Tuesday, June 05, 2012

fucking finally, flam and fjords.

 So we left Oslo and went on the Norway in a Nutshell "cruise".  We weren't sure if it would be some cheesy tour group thing with a bunch of blue hairs, but it's not really a cruise.  You just go to the train station, get on a train by yourself and then do a bunch of transportation transfers.  It's pretty self-directed.
more fjord pictures after the jump


 This is a view from a scenic railway called the "flamsbana" that goes between some northern city (I've already forgotten) to the tiny town of Flam.  It goes pretty high in elevation and when we saw all this snow we were worrying because we didn't really have any warm clothes.
 There were houses totally in the middle of nowhere!

 This railway is funny, because it's heavily touted as very, very scenic.  They cram you on it like sardines and there is no room for luggage. People get pretty stressed out.  Then there are a million tunnels and it stops constantly. It's really not a big deal. It was fine.
Can you tell I'm annoyed at being crammed in.  Also the kid next to me was slooowwwly eating a hot dog and I was hungry and hadn't eaten.

 Then the train started to go sea down to sea level.


 Then we arrived in the teeny (pop 500) town of Flam, which is right snuggled up next to some fjords.  Yes, it is touristy, but the cruise tourists all leave at night and we stayed at this sick hotel for 200 bucks a night.  This was our patio.  It had a free sauna!!! Which I took advantage of.  And an amazing breakfast included.  I forced myself to eat pickled herring for breakfast just because it was there but it kind of made me feel queasy.  I saw a guy eat 5 hard boiled eggs. He would put the whole thing in his mouth at one time.

 This town in the evening felt like we were living the Magic Mountain (without the TB) and we did some awesome lobby lounging.  It was very luxurious, which was great because there were some crap hotels on this trip.
 Glass-fronted lobby with a bar that served Nogne O (for 20 bucks).  I got an excellent martini.
 Lobby.

 We rented bikes and took a ride.  You couldn't go very far on a bike but we managed to fill the two hours.  This icy water looked super good.  It would be fun to plunge in, but in May you would probably get a cramp and die.



 Mailbox


 I was trying to get closer to these cows but Smiller was telling me to stay away.




 Look at how detailed this walk sign guy is.  What a natty dresser.
 Vacation reading.  I highly recommend this book.
 The next day it was time to leave Flam and travel on a boat to Bergen,  Norway.  At this point I knew we were going to see fjords but I didn't know what they were.  Turns out that there was one within view of Flam.  They're kind of just mountains into the sea.  I thought they were something crazy different than I'd ever seen. I think I had them mixed up with glaciers.

 People REALLY took advantage of the photo ops.


 Scott caught me reading this box of raisins.  I bought an extremely expensive box of raisins in Flam, mostly because they were California raisins and I was a little homesick.
 I also recommend this book.  The hijinks reach unbelievable levels.
 Bergen, which is the second biggest city in Norway (aka not very big) and deemed the "San Francisco of Norway".  It has a lot more tourists than Oslo, or maybe they are just more obvious.  Cute town, but a full day there is plenty. 
 Funny statue of Ibsen.
 harbor view
 There's a fish market in Bergen with prepared foods, but it really seemed to be mostly tourists.  I just point this out because it tripped me out that I didn't see more traditional Scandinavian foods and restaurants. 

 Here's the patio at the market.  It was very warm and sunny that day.

 They had smoked whale at the market, but again, only tourists were buying. I didn't try it.
 Bergen has a steep tram to a park, and you can hike back down to the city.

 There are lots of troll carvings in the park.  These look sort of 60s Mad Magazine-ish to me.

 There were Peruvian pipes players in the plaza - this is a sure sign of a tourist town.
 They obviously have strict zoning.  This is a McDonalds.
 I tagged up a building while I was there with my signature Kathy tag.
 umbrella repair?
 There was an AWESOME craft beer bar in Bergen called Henrik ol & vinstove.  We hung out there for quite a while. 
 Cantillon kriek on draft.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

You're giving OMF another chance to bust your chops for not spelling "Cathy" right!

-miller

ninja said...

fjords are just flooded, glacially cut valley. Like if you took Yosemite and raised the water level to half way up half dome.

-str8 2 the dome!

Anonymous said...

I like the Rabbi books too. What surprises me the most though is that my mom is crowded in with you on that train.
gbomb

Shannon said...

Seems like a fjord photo might make a nice header for your blog.

Natalie Rose said...

There is no where that the peruvian jam cannot reach.

This post is making me so sad that I never get to travel, so good job.

-Natalie.

DJ Rick said...

I second the fjord photo as header idea. It's not that I'm tired of looking at that thing....I'm just tired of people doubling back to my desk after they walk by and see it outta the corner of their eye: "What was that?!?"

captcha unscramble: 69 hoagies

beckler said...

I will change the header when undietacos changes that dudetits header that comes up when you enter an event. until then you can pry that naked mole rat out of my cold dead hands.

beckler said...

they are making the sign in words below so difficult that I am beginning to wonder if I am a spam robot

Anonymous said...

cathy tag LOLZ

dude they have umbrella repair stands all over africa!


-chachi chopstick