Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Other things’ Category

I finished my last day here in South Africa treating a rhino for an abscess on her hindquarters. She was darted from a helicopter, when running with 2 other grown rhinos and a calf about 8 months old. I was on the ground leading the “buckie” (truck) to where the helicopter instructed me to go when the animal was darted, and saw the rhinos running over the open grass field. I can’t explain the feeling of awe that went over me looking at these magnificent creatures. They got as close as just 20m away from me; full grown rhinos with horns! Unfortunately, it’s not often you see them with horns anymore. The reason for this is poaching.

Facts about rhinos killed in southern Africa is shocking. In 2009, 122 were killed; in 2010, 333 were killed; in 2011 448 were killed, including 19 critically endangered black rhinos. 200 were shot by pseudo hunters, 28 poached in Zimbabwe, 27 poached in Kenya and two poached in Swaziland reaching a shocking 705. In 2012, 281 had been killed by the end of July and it’s expected that this number will reach 595 by the end of this year. Numbers are increasing almost daily (facts from Getaway Sept 2012).

There has not been any medical proof found by traditional medicine that the popular myth that rhino horns (ground to powder) is an aphrodisiac is true. A politician in Vietnam ran a television campaign about how rhino horn cured his cancer, which caused an increase in demand. Other than that it’s believed that it reduced inflammation, fever and hangovers. In Yemen, the horns are used as a handle for daggers that men own. The fact that rhino horn is illegal and so rare causes the black market prices to rocket. A 2 kg rhino horn can go for 2 million South African rand. Seeing as minimum wage is so low in South Africa, poaching is therefore an alternative some choose to supplement their income. If successful they can earn a lot. A grown rhino can have horns up to 6 kg. Another problem is speculators who hedging against rhino extinction.

There are a lot of corrupt people in the anti rhino poaching industry as well. At the moment there is a trial going where a game farmer and two vets are charged with killing more than 39 rhinos and selling their horns on the black market. The cost of a rhino is a fraction of what you can get for its horn, so some game farmers might be tempted to hunt their own rhinos for their horns. I asked a farmer who said that the cost of a rhino could be around 240 000 R, whilst its horn several million. I find it horrible that vets, who are there to look out for the welfare of such animals, could be in on this. It doesn’t help the public’s trust in the vets that actually do good.

Poachers don’t always know how to properly kill the rhinos when they shoot them. They therefore often leave them hurt to the point that they die a slow death. The poachers won’t hesitate to start dehorning the animal whilst it’s still alive. I heard that poachers will shot the calf as well if there is one. The calves do not have horns, but because they often stay with their mums, the poachers are often afraid of them. Therefore rangers can end up finding both the female and calf rhino dead. I was told that the vet I worked with was called out once when the female rhino had been poached. The calf was found next to her alive, but soon after the calf got really sick. When the vet came, he found
that the calf had been shot too, but at a place that wasn’t very visible. The shot had penetrated the chest cavity right next to the right front shoulder, which penetrated the lung and diaphragm on the right side. This unfortunately caused the calf to die a few days later.

So I’ll try and write about some of the good the vets do to prevent poaching, from my experience the past weeks. Some farmers choose to dehorn their rhinos to prevent the animals being killed by poachers. If they don’t have any horns, there won’t be a reason for them to shoot the rhinos. The vet would dart the animal from a helicopter, then monitor its anesthetics safely, whilst using a chain saw to cut off the two horns. Care has to be taken not to cut too deeply, because this can cause blood loss. The process is documented with photos and a person from the government wildlife conservative has to be present. The vet also has to apply for a permit to do the procedure, which last
a month at the time. After the horn is cut, diesel is poured on the horns and they are burned to ash, which is documented again. A problem with the application to get a permit is that this process is very slow and by the time the vet gets his licensed for the needed rhino, it might have been poached in the meantime. Another problem with dehorning the rhino is that the female rhino uses its horn to defend her calf from the male rhinos, which can cause the calf to die if the mother can’t protect it.

Another approach is to microchip the horns. Another farmer we visited didn’t want his rhinos to live without their horns. They lose their pride and beauty if you take away their horn. So in this case the rhinos are darted. Then a small hole is drilled in each of the two horns and a micro chip is inserted into the horn. The drilled out bit is placed in jars, along with blood samples and some pieces of hair. This is all sent to a lab to be DNA profiled. If a rhino poacher is caught and some form of DNA is found with the poacher it can be traced back to that killed rhino and the person can be trialed. The problem with this again is that it won’t prevent the poacher from killing the rhinos in the first place. A person who has a permit to keep a rhino horn, will have to have a microchip in the horn, there are then people who come and check yearly that the person has not sold that horn on the black marked.

It is horrifying to think that these magnificent animals might become extinct in my lifetime!

Read Full Post »

We started the Monday by going to a farm which had a very big herd of buffalo. Buffalo are one of the big 5 here in Africa and is though to be the most dangerous one of them. They are very destructive in their path, ruining trees and branches and can be quite aggressive if one come to close. Especially when they have calves. The buffalo bulls could weight over 1 ton. Marius went up in the helicopter and darted them from the air. Then once the animals were falling asleep the trucks came driving up closer to that one animal. Because they were so heavy we only did 1-2 at the time. Once the animal hit the ground we all ran up to the animal to make sure if was breathing ok, keep it head and body upright. The black workers had stretchers that they got under the animals. Then there wee 16-17 people lifting that one animal up onto the truck. The truck drove the animal to the enclosure where it was spending the next days and it was lifted off the truck again

We injected them with antibiotics for the dart wound and other vitamin, vaccines etc. The buffalo skin was measure and injected with avian (on left) and bovine (on right) TB to be tested for TB, by a new measurement in 3 days. Because their skin is so thick it can be hard to take blood form the cephalic vein and we therefore got to practice taking blood from the air vein. After we were done with this, which had taken most of the day because we could only take 2 at the time, the farmer said he had 30 wilderbeest he wanted moved as well. They were darted 4 at the time and transported to the camps they were moving to, then we gave then antibiotics etc and I got to give some of them a reversal to wake them up through the ear vein. The wilderbeest was moved by truck as well, but the workers didn’t really know how to handle the animals and unfortunately one of them died of asphyxiation because of a handler that carried the animal upside down to the truck.

Tuesday we went to Chad place at castle de wilt again. This time we darted 70 wilderbeest, both golden, blue and black to pregnancy check then in addition to the normal injections and blood sampling of the pregnant once. Because the animals were already stressed and heated from the chase to be darted, the pregnancy could be quite fragile. We therefore only felt the once that were very obvious. It was still a very strange experience to feel the head of a foetus wilderbeest.

Wednesday we were called out to a game reserve quite far away (about 2 hours drive there). A 4 month old Giraffe was not putting any weight on it s right front paw and the owner was concerned that it might be broken. A giraffe is very sensitive to anesthetics, it can easily die and its would therefore only be possible to put a cast on the giraffe if the foot was broken. Marius Louw darted the giraffe from a quad bike this time. The mother was not far away from its baby the whole time we treated it. When the giraffe went down, me and Ele had to sit on its neck to keep it down whilst Marius injected it with a antidote right away to wake it, so that it didn’t die. Ele tried sitting on its neck alone at first, but when the giraffe woke up slightly it had no problem standing up with Ele on its neck. Marius had to practically rugby tackle the little thing to the ground and with me and Ele on its neck it still tried to get up a couple of times. It turned out that the little thing had a gotten a thorn in between its hoof. The torn was taken out and it was given antibiotics. The prognosis was very good. The problem with the farm was that it was very little for and too many animals in the area, so Marius was going to talk to the owner about clearing vegetation to make the farm better for the animals there, the concern at the moment was that the animals there now wasn’t in too good a shape and looked rather scruffy.

On the way home  a farmer called about a sable. It had broken its right metatarsal bone (hindlimb). The sable was given painkillers and taken away from its herd. It was quite young and if a sable is taken out of its herd, there is a very large risk of it being killed when put back in again (by the other sables). Therefore this was removed completely from its herd to be sold of later or put on its own after it had healed in an enclosure. The foot was cast with fiber glass cast and given the necessary antibiotic and painkiller injections.

Thursday we were called out to castle de wilt for a lame black Impala, a lame sable and a golden wilderbeest that didn’t look to good. The sable turned out it had a thorn in its foot as well. It was a beautiful animal with huge anthers it being a male. The wilderbeest had had diarrhea the day before, and it was therefore thought it  could have coccidiosis. This is a parasitic disease of the intestinal tract of animals caused by coccidian protozoa. When the wilderbeest was darted a faecal sample was taken, but there was no diarrhea anymore. The animal was treated with antibiotics and treated for coccidiosis, plus other parasites and ticks to prevent it being darted again. The condition was poorly and it looked shaggy, so time will tell if it makes it.

Because it was 3 days ago since the buffalo had been injected with avian and bovine TB we went back to that game farm to re-measure the skin. The only problem was that 7 buffalo had escaped from the enclosure they were held at, so they would need to be darted and brought in again. The animal in the enclose was very easy to get to, they were darted from the side and when it was safe to enter, we ran in to measure their neck, take out the dart, spray the dart wound and woke them up again. It was a simple and quick thing to do. Now getting the once that escaped was worse. After trying to drive up to them with the truck, Marius decided that they needed the helicopter again. The only problem was that the wind was very strong and the weather was treating for rain. The first pilot they called didn’t dare to come because of the wind, so in the end Lambert came. You could see that the helicopter was struggling, suddenly turning the opposite direction to what it was meant to etc. it started raining, so me & Ele who were standing on the back of the bucky both to pick up the buffalo and riding with one each on the way back to monitor the anaesthesia (breathing), were soaked wet. At one point I was sitting on a calf buffalo who was about the size of a st bernards dog to keep it down before it was lifted up on the truck, and the little thing almost stood up with me on it, whilst being drugged. They are strung even at that age.  We managed to dart and transport all the missing 7, but when transporting the last two it started hailing. Not small hail like at home, but 3-4 cm large hail. Never seen anything like it. After the job was done we stopped and got hot chocolate on the way home and changed tops. All 3:  Ele, Marius and me were soaked to the skin. Driving back it started thundering and lightning was shooting across the sky around us. The lightning lit up the sky with multiple colours. I swear the lightning stays longer on the sky here and is more powerful than at home. I wish I could have photographed it to show it, it was a sight I won’t forget. The rain continued through the night. The first rain in 6 months, so it was needed. The past weeks it had been a lot of bush fires around the area.

We were meant to dehorn some rhinos on Friday, but because the roads were in poor condition because of the rain, this job was cancelled. Me and Ele decided to go into the clinic to see if anything interesting was going on there. When we got there Erika was finishing a cesarean section on a jack russell terrier. The owner had waited 24 hours before bringing here in, but luckily they managed to save all 5 puppies which were jack russell dachshund crosses. The owner didn’t want the puppies so they were given away at 1 day old. This is normally not the time you can give them away, because they need their mother for colostrums milk etc. the new owner would have to feed them every hour for the first few days. Fingers crossed they make it.  After this we assisted Marius with a bladder stone surgery. The stones retrieved was massive 5-6 cm. Saturday we all went out for a breakfast/ lunch at Spurr to say bye to Ele, which was leaving for Cape town that evening. Going to miss here!

Sunday Blackie took me to Zebula game reserve.  This seemed like a family resort for wealthy people, but you could go there to meet the animals. I saw some baby Tigers & meerkats. I got to pet a lynx which was walked around on a lead and go into the cage to five 2 month old lion cubs. One of the lion cubs started playing with my camera strap, so I got to pet him whilst he was gnawing on it. I almost didn’t get my camera back when I was leaving. After this I went and had a private interaction with two grown cheetah. Jane and Tarzan was their names and they had been pets for a women in Pretoria until they got to large. They were very same, and when I started scratching Tarzan’s ear, he was purring like a cat. We sat on the grass side and I got to rub their bellies and cuddle them whilst they licked each other, me and played. It was an amazing experience to get that close to animals that are normally considered very dangerous. But these seemed like large cats, just wanting some cuddles.

 

Coming home we all had a braai by the pool. Ciska (Heleens daughter) and husband Louis came with their two kids and we swam in the pool, had wine and enjoyed the rest of the Sunday sunshine. Ending in a small party in the guesthouse bar. All in all a great ending to week number two.

 

 

Read Full Post »

Ever since I started vet school I wanted to visit Africa and try working as a vet with all the exotic animals there. Vets & wildlife is one of the organizations that allowed this; working alongside an experienced wildlife veterinarian and participating in capture and treatment of wildlife. I was lucky enough to get to work with Dr Marius Louw.

To get cheap flights I had to travel quite the detour. My journey started in Oslo at 8 am going to London. I was meant to leave London to Cairo, Egypt at 15:00 but the flight was delayed 2 hours. We were meant to reach Cairo, Egypt at 21:00, but didn’t get there until 22:30. My last flight to Johannesburg was boarding at 23:10 so I literally had to run through the airport to make it. I was very worried that because of this my luggage wouldn’t get there with me. I arrived at Johannesburg at 7am the following morning and was greeted by the host family; Heleen & Blacky Swart, who drove me to where I was staying in Modimolle two hours from the airport.

I got places in the Limpopo province, South Africa, in a town called Modimolle or Nylstroom. This is on the southern edge of the province. I’m staying with a lovely host family here in Modimolle at the Lekkerbly chalet Guest house with Blackie and Heleen. It’s a very friendly Guesthouse where I got a large double bedroom to by self with an en suite shower/bathroom. The room had a separate entrance so that I could leave in the early hours of the morning without waking anyone. There was a large fence around the house, that I had my own key for in addition to a fridge in the room where the guest house made a lunch that was ready for my days adventures when I left. In the garden there was a Jacuzzi and a small pool. There was also a small bar on the premises, so all in all I was pleasantly surprised by the standard.

The first day Marius Picked me and another student names Ele (from Cambridge) up at 5.40 to leave for one of his largest clients. They had a lot of Wilder beast they wanted to Microchip, blood sample and move to another site. Marius also has a vet nurse named Jozelle who came with us today. The vet went up in a helicopter with a very good pilot “Lambert” and darted the animals from the air. Then a buckie (truck) drove after the Helicopter and black workers jumped out and lifted the animals up in the buckie back to the camp where we were, which was not too far away. Me and Ele both had responsibility for two drugs each. I was to inject the large animals with 5ml biosolomine and 4 ml kyrolego and the younger once with 3ml of each, and Ele was giving them 3ml duplosilin, which is a penicillin for the dart wound and 8ml anti parasitic dip on the back. Jozelle gave them 1.5ml ivermectin sub q. We also had to blood test them, so we both got to practice blood sampling quickly in the field. All in all we worked until 6 pm and did 106 wilder beast that day, which was a new record according to Marius. At one point I was allowed up in the helicopter whilst they darted the animals. I thought I’d be terrified of the heights, but it was actually a lot of fun, so I really hope I get to do it again.

The second day we were picked up at 5.45 again and were really feeling the work we did the day before. In the mornings it was quite cold, so you had to wear a fleece. We went back to the client of the day before. This day they had some Golden wilderbeest they wanted to move and blood test to get their DNA profile to see how their genes were. The Golde Wilderbeest had a lighter colour than the “normal” blue Wilder beast, which makes them worth a lot more money. A gold wilderbeest could get sold for 200 000 Rand compared to 1500 R for a blue wilder beast. The atmosphere was therefore a bit tenser that day. Everything went in a lot slower tempo to make sure that the animals were treated with care. After the last wilder beast was treated, they darted some Impala from the helicopter as well. These are a lot harder to dart because they jump when they run. The impala was given smaller doses of drugs; they were also given smaller doses in the dart because they would die quicker. The vet often came running out of the helicopter to give them the reversal drugs to make them not go into cardio arrest.

The next day we worked with Impala which is like a medium sized African antelope. Dr. Louw had to dart them from the helicopter again, but these were much harder to dart then the wilderbeest because they jump from side to side and also reach a running speed up to 90 km/h. The impala was injected with penicillin for its dart wound, and moved. One of the Impala ran into the fence when darted and got a nasty wound on the head about 10-15cm long. It had to get stitches before it could be moved on. One of the impale there was black which is very rare.

Erika Senekal is another vet at the Practise Bos en Wild animal hospital. We worked with here on the Thursday to TB test cattle as well as pregnancy rectal examine the cows and check the semen quality of the bulls. It’s amazing how friendly the farmers are here. They let us students try a lot more than at home. Me and Ele took turns rectal examining the animals, so we got a lot of experience just in this one day. Erika was very helpful and would explain what she was doing and why, as well as answering all out questions. It really made me want to come back to practice in South Africa to learn more.

Friday didn’t start off as we thought it would. Me and Ele was told that we would be vaccinating buffalo that day, but when we got in the car with Marius he said that the plans had changed slightly. A wild male lion had escaped from a game reserve and they had been looking for it for 2 days and finally spotted it at a neighbouring farm. We drove to the game reserve where Marius went in the helicopter to go and look for the lion to dart it whilst me & Ele went on the back of a game rover with a huge wooden cage between us. It wasn’t the normal “tourist” routes we took, but steep, rocky roads climbing up the mountain sites with tree branches going into the road, so we had to duck and hold on as best as we could. After about 1 hour they managed to spot the lion and dart it. When it was sedated we could approach it and touch the massive animal. It had huge paws and the canines were as long as my finger. The satellite collar it had on was replaced before the lion was lifted into the cage. Then they drove it back to the game reserve where it was but in an enclosure for a few days to keep an eye on it to make sure it came out fine from the anaesthetics before being released into the reserve again. Going down the mountain again, it was a strange feeling having a lion so close to you, even though it was fast asleep. After this we drove to the farm with the buffalo and injected 5 calves.

Saturday me and Ele went to Forever resort in Warmbaths, Bela Bela. We had the intention of trying the cable water skiing there, but this turned out to be a lot harder than we thought. We both ski and snowboard but with the cable skis they pull you at the speed of the boat around on a cable and there is no ease into it so one is very reliant on triceps muscles to manage to stand. After quite a few face plants in the water and I even managed to leave my board at the platform a couple of times, we gave up and went on the water slides instead. We had a lot of fun with the speed slides and also managed to squeeze in half an hour Swedish back massage for our sore muscles =)

Sunday the guesthouse Heleen and Blackie took us to Zebula for Adventures with elephants. This is an organisation that takes problem elephants and train them to interact with humans. They educate people on the use and treatment of elephants in addition to using the elephants against poaching for rhino horns. I got to meet and interact with 6 beautiful elephants. I felt the sole of their feet, them flapping their ears and my favourite part was feeling their chest when they talked. The whole elephant was rumbling. We played games with them too learn how smart they where, one of them remembered by name out of 4 people and could also give me my shoe back from a pile of shoes. After the interaction we all went on a ride with them around the area. It was a really special feeling getting to get so close with these massive animals.


.

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

The Statsraad Lehmkuhl is the worlds largest three-masted barque rigged sail training vessel owned and operated by the Statsraad Lehmkuhl Foundation. It is based in Bergen, Norway and contracted out for various purposes, including serving as a school ship for the Royal Norwegian Navy.It was built in 1914 as a school training ship for the German merchant marine. After the First World War the ship was taken as a prize by the United Kingdom and in 1921 the ship was bought by former cabinet minister Kristoffer Lehmkuhl (hence the name, which means ‘Cabinet Minister Lehmkuhl’). With the exception of the Second World War, when she was captured by German troops, the ship has belonged to Bergens Skoleskib until it was donated to the Foundation in 1978.

I was lucky enough to sail with the ship from the 25th of May to the 29th of May. We left Bergen at 12.00 and was assigned teams. I ended on the Blue team, which meant that we had to work from 8 in the morning until noon, and 20:00 to midnight.  On our way to Lerwick, Shetland we had no wind. The north sea was as calm as the waters by the harbour, which was very rare.

We reached Lerwich at 9 in the morning Sunday the 27th of May. Shetlands are located directly west from Bergen. The Shetland islands are made up of around 100 islands. The earliest Vikings settled down here in the 8th century and its been inhabited since then for over 6000 years. During the 2nd world war there was a military base for Norwegians in Scalloway, west of Lerwick. During our visit there was a lot of people that had Norwegian Flags up, and out Shetlander guide spoke Norwegian as well.

 

 

We visited one of the local pubs that night and came back to the massive ship to sleep in our hammocks. It was fun being part of the crew of the boat. The Crew stationed on the ship though us the ways to sail the ship. Everything from the different names of the sails and how to take these up and down, to different knots to secure the sails etc.

on the way home we had a small storm, and I unfortunately became seasick. I spent the day hurled up in my sleeping bag on deck. They had to put anti slip mats under me so I didn’t slide around when the boat went from side to side. All in all even though feeling pretty rough, the mood was on top and I got to see the large waves along with oil platforms in the middle of the north sea. The next day we reached Bergen at 18:00. A very nice trip, meet a lot of great people. Hope to sail on the ship again sometime. Maybe next year when they sail for the Faroe islands.

 

 

Read Full Post »

When someone leaves you, it’s important to release him/her. And know it doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. It just means that their part in your story is over. Your story will go on.

Instead of stressing over the loss of this person, you must face forward, happy in the knowledge that the empty space they’re leaving behind is clearing up space for someone far more right for you—someone you’ll now be far wiser at recognizing that they’re far more right!

Also, I believe much of the pain of a breakup comes from having a life plan with which you have fallen in love. When it does not work out, you become angry that you now have to pursue a new life plan. If you ever want to tame your inner demons, you must consciously choose never to become too attached to any particular life plan—and always remain open to the idea that there might be an even better life plan for you. In fact, in my life, I’ve often discovered than my Plan Bs are even better than my Plan As. (Ditto with my Plan Cs!) Embracing detachment as a way of life will always give you a healthier sense of peacefulness when you get plunked into one of life’s potholes!

You must view your life with what I call “kindsight.” Instead of slapping your forehead and asking, “What was I thinking?” you must breathe and ask the kinder question, “What was I learning?”

Basically, a bad break up is never meant to teach you, “I’ll never fall in love again.” It’s meant to teach you, “Now I better know what makes for healthful, happy love, and, thanks to this break up, I’m now better able to recognize it and snag it!”

Written by Karen Salmansohn, best selling author.

Read Full Post »

I just watched a routine on So You Think You Can Dance, I know Norway is a bit behind everyone else:P Anyways the dance was with Robert Roldan and Allison Holker.  The Choreographer Travis Wall did an amazing contemporary dance to the song “Fix You” by Coldplay.  The piece was truely amazing and I think that anyone who has cared for a loved one that has become ill will think the same. You just have to see it youself:

One website said:

Robert Roldan with All-star Allison – Contemporary

The moment I learned that his pair would be dancing a routine dedicated to choreographer Travis Wall’s ailing mom, I knew this would be “Cancer Dance 2.0″–one of those lump-in-throat, hair-on-end weepers that would elicit tears, raves, and, hopefully down the road, Emmys. (Actually, Adam did say, “Travis Wall, if you don’t get an Emmy nomination for this, there is no God!”) With Robert portraying Travis the supportive son (amazing acting skills here) and Allison (thankfully recovered from her own injury from last week) playing the fragile mother, these two danced this painfully personal piece (set to Coldplay’s “Fix You”) with equal amounts of grace and grit. By the dance’s end, everyone was a basketcase–Cat was choked up, the three judges were on their feet, Travis had tears running down his cheeks, and even Robert looked emotionally spent, heaving for air as if about to collapse into sobs. Nigel said this piece “transcended a television dancing competition.” Adam dubbed it “one of the performances of the season” and admitted he had a “snot bubble” from crying. And Mia, who lost her father a couple years ago and her mother earlier this year, said through her tears: “That’s the best I’ve seen you dance this season–really, really stellar.” All season long, Robert somehow has not connected with viewers, despite dancing excellently week after week after week. Will this be the routine that finally wins over America? I have to think the answer is yes.

Read Full Post »

I thought I would inform all the Norwegian costumers with Xtravaganza about big price difference we found out between prices for the diet in Sweden and Norway.

As I said before in a previous post, Xtravaganza is a Swedish concept that has been in Norway the past couple of years. It just reached Oslo where I live.
VLC = The soup or shakes, is almost 30% cheaper just 2 hours driving from where I live in Oslo.  Xtravaganza isn’t really a cheap diet, but it works. So I thought it would be worth if to just kick this weight once in for all.  First of all you don’t get any discounts on VLC in Norway, even though I’m doing full speed for 3 months.   In Sweden you get a discount so that if you buy a week worth of food you get it cheaper. This results in that the VLC packets are 13kr (about 1,2£) cheaper pr pack in Sweden. When you eat 3 packs a day, that is 3£ a day and (273kr NOK) 21£ a week I’m saving on just driving to Sweden to buy the food.  My mum and I put up a spread sheet to show how much we have bought on full speed and what we save by going to Sweden

This is for 2 people on full speed and as you can see by the yellow marker we save almost 8000kr NOK which is about 800£ by buying VLC in Sweden compared to Norway. That’s insane.
My mum contacted the Norwegian head of Xtravaganza, because there had to be something wrong with this calculation. He said that this is how it is because of taxes etc (which isn’t that much) and that he wouldn’t give anyone a discount.

The Program has just reached Oslo about a year ago, and this resulted in that the only health consultant at the health centre is pretty new. I got the impression that she was new and seeing we could compare with what other health consultants were saying in other parts of the country, we figured that she didn’t really know what she was saying. I instead listened to my Aunts health consultant- who knew here stuff after many years in the program.  Whist the oslo cosultant was saying to slow down on the oil when the weight loss was stopping up, My aunts health consultant were telling me to increase the oil when the weight was stopping up.  Etc.  I know that I was starting this diet at the beginning of the summer and that it would therefore be some limitations to the program. However the health centre in Oslo closed off all group lessons for 10 weeks!!!. I don’t like doing strength 3 days a week and therefore mix it up with classes like step, aerobic, step interval, spinning etc.  This resulted in me having to pay to work out at another center.  The Oslo health consultant also left on vacation for 3 weeks, so I was asking what we were paying  a 100£ (1000kr NOK) for that month. Here in Norway you pay 100£ (1000kr) per month for the 4 first intensive months and then you only pay for the workout center after that.  I refuse to pay 100£ to someone who isn’t there or to a center who isn’t offering me anything! My mum talked to the Head of Norwegian Xtravaganza again, but instead of trying to sort things out., he got angry and said that ”Well we don’t want any costumers who’s not happy with us, so I’m ending your contract”. What kind of business is that? You’re always going to get problems, and cant just jump off when that happens!

Wednesday the 28th me and my mum drove 2 hours each way to Sweden and bought 300 VLC and talked to the health consultant there, who had run over 25 courses the past couple of years. She really knew what she was talking about and was appalled about how the Oslo consultant was handling it. She recommended some new products that they didn’t have in Norway:
To clean out the system whilst doing Xtravaganza to help the weight loss she recommended

  • Xtra psyllium, which is psyllium seed shells.  These seeds will go into the digestive system and clean it out. You drink extra water with this (very important).
  • She also recommended more oil if the weight loss was stopping up.
    we use rapeseed oil (make sure its quality oil)
  • I found that when I leave for work early in the morning and need oil during the day I could bring the oil by having it in a 60 ml container- very practical =)

In Sweden the expiration date on the packets was a lot newer, which was very noticeable on the powder when i make the shakes- it mixes a lot better.
Sweden also had another flavour chocolate toffee. This shake was meant to have less lactoses. I personally though it was sickening and wouldn’t recommend it=)

By the way I had my part goal on Monday and I reached it- wooohooo

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »