Monday, February 20, 2012

New Speaking Partners & Final Semester

Wow, I look bitchy when I'm watching TV

So I got a B on my Chinese oral exam, hallelujah! 

But there sure isn't any time for any rest and recreation, considering that the classes for the new semester started in the same week as the exam was being held - not to be recommended. I already feel a bit burned out, gah.

The schedule for this semester is pretty hectic, and even though I only have classes three days a week, the work load is pretty heavy, so I'm usually at the study hall early in the morning the days I don't have class.


It sure is nice to have Wictoria back around.

She spent a year in Japan while I was doing my first year of Chinese studies at the university of Oslo, and then I went to Beijing for six months right before she got back - so we've seen each other once in one and a half years. That's a long time considering that we studied Japanese together and were neighbors in Japan and close friends the final semester of Japanese studies.

But now I'm back and she's back, and for our final semesters at the uni we even have a class together!

And I've found a new speaking partner!

And she's from..

... Peru?

No, Aming is a hardcore Chinese chick. And by hardcore, I mean as in heavy metal, head-banging hardcore. These photos do not do justice, I know. But she's pretty saucy with her long black hair and leather jacket!

Aming was of great help when I was studying for my oral exam, and when I'd survived it I wanted for us to meet up and do something fun and not exam-related for a change, so I went to her flat at Kringsjå Student Village, also commonly referred to as Communist Russia, as I used to live there myself before I went to Japan.

Looking so cute and innocent

Having found Aming, she really is a catch. She herself is studying Norwegian at the University of Oslo, so she understands the challenges of studying a foreign language, and we're able to help each other. Anyway, it's nice to get to speak Chinese!

Aming made lunch for us

Thai dessert in the front
- sticky rice and jackfruit that has been
wrapped in banana leaves 
and steamed

She has colored her hair red since this photo was taken,
and now is a sexy red-haired vixen

OMG snooze!!

I will never recommend studying languages at university level, if someone wants to actually be able to use a language in a daily life setting, anyway

I can barely order food in a Chinese restaurant, but in class we translate classical Chinese texts from before "Christ" was "born" and also stuff like passages of law regulations.


Good to know that after four years and two bachelor degrees I'm still good for nothing!

I've also got myself a couple of Thai speaking partners, so I can practice speaking Thai and they can practice speaking Norwegian.



Looks like a restaurant, right?

But it's not,
it's at Nampueng's house!

Lap Nua
- A spicy Thai Lao meat salad

Yesterday I made wheat buns for the first time, in "celebrations" of the Norwegian tradition Fastelavn - one of the obscure traditions where Norwegians do or eat something particular without really knowing why.

Anyway, you fill them with whipped cream and jam, and one bite and you feel sick already.

The buns turned out pretty good, they almost looked bakery-bought.

And that, on the other hand, made me really wonder why bothering with spending hours making them at all. So, no more bun-baking!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Time is Running Out..

.. for Snowball

Yesterday I went to my mom's house to pay a visit to the dying one.

I got Snowball when I was nine years old (and I didn't even know about the Simpsons at that age, so I don't know where I came up with the name), though the past few years he's mostly been referred to as "the grumpy ol' fella" - and who can blame him, really - living in a household with three squealing women.

He has been healthy throughout his fourteen-year-old life.

A couple of weeks ago he disappeared, and after a couple of days mom found him hidden away in a room in the house. Mom took him to the vet and it turned out that he had suffered from a hemorrhage in the brain. He is blind and not eating on his own, so mom feeds him. 

A little grumpy and frail

He is weak and skinny, but he is purring and seemingly not in too much of a pain. Mom doesn't have the heart to put him to sleep, and will probably put it off as long as it doesn't seem like he's suffering too much. 

I don't blame her. It's easy to say "just put the old cat to sleep, and take it out of it's misery already" - but I think it's both a cultural thing - believing that animals too have a desire to live, and who are you to decide whether or not it should live? - and of course a selfish point of view: how can you kill a family member who's still purring and responding and showing it's personality?

She will do anything for that cat and has taken him to the vet several times the past few weeks. 

Poor old fella

Edit: On Sunday February 12th mom came home from work and found Snowball all curled up and snug in my little sister's old bed, where he had finally found his peace.