The day will come when I will die. So the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my allotted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze.--Richard Bode

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Goodbye to Norway

Yesterday was another long day in the rain. It never seems to stop here in Scandinavia this summer.

I could tell that I was riding through some magnificent scenery, but I just couldn't see it very well, especially when I got up high in the mountains between Norway and Sweden. It was not only cloudy and foggy up there, but it was also cold (around 6 degrees Celsius -- about 50 degrees Fahrenheit).

I really like Norway, but I hate their prices. It is such an expensive country. But, if you shop around, deals can be had. Just last night, cold and wet, I tried to check into a hotel in Storen, Norway. There was one hotel, a rather seedy looking place,and they wanted $160.00 for a room for the night. There was no way I was going to pay that. Twenty minutes later on down the road, I saw a sign for inexpensive rooms in a place called Savalen. I wasn't expecting much, but I thought I would give it a try, even though it was 11 kilometers off my intended path. It turned out to be a first class hotel in a beautiful ski resort up in the mountains.They charged me $85.00 for a very nice room. This was about half what the first place wanted, and it included a gourmet breakfast with cereals, yogurts, several types of fruit and cheeses, eggs cooked in at least four different ways, a variety of breads ..... It was marvelous, And since, for some reason, Europeans think sliced cheeses and lunch meat make for a tasty breakfast, I was able to take some of those breakfast item and make myself a couple of sandwiches to eat on the road later.

I took some pictures of the hotel and of the beautiful views there, but for some reason my camera must have decided it did not want to save them. Stupid camera.

Anyway, today turned off sunny and warm. I couldn't believe it. This was one of the very few sunny, warm days here in Scandinavia this summer. For the first time, I could really see the scenery. I think every part of Norway must be absolutely beautiful, but today's ride in the warm sunshine made it picture-postcard perfect.

There are picnic stops all through Scandinavia. I guess it is something a country can have when that country has the highest taxes on Earth.

Doesn't that sandwich from the breakfast buffet look great. I certainly enjoyed it.

I kept looking around as I was riding, and thinking to myself that this scenery looks familiar. A short time later I came to the town of Roros. I knew where I was then. Jessica and I spent a long time looking around Roros just a couple of weeks ago. At that time we were going North. Now I am going South and seeing it all in reverse. I am headed to Sweden. Time to spend the last of my Norwegian Koronas.

Just before the border between Norway and Sweden, I came to a Norwegian town where there was a gigantic fair going on.

There were booths and people everywhere. I just had to get off my bike and investigate.

As it turned out, stopping was a big mistake, because all of a sudden there was a huge traffic jam. It was caused by hundreds of old American cars. They were all built, it looked to me, between 1955 to 1965. Look at some of these beauties.

They just kept coming and coming. I wound up in the middle of that mess. It took me forever to negotiate the streets and the traffic jams and to get back on the road again. But I managed, and before long I was finally in Sweden. I am about three and a half hours away from the ferry that will take me back to Denmark. I guess I will be back in Denmark tomorrow.

Toward the end of my trip today it clouded over and started to wet down the pavement again (will it never stop?). It wasn't too bad, but I decided I need a hotel room again tonight. I was asking the nice desk clerk at the hotel I chose about all the American cars I kept seeing here. He says it is just something that is very popular in this area. He himself has two of them: a GTO and a Transam.

Anyway, I guess I will be taking the ferry to Denmark tomorrow, so it is goodbye to Norway, Sweden and Finland. I have had a great time here. I really like these three countries.