Norway reopened completely…

But we have led almost normal lives for the past few months already!

A big announcement was made last Friday: Norway would reopen completely as of the next day at 4 PM. I was happy because it would mean not having to wear the mask at work (it’s hard to run with it!), being allowed in the bars after midnight (we had to be « registered » before that time, even though it was open until 3 AM as usual) and being allowed to… dance! I particularly missed that part.

I went out and quickly realized that after one year and a half of ordering drinks from a QR code and application, I had forgotten that you need to actually go to the bar to order AND wait for your drinks there. Luckily, the Viking was working at the bar that night so he reminded me of all that. It was a bit weird because it wasn’t crowded, but people were yelling all the time « Gratulerer med dagen », which means happy birthday, or more exactly congratulations with the day. A celebratory marking, then. It seemed strange to me since compared to most countries, we have been living quite well and « normally », being able to get out, meet friends and family easily, with just minor restrictions and recommendations.

In Oslo, the police described Saturday night as an equivalent to what usually happens on New Year’s Eve, with a lot of craziness, young people smashed and fights. In Bergen it was quieter fortunately, but the club Rick’s, located in the city center, saw giant lines form outside despite being already full (and having communicated on it since the day before). You can see pictures here, and it’s quite impressive! It made me wonder why hundreds of people would deliberately stay in line in the cold for hours without any hope of getting inside a club, but the human’s mind is full of mystery.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Norway is also easing the travel restrictions, which will make it easier for people to come visit (finally!) and go around in the world. Norway hasn’t been affected so much by the pandemic and despite heavy measures being taken at times, we were lucky and could lead normal lives. I hugged, I partied, I worked and, when it was possible, traveled to France to see my loved ones. We’re also reaching a vaccination rate that is very high, with a majority of people over 15 years old who got their two doses already. I guess that compared to countries like France, where people don’t trust their government or, sometimes, science, Norwegians are quite easy-going, trusting and able to follow rules. Although drunk Norwegians are not the best to be around, but that will be for another article.

This final step of reopening, or « phase 4 of the reopening plan » to sound more official, means that we can see some light in the future for the other countries, with the hope that we can help countries with little access to the vaccine to get more doses and reach better their population. It’s a group effort after all, we can do it! But only as a team.

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