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Expats in Oslo or Norway??

(3 Posts)
mygreeneyedboy Wed 24-Jun-15 14:48:53

We're moving to Oslo or Akershus in August - DP is Norweigan, DS will 19/20months, and he is being brought up bilingual. I can speak very limited Norwegian - my vocab is better than grammar. I probably won't be working when we arrive, or for the first year.

I would love any type of tips, support, stories - or friends?!

vikinglights Thu 25-Jun-15 09:07:02

not in oslo so not sure how much will be relevant but here goes,

learning the language is important (also frustrating etc.), yes pretty much everyone can speak english and you'll get by with english but it is harder to really get into the community if you have to wait for people to speak english to you. However beware, when you think you're finally getting to grips with the language you'll meet someone who speaks a different dialect and be completely nonplussed.

I have a friend from Serbia who wholeheartedly threw herself into language learning and got very good very quickly (at standard bokm�l) but ended up completely baffled by her daughter who was learning the local dialect in kindergarten.

It is very normal for kids to go to kindergarten and less usual to be a stay at home parent, so you will probably find there are less groups to go than you are used to from the UK (although again this may be different in oslo), and the groups that exsist may have a high percentage of foreigners. �pen barnehager (open kindergartens) are usually drop in playgroup type arrangements.

Other foreigners can be very supportive and a good help in negotiating a new country but sometimes other foreigners can reinforce a kind of 'the trouble with norway' mentality that can suck the joy out of life a bit.

hobbies/groups etc. are a good way to get involved, the local sports club (Idrettslag) if you're sporty, a monthly 'knitting cafe' if thats your thing.

I've got to get back to work now but I'll come back if I think of more things

mygreeneyedboy Fri 26-Jun-15 19:52:53

Sorry vikinglights for the late reply - I wanted to get onto the laptop so I could reply properly! Thank you so much for the detailed response!!

I will try and do a course to learn Norwegian, but it costs a fair amount... Luckily DP has a fairly Oslo like accent having spent the first 6 years of his life there (as well as his parents being from there) before moving up to near Kristiansund. I'm getting to grips with different dialects but still struggling to tell the difference between Swedish and Danish and strong Norwegian dialects!!

Hopefully I will try and do some exercise. The Knitting Cafe is simply the best idea!! I am just learning to knit, and I know how popular it is in Norway. So it's definitely my thing!

I've found out I'm expecting DC2, in Feb, which is why I can't plausibly apply for a job.. as well as the fact I want to do Human Resources, which most jobs need Norwegian for as well as a Masters and experience (neither I have!!) I'm simply a new graduate with little work experience!!

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to help! smile x

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