Sunday, 2 August 2009


Some good friends of ours asked if we'd like to join them for a holiday in Norway. It was a time-share so there would be no accommodation costs and we were delighted to accept. So we soon found ourselves jetting over the North Sea towards Scandinavia. Flying is not my thing so I was dosed up on tranquillisers and spent most of the flight avoiding looking out of the windows. Basically, I preferred not to be reminded that we were 30,000 feet up in the air in a large cigar tube!

After landing, the girl on the Hertz desk at the airport gave us an opportunity to try out our 'essential Norwegian'. Her name was Freja and she was from Athens! I offered to do all the driving with the aid of my Sat-Nav which I fondly call 'Helga'.

We stayed at a ski resort in log cabins which were very well appointed and comfortable. They were really attractive since their roofs were turfed in grass and covered with wild flowers in bloom. The grass prevents the snow from melting so that it helps to insulate the cabin. However there was no snow it being August, so the resort was in its summer guise.

Strangely, the light bulbs in the cabins were very dim which made my wife's make-up sessions a real trauma for her. I thought she'd be pleased when I came up with the cunning plan of using our bedside table lamps inserted one under each bra strap to provide lighting for both sides of her face but she just gave me one of her looks. To be brutally frank, she needn't have bothered because she rapidly developed an unfortunate skin allergy which meant that her eyes had raised red areas beneath them – a bit like sunburnt tortoise skin.

We spent much of our time at the resort walking amid the beautiful scenery which almost every part of Norway seems to boast. At the time we stayed there, they were holding their annual Peer Gynt festival. The performances took place on three nights and were in the open air on the shore of the beautiful lake Gålå. There was something quite magical about hearing the strains of 'In the hall of the mountain king' ringing out across the conifer forests. We were also lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the start of the play, when the cast arrived in small boats across the lake, emerging from eerie mists.

On the penultimate day Helga and I drove us all to a National park. This was at very high altitude, so high that there were no conifers to be seen. Instead, there were stunning views across snow-capped mountain ranges - beautiful!

All good things come to an end and on the final day we set off for Oslo. At last my wife had the chance to do some shopping, except that I haven't yet mentioned that Norway is extremely expensive so there were certainly no bargains to be had. Nonetheless, she managed to find something she could afford to buy in a clothes shop so her eyes were twinkling out above the scabs below them!

It had been a wonderful holiday with good friends for company but we all agreed that beautiful as Norway was, next time we went away together, we'd choose a country where we could afford to buy a beer!


  1. A holiday is a holiday but I agree, you have to go somewhere you can afford a beer. Sounds like a great time, nonetheless.

  2. Sounds lovely (apart from the skin condition!)

  3. Sounds great Tony! I love your comments about the lamps,bra straps and make up! Ha ha!!! Hope her skin allergy is all better.

  4. I have to go to Olso next year for work - I will remember no beer comes near and the prospect of putting the pollyfilla on in a dim light (cue drag queen)