• Dom

Flavors of Easter: Toboggans and Penguins

It's supposed to be spring and yet us Bergen folks have been drowning in a cold brew of rain, snow and hale. On the upside, the kids managed to have a couple of snow days, so they got to eat snow, make snowballs and go sledding down the neighborhood slopes on their toboggans.

COVID is still around and slowly but surely, people are getting vaccinated. My sighs of relief have been plentiful the past couple of days knowing that close family and friends already got their shots. And while I have yet to see the light at the end of our own vaccination tunnel, it's still a comfort to be told that said tunnel indeed has said end. It's just rearing closer toward Christmas than summer.

Still, lots to be thankful for. Norway may have come out of 2020 with some very deep bruises and an unemployment rate not seen since the second world war, but it has managed to keep itself out of the bloody trenches. Our lockdowns have only really been partial and life has, to some extent, been allowed to resume as normal (and by that, I mean, socially distant and with our faces covered with masks).

But enough about silly COVID. The point I was trying to get at was despite us not being able to travel for the Easter holidays (I had my sights set on a ski cabin in the mountains), we did manage to take the boys on a day adventure in the city that started off with a bus ride, followed by a boat ride on the famed Beffen to the aquarium (much to the disappointment of our little Squidgy Boy, who thought he was going on one of the cruise ships that were parked on the harbor!).

We make it a point to go to the aquarium once a year, hoping that things would be different each time (at least for me). Unlike many kids, who literally push their faces into the glass to get a better look at the animals, Squidgy has since time in memorial, persisted on admiring the wonders of nature from a safe distance (god forbid the glass breaks and out swims the crocodile or worse, the glass tunnel comes crashing down on him, sharks and all!). I suppose I am to blame for that. Somehow, my very elevated sense of self-preservation snuck its way into his genetic make-up. But hey, in others aspects, Squidgy is a pretty brave kid. So no complaints here.

Little Harold, on the other hand, fought his every inclination to sleep -- which says a lot, considering how much he loves dozing off with his milk bottle in hand. I suppose, when you're a COVID baby, finding yourself in a place other than your neighborhood -- and with all kinds of animals to boot! -- is a very big deal. So even though the spider and snake exhibit had gone missing (replaced by a sky dome cinema installation and a gallery of primate portraits selling for gobs of money) and there didn't seem to be that many animals in general this time around, Little Harold had an insanely good time, pressing his face into the glass (turns out, he's one of those kids!) and squealing whenever a fish, shark or whatnot came zipping by.

So, Easter may not have gone according to how I had envisioned it in my head but in these times, perfectly laid out plans often turn into maybes, which eventually turn into disappointing supposed-to-bes -- but hey, we try to make the best of the situation.

Because really, that's just how the cookie crumbles.

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