Thursday, December 22, 2011

What am I doing?

I used to keep journals and diaries when I was younger. It would go really well for the first few days, sometimes even weeks, but I would end up losing interest and forgetting about them. I am hoping that this blogging thing will be a different experience all together; one that will allow me to share my experiences with you (whoever YOU are) as well as documenting my travels and adventures.

For starters, I should point out that I always thought the idea of this new term “blogging” to be a bit silly. Who really has anything interesting enough to share with anybody who has access to the internet? Why do people want to share their personal lives with strangers online? Regardless, thanks to technology and twenty first century ideals, this is the way to do it. Also, I figure that blogging is the best way to share my travels; if you as the reader are genuinely interested, you can read what I have written but if you don't care, then you don't have to be subjected to my ramblings.

Okay, so why the title “from Caribou to Reindeer”? Well when I first went to set up this blog I had no name in mind so I had to pick something quickly and thats the first thing that I thought of. Also, caribou and reindeer are the same species but have the different names depending on where they are found in the world. In the North American north, they are called Caribou, whereas in Scandinavia and parts of Russia (and Santa's North Pole!), they are called Reindeer. So the title seems fitting since I am travelling from the land of Caribou to Reindeer!

Anyways, I mentioned travelling and adventures, but what am I actually doing? I received a scholarship to study for a semester at Harstad University-College in Harstad, Norway. This school term is from January 16 - June 16 '2012 and I will be learning Tourism and E-Commerce. The town has a population of around 25'000 and is situated about 250km above the Arctic circle. This means that when I first get there in the winter, I will have to get used to almost 24 hours of darkness!

I leave from Edmonton December 31 to spend New Years eve with with my best friend, Erin in Calgary. On New Years day I will fly from Calgary to Montreal to spend a week with my grandparents and family on my mom's side. It has been almost 2 years since I have visited so I'm excited! From there, on January 9th, I will hop on a plane which will make 2 stops in the USA (New York then Boston... I think) and then I will land in Reykjavik (Iceland) bright and early in the morning of the 10th. I will spend 3 days there, then make my way to Oslo, the capital of Norway, for another 3 days. From here I fly out on the 15th to be in Harstad for the first day of school! I know that I will be in Sweden for some skiing at some point and I hope to make it to different parts of Europe during my time abroad. Hopefully I will meet awesome people, eat weird food (putrefied shark meat, puffin and reindeer to name a few delicacies) and have epic adventures, so keep checking out this blog to see what I'm up to!

Harstad is where my school is and the yellowey dots are my stops along the way.