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Tuesday, July 26, 2011
I guess you've all seen the terrible news from Norway over the weekend. I was driving to Looe (a nearby town) on Friday afternoon to pick Vanessa up from work. I was listening to music and it flicked over to the traffic news, expect it wasn't traffic news i heard, it was: 'There's been a bomb explosion in Oslo city centre'. Then the music flicked back on again. I switched back over to the radio and frantically flicked from radio station to radio station trying to find the station I heard the news on. As soon as I got home I turned on News 24 and saw the awful pictures from the bomb blast in Oslo.
My parents were staying at my sister's house just outside Oslo and my sister and her family were on holiday abroad. I knew it was unlikely my parents would have been in Oslo. After texting them I found out that they had planned to go to Olso (and would have been very ,very close to the bomb when it went off) but postponed it because of rain. My aunt and uncle and my cousins and their families all live in Oslo but they're all fine. As far as I know at the moment noone I know has been involved.
While I was watching News 24 they interviewed a Norwegian reporter when the news came through about the shooting on the island. I'm not sure what the final death toll is but how someone can shoot that many innocent people, especially teenagers, is just unbelievable.
Although I wasn't affected by the incident, as a Norwegian it's a shock. Norway has always been such a safe country. Terrorist attacks don't happen in Norway. Politicians and the royal family in Norway have a lot less security than most countries. Having lived in England for 21 years now I've gotten used to security, armed police at airports, bags searched before going into public buildings etc. The first time I experienced a bomb threat was a shock but twice in the early 90s we were evacuated from buildings in Plymouth due to bomb threats. I'd never experienced anything like that in Norway.
I hope Norway can recover from this attack and that the openness of the Norwegian society will carry on. I saw the pictures on the news this morning from the candle lit march in Olso and the flowers outside Oslo Cathedral. The attacks seem to have united the Norwegian people.
I want to finish this post by saying my thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the two incidents.