Still alive 1/2
- Long time no hear; now I am back with lots of stories to tell -
Wow – I don’t even know where to start. I just recognized that it has been a month since I wrote a blog entry the last time. I am sorry that I didn’t keep you in the loop, but there was a lot going on during these weeks and I just couldn’t find the time. Now I do, though I already started this blog yesterday, but something came up and I had to interrupt it. Let’s just hope that I will make it to the end today ;)
So what you missed is the following: The week after Elskhug og Eksis I spent in my bed, recovering from a bad cold due to all the rehearsals and performances in the rain. But there is nothing more to tell about it, so I just continue with the first week of July. There we got another order to drive over three days around Sogn og Fjordane county to distribute flyers and hang up posters for the opera house and rock festival in Eid. This time we were allowed to use a super nice and almost new car from the community of Eid. That alone was reason enough to go on the trip (I totally enjoy driving in Norway because of the breathtaking landscape and relaxed road behavior – in contrast to Germany) :D
The first day I drove with Oleksandr along the west coast and it was absolutely awesome. We had nice weather and got to see all the beautiful places like the well-known surf beach Hoddevik, the Western Cape or the coastal town Ervik. But what I appreciated the most was that we met really nice people on our way, who suddenly started talking to us and praised our Norwegian skills after learning about our story. I was taken aback by their open-mindedness, because normally Norwegians are known for their reserve. It seems like the smaller the places, the more chatty people are :)
On the second day Artur joined us and together we drove in the south of the county, where we haven’t been before. Again we could benefit from the beautiful landscape, for example at Grotle beach in the community of Bremanger. We could have stayed there all day, but we had to perform a job. So we went on driving and passed towns like Svelgen, Florø, Førde (one of the biggest cities in the county, however pretty ugly), Skei and Byrkjelo, from where we drove home over Sandane. On the whole it took us 12 hours that day and I was happy that Oleksandr and Barbara took the east route on the their own the next day. Artur and I enjoyed the beginning of our vacation, which I used to prepare everything for the visit of my friend, Lena.
She arrived on Thursday (July 6) and during the first days I showed her around in Nordfjordeid and took her hiking. We also planned our vacation, cooked German food, hung out with the boys and so on. Finally, on Monday we started our trip to Ålesund, a beautiful coastal city north of Eid. Due to a lack of a car and too high prices for hire cars, we took the bus and discovered the city by foot when we got there at noon. In contrast to Nordfjordeid, the sun was shining in Ålesund and we had a really good time before we went looking for our Airbnb accommodation on a neighboring island, Valderøya.
There we stayed one night with Martha, a Mexican women, who talked to us in Spanish all the time after Lena introduced us as former Spanish students. I really struggled with the language, even though I could understand everything. Fortunately Lena continued Spanish in the upper secondary level and could buffer my lack of speech. All in all, we had a really nice stay and Martha even gave us a lift back to the city the next day.
There we went up to the viewpoint on Mount Aksla, then shopping and sightseeing while enjoying the sunshine before we took the bus back to Eid. We only spent one night back home and took another bus to Bergen in the morning. When we arrived, it was already pretty late and we didn’t get to see a lot of the city apart from the supermarket, which provided our dinner. To find our Airbnb turned out to be more complicated than the last time and we had to ask locals, but they were very helpful and finally we arrived at the house, which can host up to ten persons. It belongs to a Norwegian, who rents it out to several tourists at the same time and that way we got to live with Germans, French and Chinese. It was kind of funny, but strange too and definitely less personal than in Ålesund – still it was nice and we could enjoy our stay :)
Our second day in Bergen started with another hike, this time on Mount Fløyen. It took quite a while, but from the top we had a fantastic view over the whole city. Back down we walked along the famous series of Hanseatic commercial buildings, called Bryggen. Unfortunately the whole place was crowded with tourists from several cruise ships, mostly Germans. So after taking some pictures we went further into the city, away from the masses, and down the shopping street, to the church, the university, city park, art gallery and the theater. By the time we reached our accommodation we were quite exhausted and just went to bed after cooking pasta in our shared kitchen.
Our third and last day in Bergen consisted of a large walk out to the aquarium, another one through the tiny alleys of the old town and a shopping tour. In the afternoon our bus back to Eid left and we spent the journey either talking or dozing till we finally arrived at night. There Lena had her first disturbing encounter with drunken youths in Norway – a boy suddenly ran over the street and jumped into the hedge in front of us, crawled out, started running again and jumped headfirst into a ditch next to the street, where he disappeared. While I broke into laughter, Lena was torn between amusement and shock – in any case we went straight home and welcomed our bed after the uncomfortable bus and lack of sleep.
Actually, I want to go to bed now too. I was already afraid that I wouldn’t finish this blog entry today, so I will have to continue another time. At least half of it has already been completed. You will hear more from me soon. It won’t take another four weeks, I promise ;)