The early morning holds the most perfect hours of the day. I’m an early bird, and I find it such a serene moment. That silent, misty lapse of time before the streets fill with people. When I was younger, I had a job at a coffee shop. I had to be there at 5 am. I remember getting there in the dark, the bright, untouched snow reflecting the city lights. I think this was the moment I began enjoying the first hours of the day.
I don’t get away from the city that often. So I find my peace and solitude inside Oslo. Luckily, it’s what I would describe as a quiet, big city. You find these secluded spaces where many people are present, yet things are peaceful. The city works as a mood palette. I enjoy silence, but I also like to wander around wearing my headphones. It’s like observing the world through a window; it triggers my imagination. The music I listen to plus the things I see sort of work together to create new narratives in my mind.
I grew up just outside Oslo. It was true suburbia, everything so neat and quiet. My parents have always been calm, decent people, telling me to study hard and work hard. When I was 16, we moved downtown. I was so restless back then, and tired of school. So I worked in temporary jobs until I found the education I wanted.
Lately, I bought three Pileas. I had been working so much on my computer and realised I needed to do something else from time to time. When I grow tired of the digital work, I pamper my plants. I water them, take care of the plantlets, put them into new pots. One hour of doing this is like a total reboot.
Timelessness I something I honour in objects. I don’t go shopping that much. I care for simplicity in my surroundings. I do have some items from my parents’ home, though. I have this white sculpture of a boy picking a thorn out of his foot: it’s a replica of the tombstone placed on my mother’s family’s gravesite. I like the things I own to have a history, or that I can see a potential in them.
Want to catch that special Oslo-vibe, somewhere between a lean back Scandinavian attitude and true international inspiration? Here are some tracks to get you there.
"Music helps me create new stories and gain new inspiration. It helps me reload, relax and keep up the good work”
The Things I Tell You/ Biosphere
Broken Stones/ Girls in Airports
Some/ Nils Frahm
5 23/ Global Communication
Children/ Robert Miles
Byen Vågner/ The Savage Rose
Male Intuition/ Suzanne Kraft
The Holy Mountain Hällomsberget/ Ullbasunen
Says/ Nils FrahmPlaylist
Is going to Oslo part of you next travel itinerary? Lucky you! If you want to experience the true Oslo-spirit, here are a few of Mikal’s top picks:
It’s a rather new place in the old industrial area. It’s a cultural scene, but I also just use it as this quiet, secret stop where you can read while hovering over Akerselva, the river that runs trough Oslo.
09.00 - 16.00
This place is an old town part of Oslo. Time stands still, with all the low, old wooden houses. It’s not easy to get lost in Oslo, but here it’s actually possible, since the streets are like a maze.
00.00 - 24.00
In the summertime it’s a crowded public seawater swimming pool. Out of season it’s an abandoned gem, a fine stroll in a clean and raw atmosphere.
00.00 - 24.00
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