Prior to moving to Norway I was lucky enough to be given a fair bit of advice from down-under orienteers who have done the Europe move before me. Some are still in Europe, some are back home and settled now. But, their opinions always agreed on two points:
- It is a long, long, way from home.
- You think you know what winter is. You don't.
Both have turned out to be very true, however forewarned is forearmed right? So when I booked my flight to Norway last year, I thought I'd be smart and book a return ticket back to NZ for December. Avoid winter, and a date to look forward to. 2 birds, 1 stone.
At first though, I felt like a wimp; I mean who runs away from their first 'proper' winter?! But then, I started to realise that it was actually quite normal for a lot of European orienteers to escape off on (sometimes multiple) warm-weather training camps. So really, what was the difference in my plan? Bar a few thousand extra km travel of course...
So, December saw me hop on a plane back to NZ; primarily for some summer, family, friends and familiar settings (Summer FFS), but also embarking on my Halden Overseas Training 2016-2017 Winter Antipodes Recon Mission (#HOT1617WARM).