Vacation

EPCOT Escapades

My family went to Orlando, Florida a lot when I was growing up. We also went a lot after I had grown up. My favorite part of the Disney experience was always EPCOT. It was a world showcase right in my own country, what more could I ask for? There was food from around the world, makeup and clothes from different countries, and of course, foreign hotties.

One of my first experiences with an EPCOT employee was when I was maybe 15. I wasn’t exactly a catch at this point in my life. I remember entering the Canadian pavilion and wanting to get some popcorn. In EPCOT they will assure you that popcorn was created in Canada. This bit of info seems wrong. Even my Canadian husband has pointed out that Canadians couldn’t have been the first people to heat up kernels. There’s no way.

At the popcorn stand was a super cute guy named Sean. He was blonde and tall and just my 15-year old type. He looked like Barbie’s Ken. After that, I looked at him from afar and pretty much stalked him for the rest of the trip. Exhilarating.

A couple years down the line I was wandering through the Morocco pavilion when a Moroccan guy, not much older than myself ran up to me. He told me that I was beautiful and wanted to see me again. His name was Amine (pronounced ah-meen) and we became instant lovers. And by lovers I mean that we held hands and walked around a theme park together.

One night we decided to watch the fireworks. I could feel my phone vibrating in my purse but I didn’t want to interrupt this romantic moment we were having. I was basically Jasmine and he was my Aladdin. When I was leaving the park, I called my mom only to find out that she thought I was kidnapped. My brother had been out looking for me and even asked Amine’s manager where he was and when he had last seen him. My mom is basically Liam Neeson.

When is she gonna learn that no one will ever want to take me?

When is she gonna learn that no one will ever want to take me?

You would’ve thought I’d learned my lesson to answer my phone but I didn’t. Years later a similar scenario happened. I wonder what my life would’ve been like if I grew up in a decade without cell phones. I guess people would’ve just assumed I was dead after every date.

My last and most exciting EPCOT lover was from the UK. On this trip I was with my friend Janna and we had been walking around for a while when we ran into my mom. She told us there was a really cute guy in one of the shops in the English pavilion for Janna. My first thought was, “What about me?!” So we met this guy and talked to him and he invited us to go to a club with him—yes, Disney has clubs. There, we met up with him and his friend Christopher.

Of course Christopher wasn’t as cute as Janna’s guy (I forget his name) but he was funny and I wasn’t picky. We ended up dancing and making out until midnight. I knew I had to be back at midnight because I was basically Cinderella. After that trip I realized that it’s less work to just admire guys from afar at EPCOT.

Especially the guys in the Norwegian pavilion.

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Beauty

Memories in Perfumes

You know how the scent of something can bring back a flood of memories? I feel like there’s a term for it but I don’t remember what it is and I don’t want to Google search for hours. It can be any kind of smell. For instance, certain types of cigarettes remind me of my grandpa’s lake house and going to concerts. Smelling funnel cake takes me back to my brother’s elementary school carnival. I remember that time clearly because I got in a fight with a carney. She rudely said during the fight, “It looks like you got that sweater at the Salvation Army” to which I replied, “It looks like your life is from the Salvation Army.”

For me, perfume holds the tickets back in time. I’ve worn so many and been around so many different perfumes in my lifetime that my brain can’t help but to link the fragrances with memories.

Burberry Brit was a staple for me in high school. I wore it a lot when I dated my first boyfriend, Kyle. Burberry smelled the best in the winter because it had notes of vanilla and spice. Did I really just say notes? Who am I? But seriously, I remember wearing this so much that when we broke up, Kyle asked me what perfume I wore so he could get some for his new girlfriend. How precious.burberry-brit-perfume-description_18

Anais Anais is a perfume that my family likes to refer to as Anus Anus. This is an uber floral perfume and I didn’t really like it the first couple times I smelled it. It’s almost got a baby powder smell like Love’s Baby Soft. This perfume reminds me of college and new places. I moved to Utah for my first year of college and it was a big change for me. The other day I was standing behind a woman in line to get tickets for a movie and I could smell it on her. I asked her if she was wearing Anais Anais and she was so scared and replied “I didn’t realize I was wearing that much!” I blamed it on my amazing sense of smell, but really she was wearing a lot.

Ralph Lauren Romance reminds me of Canterbury. There was a lot of romance going on during that time for me so there was really no better choice. Romance smells clean to me. The bottle is also very clean and sleek looking. I would always go into the department store Debenham’s and spray loads on me so I could walk around smelling like a ball of class.

Lola by Marc Jacobs is a fairly new, fun scent. It reminds me of summertime. It’s light and bubbly. The bottle is very in-your-face with magenta hues and a big, plastic flower as the top. I wore it a lot when I was planning my wedding with my mom. Well, she planned it. I just sat there and watched, really. Maybe I can plan my own daughter’s wedding and then she can plan her daughter’s and we’ll have a never-ending line of girls not planning their own weddings. And they can wear Lola to remember it.MJ+lola

Chloe Eau de Parfum  is perhaps one of the best and strongest scents that I’ve smelled. It’s beautiful. I wore it a lot when I first moved to Canada. It reminds me of trying to find my way and learning new things. It also makes me feel rich when I wear it. Chloe is one perfume that’s very recognizable. Whenever I would go into a store people would ask if I was wearing Chloe.

Lastly, my all time favorite is Laila by Geir Ness. This is the hardest perfume to find in the normal world. In the world of EPCOT however, I know just where to get it. The Norway pavilion is drenched in the smell of Laila and it’s just glorious. My mom and I have purchased many a bottle. One time I went there and I actually met Geir Ness, a personal hero of mine, and he rubbed lotion into my hands. True love.

Do you have any favorite perfumes or scents? Stella McCartney just came out with a perfume called Lily so I guess that’s on my Christmas list now?

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Judging, Vacation

My Trip to Oslo

Since my Seattle post was so well received, I thought I might as well write about my other travel adventures. Especially the ones where I look thin in pictures.

During my study abroad in fall 2008, a lot of my friends were going to Amsterdam. I of course was banned from going there because I would most likely get caught up in the red-light district and sold as a sex slave. Or worse, smoke pot. Luckily, a couple of my friends weren’t interested in going either. We looked on RyanAir’s list of destinations and saw that flights to Oslo were going for a mere 7 pounds! Brilliant. Side note: RyanAir is the sketchiest airline you can take. Flights are cancelled constantly and they fly to airports that are more or less 2 hours outside of the city that you think you’re going to.

I was excited to go to Norway mostly because I am of Norwegian heritage. It’s easy to mistake me for a Viking woman. In fact, when we were there, most people would talk to my friends in English and then talk to me in Norwegian. Unfortunately the only words that I bothered learning were hai hai (hi) and tak (thanks). So my cover was blown often.

As for eating, we had an amazing breakfast buffet every morning at our hotel. We would stock up on food there and then grab crap at 7-11 at night. Oslo had a lot of 7-11’s. But not one Starbucks. Go figure.

I remember when we first got there, some homeless Norwegian put his arm around me and I did a full “As if!” from Clueless.

So that was fun. Besides that clingy homeless dude, Oslo was dead. And by dead, I mean that there was literally no one around. It was a ghost town. Streets were empty. Stores were closed. It was spooky.

We were smart and went on a bunch of free tours to all of the hotspots in the city. One of the most memorable stops was the Vigeland Sculpture Park. So this Vigeland guy basically made a bunch of sculptures of people without clothes on so they would be timeless. Unfortunately everything just looks very sexual. You cannot take a normal picture there. For example:

Not phallic at all.

We went to an amazing Viking Ship Museum which was a definite highlight. I could just imagine my ancestors raping and pillaging other nation’s carefully built towns. Often times their boats were buried with the men who died so it’s a real miracle that these boats are in such good shape.

We also went to the Kon Tiki Museum. Before visiting the museum, I hadn’t ever heard of the Kon Tiki expedition. In 1947 Thor Heyerdahl made a journey to the Polynesian islands. The museum pretty much explains his entire journey. It was a cool place and I got some good pictures most importantly.

I’m probably the most annoying person you’ll ever meet.

I think we also went to Oslo’s Opera house which is right on the water and shaped like a glacier which is pretty bomb. But probably slightly traumatizing for any titanic survivors. Oh, and we went to the art museum to see some Edvard Munch paintings. After being in Oslo for a couple of days, I could see why Munch painted “The Scream”.

Along the way I manged to abuse most statues that I came across.
I hope this post encourages everyone to visit Oslo at least once in their lives. It’s clearly such a hot spot!

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Judging, living in canada

Mad Hatter

Remember when Kate Middleton and what’s-his-name came to “the Americas” and gallivanted around, talking to people and pretending they were interested in Calgary, Alberta? Yeah, good times. Kate’s outfits were alright, but they weren’t outstanding. I think Kate could have done a little more to honor Canada instead of wearing traditional royal garb.

Whenever I go to a different country, I make sure to dress appropriately. Example #1: In Edinburgh, Scotland I wore my finest kilt.

I even matched the store's display!

Example #2: In Paris I didn’t go anywhere without my beret!

I was the best thing about Versailles.

Example #3: You’ve already seen a picture of me in my Dale of Norway traditional sweater!

I think Kate could have stepped out of the box in the hat department if you ask me. I’m thinking something along the lines of this:

The "Lady Puckingham"

Or perhaps if she wanted to recreate a personal favorite with a touch of Canada, she could have opted for this:

Phillip Treacy would be proud.

And if she really wanted to catch the attention of environmentalists, she could have always gone for the goose covered in oil. And she could have re-used that hat in her trip to the United States. They always talk about how she likes to recycle her clothes and how she’s a “people’s princess.” I’m just throwing ideas around. You can look at more hats here.

Unique, but not overly-busy.

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Surroundings

Norway House

Being Norwegian, I am proud of my heritage. It’s pretty much the best when you know that your ancestors were the bullies of the archaic world. I think I would have made my forefathers proud in that I carry all of the characteristics of a true Norwegian. Even when I visited Oslo, everyone was fooled. I blended right in. Besides wearing a braided halo on my head–that’s still a thing there–I was set.

I look like I belong on that ship.

So you can imagine my excitement when I saw a place in Victoria called “Norway House”. First thoughts: I need to live there. Is it only for men? Is it a secret club (I love secret clubs)? Are their weekly Norwegian activities to do?  So many questions!

Norway House, or Eidsvold Lodge, was built in 1946. They’ve had male and female presidents over the years (in fact their first president was a woman) but everyone seems to have an authentic Norse last name. Ughghg I guess I’ll have to make up an alias. I’m thinking Ingrid Jacobsdatter. See what I did there?

I just looked at the “Lodge Officers” page, and everyone is ancient. This could have been such a cool idea and now it’s ruined by old people like everything else. However, on Saturday they are having a craft fair and it mentions Norwegian sweaters. I’m so there.

Ugh except I just saw a flier for the Nordic Festival that was held in September and it says, “cultural displays, entertainment, open faced sandwiches…” OPEN FACED SANDWICHES? Just because its the Norway House doesn’t mean you have to pretend you’re actually in Norway. Call me when you can afford the other half of your sandwich.

This is so depressing. I thought Norway House was going to be cool. I should probably research my topics before I start writing because this post has gone completely downhill.

One classy joint.

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canada

The Majestic Maple

In all it's glory.

The other day my mom decided that it was about time to talk about the Canadian maple leaf. And when my mom decides something, it will happen.

She inquired about how the maple leaf is often used as a logo more than a symbol. It is (as I have recently found out) used on many restaurant chains, fliers, websites, etc. Paul was saying that the maple leaf makes people happy. Its the equivalent of saying “American Made”. I don’t know about you, but I prefer all of my goods  custom made in Chile. But that’s just a personal preference.

My mom also made another good observation–a maple leaf is really hard to draw. I’m not sure aboot Canada, but in the US, elementary schools force kids to draw American flags every year for one reason or another. Stars and stripes are pretty straight forward. A maple leaf though? Forgettaboutit.

Although, my mom said that she admires the simplicity that is the Canadian flag. She described the red as “bold and crisp”. And, while I do agree with her, I think saying that is super gay.

Let us not forget the many flags that include the color blue: USA, U.K., France, Australia, Norway, Cambodia, Chile, Cuba, Czech Republic, Faroe Islands (obvi), Iceland, North Korea, Laos, Luxembourg, Nepal, Netherlands, Panama, Puerto Rico, Russia, Samoa, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Thailand. To name a few.

How many flags are only red and white? Canada, Austria, Bahrain, Denmark, Georgia, Greenland, Indonesia, Japan, Latvia, Poland, Switzerland, Singapore, Tonga, Turkey, and Peru. These countries may all have life and liberty, but they are missing the pursuit of happiness. And I’m pretty sure that’s illegal.

Lastly, my mom asked what kind of leaf the USA would have on their flag. Lets just be clear–the USA would not pull that kind of ridiculousness with something as permanent and symbolic as a national flag. But if I had to choose, it would probably be an Oak leaf because that’s our national tree apparently.

And now it's perfectly clear why our founding fathers decided against the whole leaf idea.

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