The Oslo airport has this fascinating sushi restaurant where you sit at a bar, and prepared dishes travel around on a conveyor belt. You just grab what you want, eat it, and then at the end they count up the plates, figure the price according to the color of the plates, and that’s it. I thought that was worth a try, so I sat down and grabbed the only item that was definitely vegetarian. Shortly thereafter I decided the place wasn’t worth the money, so I took my plate up to the little to-go counter to pay. As soon as I got there, I realized that there were servers (why?), and that I was probably supposed to pay with one of them, rather than at the counter. But I was committed. The cashier did a pretty ok (but not great) job of not laughing at me. His coworker…not so much.

The flight was very comfortable yet sleepless. If you’re reading this blog, consider Norwegian Airlines for your next trip; please do not, however, recommend it to your friends—we want to keep prices low. 😉

Yesterday, Anna Rose and I went to Brighton Beach, the area of Brooklyn known for its high concentration of Russians and Ukrainians (it’s also known as Little Odessa). The area is a bizarre mix of Russian and definitely-not-Russian; the buildings are very New York, but plastered in haphazard signs, and people walk with the same heaviness in their posture that’s usual in Russia. We had lunch at a cafe called “At Your Mother-In-Law’s”, where the waiter was rather perplexed by us; bought Russian chocolate for my new roomies; explored the seemingly infinite aptekas (pharmacies, many selling so-called “traditional” remedies–many Russians believe that the best medicine comes from Grandma’s forest); and visited the real-life, literal beach, which was surprisingly beautiful. Oh, and we bought cabbage pies from a scowling woman who clearly thought I was a swamp-creature—just like old times.