Yep, as the title suggests, today, as of May 7th I am officially done with my semester at UiO. Well, to be honest I was done May 2nd. But do not fear, a loyal fan of my blog! I will still appease you with some pictures and posts about Norway and maybe other countries now and then, until I go back to Berkeley at least. There is still much to tell about this wonderful country and I am not intending to quit my promotion-campaign-turned-into-a-personal-journal hobby.
I don’t try to claim that everybody is done as early, since most of the people I know have exams well until the second to last week of May. Some poor unfortunate souls have them until mid-June. I can’t help but feel cruel when I happily grin in response to such questions as “when are you done?”, but I still do anyways.
The exams I had were 2 types: in-class 3-hour exams and a take-home exam. Nothing out of ordinary, except for the fact that in 2 of my exams I had to write my long answer exam questions on 3-page carbon paper; that is, when your copies automatically transfer to 2 extra pages that you then have to separate and put in different folders… Basically, a whole new deal of bureaucracy I never witnessed before in exam rooms. Not a fan, but tolerable. You can take one of the copies of your exam paper with you, as well as the exam questions. Probably you could burn them or frame them, depends on the level of stress you experienced before.
There are also computer exams and longer in-class exams. Yes, longer does mean 6 hours in some cases. I would not imagine a nightmare worse than that but UiO allows food in auditoriums during those extremely long exams. So again, tolerable.
Grading is apparently very strict here, and they say that “very very few receive As” and that “you need to be exceptional.” Not sure I am in the exceptional very-few bunch, but I have yet to receive all of my grades. Unless you are going to apply for post-grad studies, the chances are that you wouldn’t need a transcript from here anyways. Then all you need to do is pass, which might be a reachable goal.
Enough about the exams. While I was going back and forth from my single-room student housing and single-person cubicle in the library, somewhere in between the spring knocked some last greyness off trees and covered the whole city with leaves and flowers. Before that happened we did have a few days with snow (while the skies were blue and the sun was shining) and hail (again, with blues skies) and rain showers (blue skies, but sometimes grey). I was impressed.
Very cute signs all around town about “sleeping tulips that would awake in spring” came true.
As for me, the weather is always something to complain about–I find above 15ºC (59ºF) too hot.
As of now, I am trying to enjoy the weather without complaining, which is a life-lesson for me to learn. I am also trying to figure out my summer plans which are currently travel and work, in that particular order. Which means if I had figured out the travel part, I have yet to figure out the work part to fill up some holes in my budget that would most probably appear.
Have a very good weekend!
Today’s poem is an excerpt from Jan Erik Vold’s poem called “Elk”. Check out the full poem here (it’s worth giving a read). Poetry International Rotterdam calls him “the poet” of Norway. You might want to give his work a look and decide for yourself.
Jan Erik Vold translated the poem himself.
You may call me an
elk. I am
no elk but I have
elk – an elk’s goodnaturedness. I kick hard
More about Jan Erik Vold here.