Goodbye Oslo. Hello London. And Maya Angelou.

We danced, and drank, and forgot we were pissed that Norway stopped selling liquor in stores at 6pm. The only food we had was the dark chocolate Hersey’s nuggets with almonds I accidentally bought, craisins, and the infamous crumbly ol’ Nature Valley bars. We danced anyway, shaking pretend sweat from our foreheads like it’s New Years Eve and “One More Time” by Daft Punk is playing in beat with a strobe light. Man, didn’t we dance!

Leave with a bang, leave with a few souvenirs for mom, and leave with a few people knowing your name and asking you to come back in a few weeks when the tours have stopped. When the documentary is finished.

We did every dance ever done, and sang every song the DJ didn’t play. Eventually, he picked up the vibe I was giving off, and the party-goers picked up the feelings I was bringing, and when I did a body roll, they did a body roll, and when I jumped, they jumped. Fucking great time!

Then I followed new friends to the patio to grab air, cigarettes, and get a better look at their faces. The liquor was expensive, but damn near straight, but the laughs it brought made it all worth it. Sevall, in a fishnet top, high-waisted tights, and a trenchcoat seen on runways throughout the years, all black, gave us old school Lil Kim lyrics about being scared of penis, then learning to “throw lips to the shit.” Laughs, drinks spat across the patio, and suddenly a real moment. In and Out of Time, A Maya Angelou poem recited in an East African, partly British dialect that made us all listen and fall in love with it like we didn’t hear it in grade school first:

The sun has come.
The mist has gone.
We see in the distance…
our long way home.
I was always yours to have.
You were always mine.
We have loved each other in and out of time.
When the first stone looked up at the blazing sun
and the first tree struggled up from the forest floor
I had always loved you more.
You freed your braids…
gave your hair to the breeze.
It hummed like a hive of honey bees.
I reached in the mass for the sweet honey comb there….
Mmmm…God how I love your hair.
You saw me bludgeoned by circumstance.
Lost, injured, hurt by chance.
I screamed to the heavens….loudly screamed….
Trying to change our nightmares into dreams…
The sun has come.
The mist has gone.
We see in the distance our long way home.
I was always yours to have.
You were always mine.
We have loved each other in and out
in and out
in and out
of time.

We left without saying goodbye, knowing we’d certainly see her, Richmond, and our other new Norwegian friends again.

Hello London. 20 Hours with you and then on to Amsterdam.

Still grateful.

Darnell Lamont Walker, a self-professed traveling foodie, has been found sitting at tables eating baby goat sweetbreads, drinking tequila, and laughing loudly with strangers. The writer, filmmaker, artist, and sometimes photographer puts happiness above all.


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