’s important to get an education and a job where you not just enjoy working, but also get to use your full potential which you’ve earned during your education, and also the school of life.

Now, I’m not 100% sure that I’ll be accepted to either of these classes, but my grades are good enough, and if I’m not, well then I’ll travel some more. I miss that.
So that’s my plan for now. I’ll start 2013 by taking some classes to improve my grades from High School (VGS), and travel a little bit, and then hopefully start my education in august.


Just a little update for those who might care : )

– Kristin

Vanity Studios Photoshoot

Here are the pictures from the photoshoot I did at Vanity Studios in London on the 26th of september! Eight out of ten are in B&W, because I think that looked way better, and also I’m a sucker to Black&White.

It was a fun shoot to do, and I would love to do one again if I get the opportunity 😀

As for the whole blogging thing… I love writing and the feedbacks I get is great, but now that I’m home, I don’t really have that much to write about.. Maybe I’ll come up with something extraordinary to write about! Use my brain for once. Haha oh well, we’ll see what I’ll end up with.

– Kristin