Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Gratulerer med dagen Norge! / Happy Birthday Norway!

17 May is like probably the most important day in Norway since it is the country's Constitution Day, which is the National Day of Norway.

The Constitution of Norway was signed at Eidsvoll on May 17 in the year 1814. The constitution declared Norway to be an independent kingdom in an attempt to avoid being ceded to Sweden after Denmark–Norway's devastating defeat in the Napoleonic Wars.

So for the birthday of my most beloved country in the world, here are a few Norwegian cards which I thought that thematically would be appropriate for today =)
In case you wanna read a bit more about the Norwegian's most important day of the year, take a look here - Understanding 17 May


First comes an official card which even though shows the Norwegian flag, was actually sent from Poland, but don't get me started on that now, let me tell you a few words about the flag instead :)
It was adopted on 13 July 1821, by a resolution by the Norwegian parliament, the Storting.

The idea for this flag belongs to Frederik Meltzer, Member of Parliament from Bergen. He got the idea of adding a blue cross to the Danish flag during a meeting in the parliament. The discussion on the flag circled around considerations about reflecting the past, that is the Danish colours, which enjoyed great popularity, and considerations that the union with Sweden should also be reflected in the flag. So we can say that the red and white came from the Danish flag, the blue from the Swedish. At the same time, the colour combination red, white, blue was also attractive to the Parliament because it reflected the colours of liberty, as in the flags of France, the USA, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.

here is that Polish stamp issued in 2009 for the World Post Day.

I have no idea how I obtained the following two cards (most probably a swap) - all I know is that I found them in the 2010 pile.

On both of the cards you can see a map of the country along with some beautiful nature scenes located in different parts of it (the one above actually shows views from the north of the country only).

The next map card - I received it twice....and funny thing is that both senders sent it like just a few days apart...what a telepathy!! :D
One was sent by Sissel and one by Cathrine - I can freely say my two most regular Norwegian contributors :))

Both Sissel and Cathrine have said on the cards that the map is a bit inaccurate - I don't know if it's cos its maybe an older edition or something...but still makes it a really nice map-card.

Among else it says that
- the country is a Constitutional Monarchy with a Parliamentary system of Government
- monetary unit is the Norwegian krone
- religion: Protestant
- main export: oil and gas, ships and offshore platforms, fish, paper
- capital: Oslo
- largest lake: Mjøsa
- highest mountain: Galdhøpiggen, 2469m
- average life expectancy: women - 80 years, men - 73 years  (what the hell are you doing to your men Norway?? or should I ask that the Norwegian women maybe? :P)
- national anthem: Ja, vi elsker dette landet

speaking of mountains, it reminded me of this thing I read yesterday - it is not the latest news, actually it is like more than a year old, but I still thought it may be worth sharing this article about the Future Library Project that is taking place in Norway :)

here are the two stamps that came along with these cards - the above one featuring the Revtangen, Klepp, Rogaland was issued in 2009 in a set of 6 Tourism stamps, while the one below was issued in 2011 in a set of three stamps for the Year of the Architecture.

For the end of this post I will share with you a small anecdote from my recent Spanish trip that is related to Norway :)

See, we were visiting Benidorm one day, and just as we parked the car, another car parked in front of us, and I don't know why I took a look, but something just got my attention and I realized the car was Norwegian! I couldn't really believe it and I just stood there waiting for the people to get out of the car in order to talk to them, in my terrible basic Norwegian! To make it worse, I was so excited that I couldn't even think of the simplest of words at the moment!! And I don't know who was more shocked, me, that I came across Norwegians at a random place in Spain, or them, that they came across someone at a random place in Spain who actually spoke Norwegian (or better said, had her attempts to do so :D) It was hilarious cos as I've probably mentioned before, spoken Norwegian is a nightmare to me, so not only they talked to me in Norwegian, they often had to translate in English what they had actually said cos my brain was duh? huh? what??!! Yeah, the joke's on me, I know, but frankly I am also proud of myself cos I didn't run away as I usually do when I have to talk in a language I am not fluent in (like Spanish or German), but on the whole contrary, I was waiting for them to get out of the car in order to exchange a few words.
They were an older and really lovely couple, so a big hug to them in case they ever come across this post and remember that clumsy girl in Benidorm who tried to talk to them in Norwegian :D

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