Sunday, February 1, 2009

Norway Diary Part 1

Jen & Judy

In August 2001 my sister Jen, my mom, and I went on a bus tour in Norway. It was a dream come true, and I am so glad my mom decided to go. Her Dad was born in Norway, and none of the family (except me) had ever traveled back to the 'homeland'. By 2001, most of our immediate relatives had passed on, except for my mom's cousin Kjell. It turned out we didn't get to meet him though.

During the trip we kept a daily diary. Each of us would write an entry, then pass it on with a paper clip hiding all previous entries. Hence we never read the entire diary or others' observations until we got home. It is striking to see the different perspectives. We all had a fantastic time.

Aug. 18, 2001 Sat. Nite
I can't believe I'm in Norway! My Dad's homeland. So far everything's great... I love being here with my girls. Miss John. Hopefully John and I can come again. Anxious to see the rest of the tour. Oslo is nice, but a big CITY. I want to see the country! Judy

Aug. 19 Sunday
So here we are! We are just getting on the bus. I'm looking forward to seeing some natural wonders of Norway. Oslo is very similar to many cities. It's very modern looking though Jen was talking to a man who said there is an old medieval section. I'd like to see that when we come back next Sat. Also, I saw many bookstores. I'd like to get a copy of Kristen Larvansdatter in Norwegian just for the novelty of it! But more importantly one bookstore had bygdebokers. We'll see if I can find the one on Haus.
Yesterday we walked around a bit in Oslo. I saw some beautiful sweaters. I'm determined that will be my big purchase. I'd love to buy Zach a sweater. They're cute--- but he'd outgrow it so quickly.
Our hotel room was very comfortable with beautiful wooden floors.
We had a fantastic breakfast. I sampled some salmon caviar, which was delicious. The cocoa was also fantastic.
The beer here so far is not so good-- also the coffee. But so far we've had a good time. It's fun to be here. I think Jen likes it so far. Yesterday when we were landing in Oslo the sights of the fjords were amazing. Mom got a little emotional when she first set sight of Norway. Carolyn

Jen & Carolyn
August 2001 Norway Trip 17th, 18th-- morning of 19th.
We left Boston after a block of torture tan van traffic time. Check-in and flight were fine, though leg cramps and no window seat! Cool little individual seat screens and games. "Will and Grace" at 600+ mph ground speed-- Yah! Got to Zurich-- airports are airports--waited for second flight to Oslo. Seats were bigger (smaller plane). No SLEEP YET! Uneasy landing in Oslo. Met our queen of the tour after waltzing through customs. Ma wants to ditch her gaudy pillow but she was afraid they would think it was a bomb. No one wants a complimentary body cavity search on holiday!
We got to Oslo and checked in to our roomy hotel room. We were very tired-- this was Saturday afternoon. We walked around Oslo a bit-- went into a church. I'm church jaded after Germany though. Oslo is rather ugly, actually, aside from a few old buildings. The newer architecture is like a bad version of 70's American chic. Oslo is like a poser European city.
Carolyn did a mad search for a Norwegian sweater (I wouldn't be caught buried in a swamp in one of those!) No. They are attractive, but not my way of stylin. We ate at the hotel-- T.G.I.F. and slept for ten hours. Nice biodegradable soapy shower and off on the bus with the oldsters. Note about that later! Jen

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