About & Contact

Lorelou in Askøy, © A Frog in the Fjord, 2014
Lorelou Desjardins in Askøy, © A Frog in the Fjord, 2014

I am The Frog in the Fjord: a French lady who lived in Denmark for a bit before moving to Norway for good. My name is Lorelou Desjardins, I come from Marseille in the South of France and have been living in Oslo since 2010.

This blog is about all these new realities foreigners like me face when trying to adapt to a new culture, language, country and most of all to new people. In this case, trying to understand the Norwegian culture and blending in (or trying hard).

I am hoping to give non-Norwegians a glimpse of what make Norway and Norwegians so awkward and so lovable; and to give Norwegians something to laugh or to think about. My illustrator, the very talented Ole Johnny Hansen, makes every post I write come to life with his unique view on whatever I understood (or misunderstood) of his culture. I love his work and I hope you do too!

I am a jurist, but this blog has taken me to new heights, and I am also a chronicler (spaltist) for Norway’s national newspaper VG. I also work as a freelance writer for different platforms, and hold speeches on inter-cultural issues and my experience of Norwegian culture in universities, companies and corporate events. You can send me an email at froginthefjord(at)gmail(dot)com to get my references; or check where I have been featured here.

The Frog in Numbers:
Since January 2014, this blog has between 20,000 and 250,000 unique viewers per month, with peaks at 500,000 visits in one month. Around 80 to 90% of my readers reside in Norway, some are Norwegians and some are foreigners. The USA is the second country reading my blog the most, usually by people of Norwegian descent.

Bonne lecture!

Remember, copying without asking is stealing! I have no copyright over any of the illustrations, except for one or two which involve frogs🙂

© “A Frog in the Fjord” 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Lorelou Desjardins and A Frog in the Fjord with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

86 thoughts on “About & Contact

  1. J’ai découvert votre blog en arrivant en Norvège … since then, I like to discover each new post, especially with “ce petit plus” which illustrates your style and your convictions. Ser frem til neste så🙂
    A bientôt

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  2. Gratulerer med fin blogg, et funn for kultur- og språkglade, spesielt de som er hjemme i norsk, fransk og engelsk. Siden du nå har full kontroll selv, håper jeg du vil sørge for skikkelig kontrast overalt, nå er det en del svake grå tekster på hvit bakgrunn – og det er vanskelig å lese.
    hilsen Maja A

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  3. Hi Lisa,

    du bist ja eine exzellente Norwegen-Kennerin. Hast du dort mal gelebt? Ich war vor Jahren mal beruflich in Oslo, das war im Januar, und da wurde es auch am Tag kaum hell. Aber die Norweger haben ja sehr “cosy homes”, in denen sich das ertragen läßt. Und dank des Ölreichtums in der Nordsee einen extrem hohen Lebensstandard. So, lucky Norwegians!
    Michael (from Wildner, until Feb 17)

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  4. Dear French Lady in Norway,

    I love your blog, although I am not sure why it should get so more page views than my own, The View From Falling Downs. You have had 500,000 views in one day? Holy moly! Why?

    I think it must be that in a sly way you promise revelations of and about “love.” That must be the secret. Right or left, right or wrong, commiehomofacistfag or independent small businesswoman, or both, everybody wants to have love… a brilliant marketing strategy!

    But very well done! Perhaps I will begin to offer love tips from Falling Downs.

    Sincerely and with best wishes,
    D. Neumann

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  5. It is funny to hike one day with someone until kolsåstopen and after few days to read a post in her blog and realise that oh she was the writter of the frog in the fjord!!!! I think now you understand who I am….. lol small wolrd eh?

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  6. Bonjour,
    Je suis le papa de Marin, jeune homme de presque 16 ans qui va passer l’année scolaire prochaine en Finlande avec l’association AFS Vivre Sans Frontière. Pendant ce temps là nous accueillerons bénévolement, puisque c’est la formule, une jeune fille de 17 ans, Birgitte Maaike de …..Kristiansand. Sa maman a partagé le lien vers votre blog. J’avoue que votre approche faite d’humour, d’empathie et, aussi d’espièglerie est très agréable. A suivre…

    Like

  7. Adooooooorable blog!
    I’m a Brazilian living with my also Brazilian husband in Ålesund for not even three months and God knows for how much longer (we hope much).
    I actually started a blog on food and Norwegian experiences here, the Diabetic Viking, it’s been fun! but it took me this while to come across your blog, it’s a win! will become a reader, for sure.

    xoxo

    Like

  8. American here – living in Oslo with her über-Norwegian fiancé. I just wanted to say a few things:

    1) I love the redesign of the blog! The illustrations are adorably hilarious. I’ve been reading this blog for over a year now, preparing myself for the culture shock that is Norway (although, nothing can prepare you for the Ikea, IMO).

    2) Thanks so much for the knowledge and insight you impart. As a foreigner, I find Norway to be hilariously odd, but it may be more significant since I’m American – I miss my dryer (soft towels), fitted sheets, closets, baggers to bag my groceries, and reasonable prices. BUT, Norway is a lovely place, and your blog is keeping everything in perspective.

    Thanks again!

    Mexican-American in Teisen, Oslo

    Like

  9. I just read you’re post about making friends in Norway and got to think about you’re experience when you showed up for that concert and was ignored. You should dive further into this and write an article about “all the things norwegian sais that they don’t mean”… we do often invite people to come to an event but we don’t expect them to actually show up. We do this out of politeness, the same way that we would will those award minutes on a bussride by telling you “we should meet up soon. It’s been way to long ago since we did something together”… we don’t mean this either…
    Social intelligence is something we expect people to have and sometime that means to understand exactly when we mean what we say and when we just say it to be polite. If you fail to read these signals we will write you off as a weirdone. We are strange… sorry

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  10. Hi😀

    Fun read. I do think the experiences you have is typical for entering a new and unknown country as adult with limited language skills, not typically for Norway. Well, I grew up there, but might move to Denmark in some years, so I’ll find out if it’s harder than my former “places” haha. Now I live in number six country, and the experiences have varied, but it’s more similarities than differences regarding the challenges?

    I was THINKING (shame on me for not doing!) of writing the same (as you) when I moved several times. Well, I made art out of it haha.

    Most challenging was moving to a country where there were no bridging language! No/ hardly any… officials or commoners spoke ANY I could communicate with at that time… moving to Madrid some ten years ago. Sure, folks in the hospitality industry do speak some english, but it’s not them you need to communicate with when actually moving in to live. Things like seeing a doctor, or getting the right phone contract were challenging, – interesting times. Doc made me very sick…

    And I experienced much of the same you mention when I moved to Sydney with a very limited english. Getting tired… not able to express oneself as a person! Some “aussie” slang is impossible to understand even with rudimentary english skills. They really stretch the words, and the use of them… and the intonation makes all the difference on “fuck” haha. Used by schoolgirls and bullies alike, and can mean everything from “fantastic” and approving, or be a question “really?”, to the absolutely opposite; you better run! Takes a “lifetime” to know all that? I once says “shit” in a room full of people, and the room silenced…! Whilst that would be a very mild swore-word elsewhere, at least in Norway😀
    -I don’t think there is ONE english either, I now live in the US and have to learn again..

    Well, keep up the good work an ENJOY Norway! I’ll enjoy your blog.
    hilsen Kristin

    Like

  11. Une grenouille à Tønsberg?

    Bonjour

    Je suis responsable de l’Alliance Francaise de Tønsberg, une des 6 alliances en Norvège .Comme vous savez peut-être, les Alliances en Norvège ne sont pas des institutions enseignantes, mais des associations d’amateurs de la langue et culture francaises, “frankofil” – comme on le dit en norvegien. Vous connaissez probablement l’Alliance Francaise d’Oslo.

    Une collègue m’a fait voir votre page et j’ai bien aime vos commentaires bien humouristiques et très aptes sur la Norvège et les Norvegiens, et à la fois sur les Francais. J’ai donc l’audace de vous demander si cela vous interessait de venir chez nous parler un peu de vos experiences en Norvège et partager vos commentaires avec nous- et à la fois peut être nous faire connaitre un peu la culture de Marseille, qui , on dit , tient un peu le status de Bergen en France et ainsi pourrait nous interesser – et elle n’est pas très connue non plus chez nous. . Vous decidez bien sur comment vous le ferez . On vous paierai votre intervention ainsi que vos frais de voyage et vous invite bien sur à partager le repas typique franco- norvegien de vin et fromage après. Qu-en dites-vous?

    (Votre site ne permet ni l’accent aigü ni la cedille, mais j’espère que c’est quand mème lisible)

    Avec mes salutations francophiles,
    Cordialement

    Jon Petter Wettre
    president de l’AF de Tønsberg

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  12. Bonjour,

    J’envisage de prendre l’express côtier de Bergen à Kirkenes pour faire un reportage photos. D’après vous quel serait le meilleur moment ?
    L’idée serait d’avoir des lumières les plus variées possibles et de sentir la différence entre le sud et le nord de la Norvège durant le trajet.
    Merci et bon week-end
    Jean-Jacques

    PS : Y a t-il, en Norvège, une période équivalente à notre été indien ?

    Like

    1. Bonjour,
      envoyez moi un email sur froginthefjord(arrobaz)gmail(point)com et je vous envoie une réponse sur votre adresse email, dans une conversation qui n’est pas publique!
      Bien à vous
      Lorelou

      Like

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