Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Norway and CERN

If you're not into Norway or physics, this post will bore you. Since I've been spending four days in Norway, and two days recovering from jetlag(! explained below), there is nothing new to report on my australia trip. Except I bought a map to get a sense of my route. Yay!

Oslo was a blast! I was a bit nervous about seeing Hedda again, but we had an amazing weekend! The first thing that struck me about Oslo is that no matter where you look, you can see mountains in the distance. I immediately wanted to get to higher ground, so we went to see the ski-jump at Holmenkolle to get a good view of the city. Oslo is a very small city (and that's coming from a guy from Copenhagen!), and the wonderful thing about it is that you can't really decide what's city and what's country side. There's cliffs and nature everywhere!

Friday evening we went to town with some of Hedda's friends. I had a lot of fun explaining how Norway used to be under the danish crown back when we were a great nation, and they had a lot of fun explaining how we danes have had our asses handed to us ever since.
Alcohol is expensive in Norway, which means they drink incredibly slowly. We still managed to get quite drunk though, and the next day was very slow. Wonderful, but very slow.

I think these were taken saturday. As you can see, we were both tired...

I just realized I desperately need a haircut.

Sunday we went to the Fram museum on an impulse (instead of kon-tiki). Oslo is on the banks of the Oslo fjord, which means they have all these pretty little islands, and we had to take a ferry to get to the museum. Inside stood the amazing ship Fram in its entirety, along with a lot of maps, items and text about the polar expeditions of Fridtjof Nansen, Roald Amundsen and others.
That evening we had a very nice dinner at a restaurant.
Hedda escorted me to the airport where we found out that my plain was delayed at least 2½ hours. Since it was late (I had planned to be home around midnight), we said our goodbyes there and Hedda took the train home. I found my gate (not wanting to repeat the experience from wednesday where I was called to the gate in copenhagen) and sat down with a book. I can be very patient when I have to, so I didn't mind and I never can sleep when I'm flying. I'm not afraid though, on the contrary! I'm too excited! Flying is one of the things I love doing most, and I don't think I'll ever get used to it.
Anyway, the plane took off at 1:20 and I was on my way home. One thing I hadn't thought about is that the metro from the airport doesn't run at that time of night, so I had to wait until 3:45 before getting on a train to the Copenhagen central station. By then even some of the nightbusses, the one I needed among them, had stopped going, and my head wasn't on my pillow until 5:10. Thankfully, my boss took pity and gave me monday off.

CERN and the LHC
Scientists at CERN will send the first beam through the LHC today! No collisions though, so you can disregard all the talk in the media about the world ending. It won't end until after the 21st of october where the particle accelerator is officially unveiled. Don't worry though, you won't even notice it!
All jokes aside, this is a very exciting day for phycisists, and by extension, me.

You're wondering what the accelerator is for? Finding the Higgs boson of course! Still confused? Here's a wonderful TED presentation by charismatic physicist Brian Cox:

How does it work? Here's an in-depth and precise explanation, but you have to be quick if you wanna catch all the lyrics:


heddajo said...

Jepp! Love the shark idea!! :D
And HEY! Norway is´nt that small! Honestly, it´s not!
Blæ! Who am I trying to fool... hmpf :P
Looking forward to futher updating! :D
Se you soon.
The countryside ses hi! (and ms Norway too..)

Irene said...

Kult at du har vært i Norge! :)