SATURDAY, JUNE 19TH – LYNGDAL TO DALEN, NORWAY:
Slept less than 2 hours so I didn’t go running this morning. Thought it was going to be cold and would have to run “trails” and “roads” again anyway. Had a quick breakfast and checked out of hotel. Turns out it had warmed up considerably AND I could have run bike trails into town. Darn! Will definitely run tomorrow in Dalen. I know where a good gym is in Interlaken so I can get back into working out instead of just running every day.
The bus ride was LONG but scenic. I’m coming back to Norway on July 8th and will stay until July 19th – one festival in Vinstra and one festival in Breim. I don’t have time to fly home between the two weekends plus it’s so expensive. So I’ll stay in Norway (AGAIN) but this time I’m going to do something I’ve always wanted to do here – take the Norway in a Nutshell Tour. It goes from Oslo to Bergen via train, bus, and boat. Actually takes you up one of the highest points in Norway and then a boat takes you through the fjords. However, I got the “Norway in a Nutshell Tour” free today. The last few miles to the hotel was spent going up a huge mountain and then coming down the other side. The road was narrow but was two-lane traffic. When someone met out bus, they had to pull over. There were multiple hairpin turns and since we were in a double-decker bus, we were up really high. Made me a little nauseous looking down into the valley below when there was no guard rail on the side of the road. The brakes started squealing about the last 2 miles of the trip and smelled like they were burning when we finally arrived. Looked like a really cool LITTLE village. There were several little amusement park type things and lots of little stores. Will go exploring tomorrow.
The hotel is OLD, OLD, OLD and very historic. However, it is most famous for the “ghosts” that live there. Normally that would freak me out. But I’ve become so well acquainted with the one that lives with me, it doesn’t scare me at all. I asked the receptionist about the story. Evidently in room 17, there was a dead baby found. Then also in a room up in the loft, a baby was born and was dropped and killed. Guests and employees say they hear a woman singing as if to a child and also hear a baby crying. Very sad.
Our rooms are nice but the internet wasn’t working. I had a low signal so I moved to another room. The signal in the new room is excellent but I can’t connect to the internet. I was walking around the lobby holding my computer up like a lightning rod trying to get a signal when a man who works here started quizzing me. I was pretty frustrated and not that nice to him. The pressure is on for me to have access because the Bellamys have a huge media tour beginning early Tuesday Morning all over Switzerland. Still needed to download the revised itinerary and make copies of it. He told me that I would probably have to go into the little gift shop and use the “wired” computer. Even offered to let me plug mine into the DSL line. I was trying to make him understand that I would be working a 3 am and had a printer, external hard drive, and headset that I would have to carry around with me besides the laptop, electrical plug and convertors! He reached out and started stroking my cheek and telling me that this hotel purposely did not have telephones and televisions and did not want to have great internet connection because guests came here to “heal their souls”. I assured him that if I couldn’t get on the internet, I was going to be much too stressed to experience any “healing” since we have to work while we’re here.
They also insisted that everyone (including the sound company and opening act) eat dinner together at 7 pm. They said they had 10 fish and 10 beef entrees. Then when we got in there they said 2 of the fish were cod and 2 were mackerel. By the time they got to me, they were out of cod. AND, it was LAMB, not BEEF! I ordered the fish but figured I wouldn’t be able to eat it. It took almost an hour for them to bring out the food. Strange because they way they were limiting us to 2 items, I assumed everything had been pre-prepared. Not so. And, when the fish came out, it still had the tail, skin, and bones in it. I told them to take mine back and I’d eat the lamb. Instead, about 20 minutes later, they came out with the tail removed. Again I said, bring me the lamb and 20 minutes later, they came out with the skin removed! I was going to at least try to eat it but I could smell it before I got it to my mouth and just decided to eat the mashed potatoes and salad. Thankfully, there is food at the venue tonight. A hot dog never sounded soooooooo good! J
They did have a good dessert – panacotta in orange sauce – the only thing really edible for my dinner.
Came back to the room and found another wireless connection had popped up and I was able to log on to AOL. Don’t know how long that will last. We have to leave for the venue at 10:30 for an 11:00 pm show. I slept a LOT on the bus ride over today, so I shouldn’t get too sleepy! Honestly, have slept more on the bus trips than I do in my bed at night.
Show was great. Even after the Bellamys finished performing at 12:30 am, there was another band going on to perform until at least 2 am. People were still coming in when we left. We had fun watching several drunks “dancing” with themselves at the show. I couldn’t find my camera in my purse so I had our promoter bring me back to the hotel. Not in my room. I know I had it on the bus today because I took some photos. We call the bus driver and he’s going to look tomorrow. I’m also going to look in room 12 where I first checked in today. Maybe I accidentally left it in there. Sure hope so. There some photos on there that I had not downloaded to my computer yet. Not to mention that I don’t have a camera the rest of the tour. Don’t want to buy one over here because the charger will have a European plug on it.
Going to bed soon. Susan says she’s going jogging with me around the lake tomorrow. At least we have a day off and the internet seems to be working again. All the shops are closed, so I can get some work done….maybe. Jennifer is really scared of “ghosts” so she probably won’t sleep at all tonight. We were all trying to think of some way to hook up a recording of a woman singing or a baby crying outside her window. Evil!!! J
SUNDAY, JUNE 20TH – DALEN, NORWAY – DAY OFF – HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!!!!:
Woke up and looked at my alarm clock and saw it was only 7 am. Laid back down and the second my head hit the pillow, I heard a baby cry – just one very loud “Waaaah” – at the foot of my bed. So loud I shot straight up in the bed and looked at the floor at the end of the bed to see if anything was there! Of course, there wasn’t. My mind immediately went to the “ghosts” supposedly living here. Sort of freaked me out but nothing else happened. Will be interested to see if anyone else heard anything last night or early this morning. Had I not just been awake looking at the clock, I could have blamed it on being a dream while I was asleep.
Rocky said that he was talking on Skype when he heard someone at his bathroom window saying “Wooooooo”. He thought it was one of the band members trying to scare him so he ran into the bathroom, ripped open the curtains and screamed. Turns out it was a blonde Scandinavian couple and he scared them so badly they took off running as fast as possible!
Went jogging with Susan. We split up so I could do my slow little jog and she could fast walk. Really beautiful scenery here. Sure hope I find my camera. Ran around the lake for 30 minutes and then up to where we had the concert last night. EVERYTHING is closed today. L Came back and showered, answered email and went looking for my camera. Good news is, it was under the bed in the first room I checked into! I was so relieved. If Susan hadn’t reminded me that I went into that room first, I would never have found the camera!
I decided to walk to the little pizza place to try and find something for lunch. Wally walked down with me and Frank and Rocky joined us. The guys were in line in front of me and the machine would not accept their credit card without a PIN number – which we don’t have in America. Cards in Europe have all gone to the kind with a “chip” in them instead of the “stripe”. America has invested too much money to agree to change the machines so most of the countries in Europe are refusing to accept our credit cards. If we had a PIN number, we could enter it, but the credit card companies have told us we don’t have PIN numbers. Supposedly, any of the companies in Europe are supposed to be able to accept the “stripe” without a PIN but most of the sales clerks just don’t know how to do it. Anyway, I had cash and bought lunch for everyone. I ended up getting a hamburger and giving the bun to a beautiful bird who was eyeing us.
Came back and walked around the lake again – this time with my camera. Took some great shots. The hotel is really beautiful – just much too “remote” for me. Some guy in an old lime green Chevrolet Impala was “cruising” all day long – driving back and forth down about a ½ mile stretch of highway. He must have passed me 20 times when I was walking. Guess there’s not a lot to do here for entertainment.
Dinner was much better tonight. They let us order from the menu and the choices were lamb, deer or duck….none of my “favorites”. Since the lamb looked “safe” last night, I went for it. It was actually very good and didn’t taste anything like the lamb I had in Kuwait!
Had a little meeting with David, Wally and Susan afterwards to go over next week’s schedule. Have been back in my room for a couple of hours – working – except for one trip upstairs to the “ironing room”. I don’t like to go too far upstairs because of the “haunted loft”. David was telling me about feeling an ice-cold breeze in the hallway by my door. He had told Susan about it earlier today BEFORE he heard my crying baby story. When I walked through the door slowly, I felt the same chilling wind. It doesn’t happen every time but once was enough to get my attention. Guess I’ll have a “restless” night tonight. Fortunately, I am hopeful I can sleep on the 5 hour bus ride to the Oslo airport. The “security personnel” strike ended today so we shouldn’t have any problems – other than our “usual”.
Happy Father’s Day to all my wonderful friends!