August 25-26, 2001
There are 1000-year-old traces of historic past, adding just a little flavor to this otherwise somewhat ordinary place. I suppose it would make a good contemporary setting for a story with rich character development, not having overbearing historical remains. The green toned stone is unique and can be seen as the blocks for the millennium aged cathedral.
The marina is well occupied with holiday boats and industry, reminding one of Norway's link to the sea.
My second day here was spent mostly walking the path on the nearby Dade peninsula. There are some ruins here that look like strategic defence locations for WWII and in the same location remains of something that could be centuries older. Walking further, I spotted a cave. Of course, I had to explore. The height, width and bottom surface were perfect for walking. Although there were no traces of man, I wondered if this were an exploratory mining tunnel. Well out of visible light, my last match revealed only my steaming breath and forming stalactites. Cold air was blowing out even here. It might have started to slope down at this point and a stone throw landed before hitting a wall - it must continue a good distance more.
The wind started to softly whistle and I could feel my head being turn by the gusts in my beard. It's growing longer in the colder climate, enough that if I don't comb my hair, people say I must have Viking blood (it's actually possible on my Scottish side).
I spotted a sailboat that had rushed in from the pending storm and then saw three distressed faces, one debating to jump into the water. It was his backpack, off the boat and drifting away. As I got closer for a better look at this crisis from an old concrete dock, I found a huge pole and was able to catch the pack and bring it to shore, some 25 feet below. The most distraught one ran over to it and began inspecting the pocket contents. The two on the boat said something in Norwegian while beaming great smiles. I waved and head up the hill. My heroic deed: saving the sea from what would soon be considered a bag full of litter.
Where's that rain? Bring it on! A few minutes later it came, I took refuge in a section of a man made cave/tunnel and snapped a flash picture (no more matches, I'll see what's in there when my prints come back). In a break, I escaped and found a thick plastic bag to make into a large hood. It ruffled in the wind like a flag in a storm, but kept me warm and dry. After awhile it amused me... what could this hood be... an arctic hood? I'd like to make it to the Artic Circle someday, but there's not enough time in this trip.
That time would come sooner than expected. (See Sweden next week)