A polargeek heads North...east
One geek's travels to Oslo, London and Stockholm
Almost everyone who knows me outside of Framheim has asked me, among other things, "Why Norway?" Evidently, it's not far up on most American's list of holiday destinations. Well, their loss.
Even if I weren't a polargeek, I would have loved Norway. Even without knowing the language, even without the heritage (Slattens, I've been told, were Vikings. Yeearrrrgh!), even without the friends, even without the history (although admittedly, swing the proverbial dead cat in the crowded room of polar history and you'll hit bunches of Norwegians), I would have loved Norway.
True, I don't do well on sun-kissed islands, lying in the sun (I burn so easily), sipping mai-tais out of coconut shells (coconut...ick). What I am good at is getting lost in in strange cities on windy, cloud-covered days and scribbling in a journal, drinking coffee (or beer) in outdoor cafes. It seems I was born for Norway.
But luckily for me, I did know the language (a little), I do have friends there, and there is --can I get an amen-- the history.
Sure, some people wouldn't be so excited by a city with streetnames like "Roald Amundsens Gate," "Otto Sverdrups Gate" and "Fridtjof Nansens Plass." But I was, for I am a polargeek. There are surely some people who would be bored stiff climbing about an old ship, reading brass plaques engraved with the names of men not particularly famous or accomplished. But I was enthralled, for I am a polargeek.
And no doubt most people would fall asleep watching a play performed in a language they, for all intents and purposes, did not speak. But not me, for that play had Sverre Anker Ousdal in it, and I am a polargeek with particular focus.
And so, in no logical (and definitely no chronological) order, my travelogue: