The D&O Diary’s European assignment continued this week with a stop for meetings in Oslo. On the flight to Oslo from Stockholm, it was clear from looking out the window that it had snowed overnight in Norway. Skies were clear and the sun was shining brightly when I made my way in to the city from the airport, but Oslo also was covered with a fresh layer of snow.  The grounds of the Royal Palace, where the lilacs had been in bloom when I visited Oslo in May, were snow-covered, as shown in the accompanying picture.


Because of my meeting schedule, I only had a short time to walk around while in Oslo. Fortunately, the bright sunshine prevailed on my arrival day. All of the places I saw on this trip were sites I saw when I was here before. However, the snow covering transformed all of the sights. The combination of the white snow and the deep blue of the skies made for a visually striking scene.


Sydney’a opera house is more widely recognized, but I think there is a good case that, covered in a light blanket of snow, Oslo’s waterside opera house is more beautiful. You can see the people walking on the roof of the opera house. Also note the myriad cranes behind the opera house. Oslo is one gigantic construction site, much of it a reflection of the country’s immense oil wealth.




In the late morning, a layer of frozen mist hung over Oslofjord.





It was a beautiful late fall day, but because of the season and the northern latitude, it began to get dark quite early. The sun actually set at 3:38 pm.


At 2:30 pm, the sun was already dipping toward the horizon.





While I was waiting for the sun to set, this guy walked to the end of the breakwater, stripped off his clothes, dove into the water, and swam for 20 minutes. When he was done, he got out of the water, dried off, put his clothes back on, pulled a beer out of his backpack, and watched the sun set. This man is a Viking.



The primary reason for my visit to Oslo was to participate in meetings and an educational event there organized by RKH Specialty and Howden Insurance Brokers. I would like to thank Piers Davis of RKH for inviting me to participate in these events and for his colleagues Cecilia Ardell and Lianne Gras for helping to plan and organize this very successful event. The meetings really were enjoyable and interesting. I am grateful to RKH and Howden for inviting me to be a part of this event.


Here’s a picture of the absolutely fabulous gourmet meal we enjoyed at the Restaurant Fjord in Oslo. From left to right, Piers Davis of RKH; Cecilia Ardell of Howden; Lianne Gras of RKH; Mikael Ardell of Howden; and Jeanette Theresa Bø of Frontline Ltd.


A roundtable discussion of D&O claims trends.


More pictures of Oslo (and some bonus pictures of London, below):


The view from the Royal Palace, looking back down the hill to Karl Johans gate.



Akershus Festning, Oslo’s iconic fortress


While in Oslo, I stayed at the Grand Hotel, a venerable Grand Epoque building right on Karl Johans gate, across the street from the Parliament Building.


London Sunshine: I made a quick stop in London before heading home. I was fortunate to be able to enjoy an afternoon of crisp autumn sunshine while there. I  enjoyed a brisk walk around Green Park and St. James’s Park. I also rented a bicycle and tooled around in Hyde Park for a couple of hours before the darkness gathered in the late afternoon. The weather can be and often is foul in London this time of year, but it is a great place to be when the weather is more congenial. In any event, the pleasant weather in London was quite a contrast to the snowy weather in Oslo!




In St. James’s Park. That’s Buckingham Palace on the left-hand side.



Another view in St. James’s Park. That’s the Horse Guards’ Building in the background.


Saturday in London, it rained. Not a great day to visit the Portobello Road Market in Notting Hill. Too bad.


Rainy Saturday was a better day to visit Hatchard’s on Piccadilly, reportedly the oldest bookstore in the city and one of my favorite places in London.


Rainy Saturday was a perfect day to go to the Famous Three Kings pub in West Kensington to watch the international rugby match between England and Australia. England stunned Australia, winning 30-6. Australia had two apparent tries disallowed. England scored two tries in regulation in the second half, and yet another in injury time. The crowd went crazy. It was immense fun.