Friday, 10 August 2018

Oslo, Norway (Brekkelia 3A)

My only planned activity for today was to visit the National Gallery. Otherwise, it was going to be a mostly relaxing day. I had heard that the National Gallery was an excellent place to visit. Mostly because one of Norway’s famous artists, Edvard Munch, has one of his best known paintings, “The Scream” (or in German, “Der Schrei der Natur”) shown there.

I don’t need to fill my day visiting many attractions. Just being in a new country and riding the bus, as I was doing this morning, is always an adventure. Sometimes it can be as interesting as visiting a museum. You never know what you’ll see, hear, or learn.

I wasn’t sure what to wear as I left the flat. It looked like it was going to rain, but it seemed like there was going to be more wind than rain today. I took along an umbrella and wore my waterproof boots just in case. When I got down into the center of the city I noticed the wind had really picked up and I had to keep a hand on my hat so it wouldn’t blow away.

When I arrived at the National Gallery I decided to have a tea and maybe something to eat in the museum’s cafe. Their menu had a number of interesting items to select from. All of the food items listed had French names and were described in both Norwegian and English. I selected an item that looked like a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. And green tea.

While I was waiting for my meal to arrive a couple sat down at the table next to me. They were Americans. I didn’t let on that I was American too. And was glad I kept to myself. They are the kind of people who probably shouldn’t travel. Their conversation was mainly about challenges they were having or a question that needed to be answered. And the one that gets me is when I hear about the “funny way” something is done in this country. Most of all, it didn’t look like they were having a good time. Neither of them laughed once in the 30 minutes they sat next to me.

After lunch I started my tour of the gallery. Considering the scope of the gallery’s inventory, the curator(s) did a great job (in my humble opinion) in selecting an interesting variety of the best of the best, to show the range of mainly Norwegian works to display. Each room had its own theme. I took pictures of what I found most interesting. Of course the works by Edvard Munch were the most popular. I would rather see a gallery focus on the “best of the best” and show a good variety rather than quantity of art. This is where I start to get bored when I see huge rooms filled with roughly similar works.

That is really all I wanted to see today. It was enough to take the bus into the downtown area, walk around, see a museum and other buildings, then I’m done for the day. No need to pack too much into one day.

When I arrived at the bus stop I waited quite a long time (over 30 minutes) for my bus to arrive. The sign said it was a few minutes away but it never showed up. I realized that it was almost 5:00 on a Friday and perhaps there was a delay somewhere. It didn’t look like any of the buses or trams were moving. I made the decision to get away from the congested downtown core and see if I could perhaps go home via Uber.

I found a Starbucks and ordered an Uber from there. I could see that it was going to be around 15 minutes before it would arrive, so I went to a nearby store and bought ground coffee and juice. (They didn’t have any orange juice so I bought pomegranate instead. No orange juice?)

I checked on the progress of my Uber ride and it showed it was 10 minutes away, then 11 minutes away. I felt the dread that the Uber might be caught up in the traffic as well. Then I saw that the Uber driver had just arrived. Great! And saw that the driver’s car was a Tesla. I hadn’t had a ride in a Tesla before. Nice!

I enjoyed the ride up the hill to my flat. As we pulled into the road to the apartment building, the driver pointed out that a tree had fallen on a parked car. The winds must have been fierce up here while I was out visiting Oslo. The parked car was obviously totaled. Completely smashed. Fortunately it didn’t look like anyone was injured.

When I got back into the flat I looked out back on the deck and a chair had been blown into the Airbnb host’s vegetable garden. The only damage was a pepper plant with a broken branch. I sent a not to the host to let her know of the damage to her neighbor’s car and to her pepper plant.

I spent some time in the evening looking at travel options now that I know that Corrine will be joining me in September. I ate a bowl of chicken soup, made from the roast chicken on Wednesday. I only watched a couple of episodes of “The Flash” because I was tired.

Tomorrow I need to get a document that was sent by our attorney signed, scanned and mailed back to him. Otherwise, I will visit the Oslo harbor again and perhaps take a ferry over to the Museum of Modern Art.

 To see pictures: 
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