November 2015 was quite a pivotal point in my life, a rather extreme decision was taken: I got married. It looked a bit scary in the beginning, but I thought it was time to start a family after spending three good decades being single. So I went to Indonesia in early November 2015, received the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony and registered the marriage in Bojonegoro on November 16th, and had our first wedding reception on the same day. 500 invitations were distributed, and around 1000 guests arrived. My legs were a bit tortured for standing, shaking hands and taking pictures with the seemingly unending stream of arriving guests. Another wedding reception was held in Jakarta on November 22nd, and around 400 invitations were sent. It was another round of legs-torturing, but with better preparation, taking into account some lessons learned from the first event. I also silently publicized the wedding events online, accessible at http://www.dafferianto.info/wedding/.
We also ordered a short clip of our wedding moments in Bojonegoro (which we preferred more than a full-length video). Seriously, I am not sure if I would ever want to watch a 3+-hour wedding video (unless I am forced to do so, of course).
After done with the wedding formalities both in Bojonegoro and Jakarta, we stayed in Jakarta for a week, mainly to start my wife’s Norwegian residence permit (family immigration) application. The process was not so straight-forward since we had to visit a sworn translator to translate our marriage certificate and my wife’s birth certificate, then we had to ask for some stamps to legalize them from two different government institutions. We stayed in one of the top-floor rooms of a high-rise apartment building in one of the central parts of Jakarta to get a feeling how it feels to live in central Jakarta.
On December 1st 2015, I traveled back to Stavanger, Norway, alone, since my wife had to wait for a couple of months before her family immigration permit was issued (and since I hold a Norwegian permanent residence permit, the case processing time was even longer compared to regular work visa, which motivated us to apply for a temporary D-type visa). That also meant I celebrated Christmas and New Year alone (well, I went out with my office colleague during the New Year’s eve to watch fireworks show). But luckily, her D-type visa application was issued in a relatively fast manner, and I fetched her in Oslo airport on February 5th 2016. We spent a day walking around in Oslo city center with a friend, and took a night train to Stavanger. It was snowing hard in Oslo.
In mid March 2016, we visited Sverd i fjell since the sun was (surprisingly) shining brightly (it was like early spring to me).
We visited the oil museum in mid April 2016, and visited the (outdoor) botanical garden a week later.
We went to Stavanger city center on May 17th 2016 to see the Norwegian Constitution Day celebration and parades.
I took my driving test in late June 2016, and luckily I passed. Honestly speaking, I prefer to travel using public transport since I can enjoy the view or read Kindle books (or simply rest/sleep). But having a driving license in Norway will provide us more flexibility as a family, especially when more family members are added to the equation in the near future. I have always been using public transport since I came to Norway in late 2010, so I can somehow claim that my carbon footprint has been quite low🙂 We then decided to buy a used car from a kind old lady. She gave her bike to my wife as a bonus for purchasing her car🙂 And we enjoy the panoramic roof, by the way (natural light is always nice to have, especially when the sun is a bit shy to shine). To minimize my carbon footprint, I will do my best to use public transport to work at least 2 working days per week. I will see if this goal will be achieved.
In mid July we visited Flor og Fjære, an artificial tropical garden in an island not far from Stavanger. The dinner was nice (albeit a bit time-consuming) and the garden was awesome.
We visited the gladmat festival in Stavanger city center a week later, and tasted burgers and waffels (we went there twice). We visited Sverd i fjell again during the same week when the weather was really good. Summer has always been nice🙂
We attended the celebration of Indonesian independence day and met with fellow Indonesians in late August 2016.
My wife wanted to visit Månafossen during the first week of September 2016, so we went there for a short hike. The terrain was quite demanding, but the trip to reach the waterfall’s viewpoint was quite short.
After living for more than 2 years in the previous apartment, we decided to move to a new one. The apartment is quite new, and is located on top of a shopping mall. I was initially surprised to find out that there is a children playground on the roof with synthetic grass. I also found the automated underground parking space quite cool.
The past year has been quite interesting, I would say. I kept learning new things at work, and I also managed to complete 3 online courses on Coursera: Machine Learning, Algorithms 1 and Algorithms 2. I think the courses were quite brain-intensive, but were still fun to take. After completing these three courses, I decided to stop taking online courses for a while and started a side project instead, to further improve my practical technical skills. The side project takes roughly the same amount of time as those online courses (roughly 1-2 hours per day). I also plan to improve my Norwegian language skills.