Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Norway: Days 8-10

Day 8, Norway, June 3
In the morning we had breakfast – eggs with sausages and cheese. We stayed in the little meadow for the last night and this time packed up the tents to take off and explore more Norway.

I went to change my clothes in the woods and when I got back, I realized that I have a little tick on me. They are very dangerous in Latvia, they give lyme disease. So we decided to call a doc in town. Everyone took a good look at themselves to see if anyone else had any. I remembered that I had another one on my belly but I flicked it off thinking it was an insect. We went to the nearby town to find the docs phone number. In the mean time Janis found a tick on his leg. The doc said that there is only 1 in 1000 infected in Norway, as opposed to 1 in 10 in Latvia and unless there is a red ring around the place where we were bitten, we should be fine. We kept on going.

We stopped by a little waterfall to make dinner. The sun was shining and it was a very lovely warm day. Dad took off his shirt and I noticed a huge tick who has sucked on his neck. Janis found a tick on the back of his leg but he has had shots so he was safe. We put oil on dad’s neck and ripped off the tick. Neil made a wonderful dinner – he boiled potatoes with cheese and fried onions with sausages and tomatoes. Janis made radish salad, it was delicious.

We are continuing on a little road on the top of mountains. We found a little meadow on the side of the road where we built our tents. We had some good conversations with Anda and Janis about movies. Dad read all the women’s magazines Anda and I had brought with us.

Neil and I went to bed at midnight, dad told stories about our extended family and the three of them didn’t go to bed until 4 am. The night was cold because we camped near a big mountain river.

Day 9, Norway, June 4
We got up around 11. Neil and have been sleeping like babies disregarding the fact that we are sleeping in tents in sleeping bags, with winds blowing, matrace letting out the air, rain drops falling on the tent and us being a little cold.

We had a little breakfast and we were off to find glaciers.
On the way we stopped by a little lake around noon, where Janis and dad wanted to fish a little. The day was lovely and sunny and hot. The fishermen were left without fish and we kept going. Dad lost his lure in the fjord.

We drove through little mountain roads to the glaciers.

The winters have been really warm, so the glaciers weren’t quite as magnificent as I had expected. We made a dinner in a little meadow. We drove to another glacier, everyone was really tired. Dad had been driving the whole time. It was hard to see the glacier, so we started looking for a place to build out tents.

Dad suggested we stay at the park where the glacier was but it seemed too cold and gloomy with all the ice in the background so we talked him into going further.

He was not too happy about it. We drove on a little road and really were getting and little worried because there were no meadows to build the tents in, they were all private and we couldn’t invade someone’s land like that.

There were a lot of campsites but we didn’t want to pay the money. We found a little meadow but there was a house nearby. Neil and I went to talk to the owners. They didn’t speak English too well but we made out what we wanted. The owner let us stay there and even showed us where the outhouse is. After all these days without a proper bathroom the outhouse seemed a luxury. Anda and Janis gave them a bottle of nice brandy, which is very expensive in Norway.

Day 10, June 5, Norway
We left the meadow around 9. We were on the way to Bergen, the second biggest city in Norway.

We got there around one.

It’s a beautiful city, full of character and Norwegian fishing character.

It was a beautiful day. We walked around the fish market, tried smoked whale, which was dark brown and delicious, bought a few gifts, got ice creams. Neil treated himself to a big hot dog. Food in Norway is very expensive. A hot dog or a hamburger costs from £4-8, double that for dollars. We looked at the yachts parked in the port and headed back to the car.

There we drove to the highway 7, which is known for being very scenic. Everyone was fairly tired and we had seen so much beauty, it was hard to get excited. Anda and Janis were watching movies on Neil’s iPod.

Suddenly dad said that the breaks are working funny on the car. I didn’t think it was anything serious at first until I noticed that he pushes pedal in the floor but the car is not breaking until about second or third time when he pushed it. We stopped and dad found out that one wheel, the back driver’s wheel is red hot. We drove into the nearby town and dad and Neil took the wheel off.

Turned out that the break pad was too hot and it got stuck on the disk and didn’t come off. Therefore the wheel was so hot. When they poured some water on it, it was churning. Thank God for the protection in the little roads up and down the mountains. We put it back to together after trying to fix it and decided to take the bigger, safer road to Oslo.

That night we found a cheap camp ground for 75 kronas for both tents. There was even shower!!! There was no beautiful scenery but we were happy for being able to go to an actual bathroom and the prospect of shower the next day – it had been 9 days!!! We all had big grins on our faces.

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