We’ve Got Pigs On Our Deck!

The slide into winter is definitely accelerating.

The Trees: Just about the only thing left on the trees now are the berries. At first this seemed a little odd because in England there are so many birds which eat the berries they are always gone before the leaves fall, but here there only seem to be crows, magpies and a few smaller species, and none in great numbers, so the fruit remains, at least for now.

The Freeze: It seems the local council were right to shut down and remove the fountain and their boat, because in the course of three nights, Finnsnes Vann (the pond / lake) has frozen over (pictures taken on 3 consecutive mornings). Now every night is well below freezing with day time temperatures a balmy 2 or 3 degrees C.

The Dark: Last Sunday we were at a family service in Rossfjord which started just as the sun was setting (5pm) and by the time we left a bit over an hour later it was pretty much dark.

The Poles: The council continues to deploy them on the side roads. I was curious to know how they were erected, and today I found out. There is a special lorry with a machine on the back which makes a hole and inserts the pole to a pre-determined depth automatically, and all in a matter of seconds. It’s very clever, but sadly I didn’t have my camera. And just for clarification, the poles I refer to are the red plastic ones used to mark the edge of the road, not people from eastern Europe.

The Pigs: No, we haven’t gone all ‘good life’ and started a farm – it’s just a cheap headline-grabber. In Norway, the word for a car tire is dekk and the word for studs (as in  blunt spike) is pigg. This therefore allows us to say we have piggs on our dekk, i.e. tires with studs, suitable for driving on ice and snow. This year October 15th was the official date on which you could switch from ordinary summer tires to vinterdekks. Oh, just for completeness, the word for pig is gris, so if you read a post entitled gris på vår veranda then you will know we have become farmers.

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5 responses to “We’ve Got Pigs On Our Deck!

  1. Do you have ice skates – we lived on a lakefront in N.J. – one year we
    had ice skating the week after Thanksgiving (about last week in
    November).

    • Arctic Organist

      We don’t have ice skates (yet), but apparently when Finnsnes Vann (the pond) is properly frozen, the fire department spray water on it to get a good skating surface, and there are flood lights so it can be used in the dark. I’m sure we’ll have pictures when it happens.

  2. Also John, in the same vein, if you “grise” something you make a mess of it or as my north of England dialect says it “looks like a pigsty”, ie “grise” also means messy or dirty.

  3. Jon, the 16th October to the 1 May are the dates you *may* use studded tires. This is true. You could, as you say, change to this tyre (and I recommend you do so). However, it is NOT true that you can just carry on driving on your Summer tires. Although no date is specified for the use of non-studded Winter tires – these are an alternative if you don’t want to use the “pigs” – you are legally responsible for your tires being appropriate to the conditions. So if you end up in a ditch some snowy day with poor tires, or Summer ones, your insurance company will take a dim view. You still have to change to Winter tires, in other words, regardless of whether or not you use the “pigs”.

  4. Well, this post answered an earlier question. And they are mandatory!

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