Tuesday, 20 September 2011

63 Gothenberg and Oslo

Monday 19th Sept
A night of torrential rain that apart from being annoying was not too much of an inconvenience aside from putting us off from going into Gothenberg for the previous evening. We both had a great nights sleep and then popped out for the prepaid buffet breakfast which was typically continental. We set off at about 10am and headed into Gothenberg to do some much needed shopping. For example the 240volt inverter packed up yesterday so we needed to replace that along with the necessary adaptors. We also needed the obligatory fur lined, brown leather, size 6 booties, further progress being impossible without them. Lots of brownie points for me....
The tallest building in Gothenberg - affectionately known as the lipstick.

The city is completely mad, trains, trams, busses, taxis and cars all looking for space.

Then it was off for Oslo and Norway. On the way Karen spotted a Golden Eagle. I would like to say that makes us even but I am now in second place out of 2.
Karen has been looking at the Norway guide and it looks like a visit to the Viking museum is on the cards for tomorrow.
One of the remarkable bridges we drove over

More bridges

On arrival at the campsite we decided to rent one of the small chalets that are a feature of Scandinavian sites. It allowed us to take stock of our gear out of the rain.
Where is that bloody cat ?

It was quite funny, because Leon didn’t want to join us in the cabin. He did his usual of exploring the locality, but then jumped back into Gromit, meowing at us when we didn’t join him.  Eventually he decided to come in and I think he enjoyed the warmth of the under floor heating eventually.
Tuesday 20th Sept
We set off for the Viking museum at a place called Bygdoy, as mentioned yesterday. On arrival I was asked by a bloke in perfect English if I knew how to use the parking payment machine. As I showed him, I could not help but think he looked familiar. When Karen saw him she thought the same but neither of us mentioned it. When we were inside we had another short conversation with him whilst buying entry tickets. Anyway, the penny eventually dropped and Karen thought he may be someone we went skiing with. Another enlightening conversation and we were talking to Martin Jones who we had been skiing with for a week in Livigno 3 years ago. He had come on a trip organised by our friends Debbie and Andy Lagden on the Isle of Man. How small is this world?
Do I know you from somewhere - Martin Jones. The Gokstad Ship built around 890, used as burial ship 900AD

The museum was amazing. What the Viking men and women achieved in an open topped boat beggars belief. They travelled, raped, pillaged and traded all over the northern hemisphere. They were also the first Europeans to discover North America.  The boats in the museum were all found buried underground following the owners death. They were used as burial chambers and the deceased were buried with all sorts of animals, other food and essentials to allow them to continue their journey into the afterlife. Much like the Egyptians in the pyramids. Also, like the Egyptians, the graves had been robbed of all valuable goods.
The Osberg  Ship, built 820AD, burial ship for very rich lady 834AD

View from above

A cart dating from 820AD on the Osberg ship

One of the sledges found in the Osberg Ship.

Part of the carving, now very famous Norwegian sign of history

We then walked about 600m to the Kon-Tiki RA museum. For those that do not know, a Norwegian named Thor Heyerdal (1914-2002), a very forward thinking explorer who had a theory that it had been possible for ancient cultures to travel across the great seas in boats made only of papyrus or balsa wood.
In 1947 he did this:

In This:
Front view

Living quarters

In 1969 he did this:

In this:
Kon-Tiki Ra II

We then got on one of the Hop on-Hop off buses to tour around the city. I have to say, Scandinavia in general has a very good feeling about it. It feels safe, clean, modern, helpful and English is spoken by absolutely everyone. Even some TV adverts are in English (featuring George Clooney).
We “hopped off” at the Oslo Cruise Terminal and Akershus Fortress. We only wanted the tourist info so we could get a Norwegian flag for Gromit. On leaving and setting of on the bus again I asked Karen for the camera and she correctly informed me that I had it. This was not totally correct as it was still sat on the counter of the tourist information desk – muppet.
Fountain in front of Parliament

Houses or Norwegian Parliament

Harbour Police

Oslo Cruise Terminal, just short of the tourist information.

Akershus Fortress

After collecting the camera we walked into the city centre for a look around and some food.
One of the squares before we hit town.

After our bellies were full we popped around the corner and visited the Ice Bar. 
Glasses are Ice, drinks cold,15 mins top!The writing on the wall says "failure is unimportant, it takes courage to make a fool of yourself" by Charlie Chaplin, some of you may agree.

A bar in the usual sense but one that you are only allowed to stay in for 45 minutes. The whole place is made from Ice, including the glasses and furniture. We had a cocktail each and only lasted 15 minutes even wearing our supplied arctic warfare suits.
Royal Palace

Nobel House where the Nobel prizes are decided.

Hello, Winston Churchill,

One of the fabulous open spaces, this is filled with carved statues by a local hero.

The Gateway to the Norse Museum, it explains religion and life style

The church that is in this park was built back in the 1200s and on being built the architects did not want to offend either the Christians or Vikings who uses dragons for Gods so they put both symbols onm display. (Unfortunately the park was closed by the time we got there so this is from the internet)

They can't miss me! I know they need these bags!

After our freeze,(a prelude to what is to come at the Nordkapp, don’t understand why everyone laughs at us when we tell them where we are going at this time of year!), we jumped back on the bus and saw a wee bit more of Oslo and then reclaimed Gromit.  Tomorrow we are off North East and on up towards the Nordkapp.
Conclusion, so far I think this is a wonderful country, and am so glad we came here.

No comments:

Post a Comment