I love Norway. I love the people and the country they live in. I have made a number of good Norwegian friends while studying in France. In fact, I was invited to stay with one for two weeks last summer. But, I will write more about that on another post.
On May 17th, the Norwegian’s celebrate their independence from their neighbor Sweden. In Norway, this day is typically starts with a Champagne breakfast with close friends and family and continues with celebrations throughout the day. There are parades and social events throughout the day. Apparently, it is also a day where people eat a lot of sweets and junk food. Children are allowed to eat as much ice cream as they want!
This year, my friend Stig invited me to a traditional Champagne brunch to celebrate! Stig celebrates his birthday with his nation and definitely has the best birthday for a Norwegian! He invited his Norwegians friends and friends that wish they were Norwegian (that would be me!) to celebrate with food and Champagne. The first thing that I noticed was the fact that everyone dressed up for the occasion. Girls were in nice dresses and men wore blazers with ties or bow-ties. It’s a stark difference from the American 4th of July celebrations which are casual and typically include a picnic.
Everyone was in high spirits and very proud of the holiday and their heritage. They waved their flag around, wore Norwegian flag pins, and were singing Norwegian folk songs. Despite it being finals period, people made an effort to bring foods that they eat at home- salmon, dried meats, Norwegian bread, brown cheese, and strawberries. Somehow I ended up being in charge of making the homemade waffles! There was also no shortage of Champagne- I was disappointed to stop after two glasses since I had to leave early to continue writing my thesis.
Here are some pictures of the festivities.
I was lucky to find typical Norwegian bread at the Boulangerie that morning. The Norwegians were very happy with my find and asked for the address!
Haugpølse is a sausage from a well known brand, Gilde, and it consists of cured meat from cattle, horse and sheep.