I identify with three geographical places. Southern California, because I was born and raised there. America, because it’s my country. Norway, because it’s my heritage. My grandfather moved to the United States from Norway, after the German Nazi occupation moved through the area in 1940. Hitler was apparently interested in controlling Norway’s extensive coastline. My grandfather was 18 at the time he moved. The family was very sad, because they knew they would never see him again. Communication and travel was so different back then. Both of my parents are also 100% Norwegian and grew up in Chicago and Minnesota. They moved to California with friends when they were young as well. I have never lived anywhere but Southern California. I am thankful to have lovely weather year round.

I have a picture hanging in my home that was given to me by my Aunt Ruth. It is a painting of the family home. The home sits atop a hill, which is above a fjord. I have hopes of visiting one day. Pictures of the fjords on the internet always seems so dramatic. When the Olympics were held in Norway in 1994, I officially placed a visit on my bucket list. A friend recently visited to see the northern lights. I have decided when I make it to Norway, this is stunning and spectacular act of nature a must.

I plan to hike one of their rugged mountains or rolling hills. They seem to have endless possibilities. I also want to take a helicopter ride of the coastline. Their coastline seems larger than life. Half of the country is a coastline. But to me, the Scandinavian mountains define Norway.

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