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17th of May is Norway’s National Day. For centuries we fought for independence from Denmark, and on May 17th 1814 we finally wrote our own constitution and became an independent country, before eventually being forced into a union with Sweden. However, we still kept our Norwegian identity and dream of one day having a country of our own, and in 1905 we finally won our freedom. Today, no matter where in the world we find ourselves, we will put on our national costume and best clothes and gather to wave our flags in a grand parade. We seem to be flourishing and invading every country on this very particular day, forming parades everywhere from Manila to the Antarctic, despite there only being 4,8 millions of us. It is on this day that we overly privileged Norwegians stop complaining, and for once remember and appreciate the fact that we live in a country of welfare and freedom, and remember the ones who once fought for us.

There are approximately 6000 Norwegians living in London, and today we (+ one slightly confused but enthusiastic American by the name of Valerie) gathered in Southwark Park to shout “hurray” and celebrate ourselves:

Can you get more Norwegian-looking than this little kid?

Ice cream is a huge thing on May 17th:

Valerie was stunned by the level of hotness and fitness amongst the Norwegians:

Getting ready for the flag parade:

Valerie: “Cathrine, Cathrine, what am I supposed to do?!?!” Cathrine: “Just smile and flash those big blue eyes and pretend to be Norwegian!!” Valerie: “Uhm, oh ok!!”

Cathrine: “You definitely have a better chance at passing for a Norwegian than me anyway!!”

After the parade I got Norwegian sweets, and was in Norwegian paradise!!!!

And I of course shared some of the heavenly tidbits with Valerie:

I had a wonderful day, and it was so much fun hearing Norwegian again! I cannot wait to come home in 27 days and revel in some more Norwegian sweets and Norwegian hotness. My god I just realized today how hot Norwegians actually are. I have been absent for far too long.

Oh, and I definitely must come to America soon and see how Valerie celebrates July 4th!