You guessed it. We are in the market for a new car. We have needed a new car for a little while now but have been too busy to go looking. It just so happened today that my clutch snapped while I was driving round a round-a-bout. The pedal just loosened to the floor and I was stuck with traffic behind me. I got out to try and push the car off the road but it was too heavy. No sooner, three beefy guys came out of nowhere and helped me push the car to a side road. A youth stopped on his motor bike to help. He looked under the hood and yep, my car wasn’t going to move. The youth waited with me until Farmor came to pick me up. We chatted about Australia and family and realised we could be distantly related. All his family, like Farfars come from Elvebakken. Of course the youth and Farmor knew each other (as Farmor seems to know everyone in Northern Norway). Moose got off work and we towed the car back to the farm.
In half an hour we were down at the car dealers sussing out a new car and the dealer, with no questions asked, gave us a test car for the weekend. And we haven’t even promised to buy a car! What a relief, I have rehearsals, dress runs and performances with my dancing kids all this weekend. It is very hard to get around Alta with only one bus that comes every other hour. There were no contracts, no security checks, no blood – just our name and telephone number was enough for the dealer to lend us his car.
While at the dealers we got the goss on buying a new car. There were no shady spiels or hard-sells, just jokes about throwing in the julenisse that was standing on the roof of the car. This is one thing I love about Norway. There is no pressure or secrets. Norwegians (most of them) are honest, upfront and casual when it comes to dealings with money or business transactions. And especially in a small town like Alta, people trust you and give you the benefit of the doubt. I remember these days once when I was very young in Australia. Life was more innocent. In this modern world Norway’s innocence has become a breath of fresh air.