To Northern Norway – August 2017

Thursday, August 3rd, 2017

We are, by habit, “early birds“ and so it seemed quite strange to be starting our holiday in the evening.

Lucie is, by nature, an excellent planner and, as we were going to “hop“ from Oslo to much further north at Narvik, it was the only way to make things work logistically.

So, it was late afternoon when, after basically doing nothing all day, we finally arrived at the airport. We were hot and sticky before we even started. It was 30 Celsius and our apartment block had suffered a blocked drain. We had not even had a shower,.

We only ever travel with hand baggage only. So, we were a bit surprised to find that Norwegian Air required us to check in our bags. This was despite the fact that the “twins“ (as we like to call our matching (and rather red) bags, did not weigh 5 kilograms together.

It was claimed that a “technical issue“ made it necessary. We were allowed us to take our two helmets, which are also twins, onto the aircraft. The check-in lady, who was very pleasant, promised to personally put the “twins” onto the plane. We hate to let our bags out of our sight. In truth, they were such a luminous red colour that they were unlikely to go astray.

Having recently travelled in South America,, the organisation of travelling in Europe now seemed incredibly straightforward.

After landing in Oslo, we found a hotel shuttle without any problems. It was right outside the terminal. There was a ticket machine on the platform. The instructions were so simple, even a trained monkey could have bought a ticket.

It is important, at an early stage, to mention prices. All the guides agree that there is probably no more expensive a country in the world than Norway. Sadly, they are probably right. In a nutshell, if high prices make your eyes water – this is NOT the place for you to take a holiday !

From what we understand, the Norwegians have a relatively high minimum wage. This means there is not really anyone who is poor by “conventional standards”. I also read somewhere that the Norwegians consider each other to be equals regardless of property and wealth. The only exception is their Royal Family.

In short, it is socialism with a human face. A least someone has achieved it.

For us, coming from a country still in the stages of early capitalism, it was a bit unbelievable how all the prices could be afforded.

We slept at the Best Western Hotel, near the airport.

We managed to have dinner just before the restaurant closed. It was a rather good tagliatelle with shrimp.

Then it was off to bed in a comfortable and surprisingly quiet room.