an old lady? on a wall? sure I guess
I arrived in Stavanger early in the afternoon, and I immediately noticed the difference as I exited the terminal: it was bloody cold! Being used to the Scottish and English summer, I would like to describe that gloomy day in Stavanger as anguished. I took a shuttle bus to the center, which charged me 200 Kroner/25 USD, getting my first taste of the Norwegian pricing, ouch. Stavanger was more like a town than an actual city, as there were almost no tall buildings, and the central area was a few streets surrounding the port and the park. That was pretty much it. Though I could not make it out too much just from a short glimpse from the bus, I was certain that this could be a very charming town. I got off the bus and the first one to greet me was the cold wind. It sent shivers straight down my spine, reminding me on whose territory I was now on. I started walking towards my hostel, which was actually the only real hostel in town. The others offered private rooms at a stunning price. I think the service industry here in Norway would be better off robbing banks. What I immediately realized was that the streets were clogged with all kinds of casual arts. The brilliant ones really did stand out, bringing me a sense of happiness on this otherwise gloomy day.
After a short walk, the hostel was in my sight, and initially, I could not believe what I was seeing. I only saw a pile of abandoned containers on a plot of land not used by any human being but more likely a dumping ground for industrial waste. The building with the hostel name on it was more like a random pile of giant lego bricks than an actual functional structure. However, I walked in, and was warmly greeted by the owner, and only then was I able to confirm that I was in a hostel. Okay then.
and don’t forget the abandoned cement factory in the back
I took a little stroll in the neighbourhood afterwards, since there was still a lot of daylight given how far north I was! However, I was deterred from venturing too far into the area due to the weather. I thought that in summer Norway would be brilliantly sunny, and beautifully decorated with flowers and rainbow bridges, but I was so wrong, SO WRONG. According to the hostel guys, the only good period in Norway is actually July, and once the calendar turns to August, clouds roll in like how the tourists roll out, and along come with them rain, hail, snow, and the full spectrum of typical Norwegian clusterfuck weather. Saddened by the fact that I did not do enough research that I planned this entire trip around this place just to arrive at the worse time here, I fell asleep in a pool of tears, like my normal “Cry Yourself to Death” Thursdays. However, I was determined to visit the sight I came here for, and it is the one and only Pulpit Rock/Preikestolen, and I would climb on top of it, no matter it was raining, snowing, hailing, unicorn shitting, skittles dropping, or girls actually liking me because it was the end of the world and there was no other choice. I would be up there, not because it was a tourist must-do, but because it was my dream, to fulfill an item on my bucket list, and a promise I made myself.
a building covered with a sentence without spaces, because why not
I woke up to find the weather rather disappointing. The clouds covered the sky completely, but I was certain I needed to go to the Pulpit Rock. Despite all others in the hostel saying that they would do it tomorrow, I was convinced that I could enjoy it. I had to. I made it to the port since it was a simple walk away, and I waited for the earliest ship to the town of Tau. I was there awfully early, wishing there could be an early boat at 6:30, because I knew if I had to get a good view I needed to be up there before the tourist floodgate opened. However, I realized it was a Sunday, and I had no choice but the boat at 7. I was approached by a woman selling the combined tickets of boat+bus, since there would be another bus ride once you reach the bottom of the hike. I gladly took it for 200 kroner, and I was on my way!
the commercial dock at Stavanger, the passenger one is at the other side of the town
The boat was half full, as a lot of people would prefer later boats with better bus connections. The ferry was rather calm and featureless, since it was a normal shuttle ship transporting people and cars as there were no bridges, and there was only a cafe and a small tourist kiosk, which was not open at the time. I was the first one to hop off the ferry, eager to hop onto the bus parked right at the dock so that I would be the first one up on the Pulpit Rock for the day! I wish things can ever go this smoothly in my life… I was kicked off the bus because the ticket I was sold was not for this bus company, but for another bus that would come in 45 minutes. What the actual fuck, ferry company??? You sold me tickets that do not fucking connect? That must be the most ridiculous connection ticket I have had! I immediately decided to pay for a one way ticket on this bus, and hopped on 100 Kroner poorer. I could barely believe the fact that a 15 minute ride would cost as much as 15 dollars… A short nap away, I was at the bottom of the trail, a lot of people driving by themselves were also there, getting ready to climb up. The trail time was about one hour and a half, but for me it was basically a stretch of legs after my trial in Kilimanjaro. I couldn’t care less about the precautions, and I was running up the trail in no time. The hike itself was nice and moderately tiring, but I only had one goal in mind: be at the edge of that rock as early as possible. I passed many people, and caught up with a group of atheletes dressed in professional trail-running clothes running the trail. (duh) They seemed to be in shock as I passed them with my backpack and DSLR camera dangling on my neck. After 40 minutes, I finally saw it, the sharp rocky edge I had been dreaming of for the past few months. I was here!
it seems like the end of the world
I immediately ran up to the edge, and oh boy I thought I had seen heights! 600 meters/ 2000ft drop straight into Lysefjord with no railings or hand bars, but with plenty of sharp rock edges and strong winds, that is not a good place for people with a fear of heights. My legs quickly softened like two giant noodle sticks, and I had to crawl my way towards the edge.
I heard there is a meme group in my school called UCLA Edgy AF Tweens?
The Pulpit Rock, otherwise known as Preikestolen, was actually a giant rock cliff in the shape of a perfect rectangle by the edge of a fjord called Lysefjord. It has a clear drop into the water underneath, and is very famous as a tourist destination. I had been wishing to visit ever since I saw a picture of a guy pondering life at the tip of the rock. It touched me somewhere deep, probably kidney or liver. However, stupid tourists had been flying off the cliffs consistently at the rate of about one per year, making it the deadliest tourist attraction in Norway. It was not really that scary when you look into the distance, as the horizontal perspective ameliorates the sense of how high you were. Thus, I tried my best to look into the distance while shivering in the wind, like this:
However, from time to time your eyes had to look at something else, and once you fixate your eyes down the edge, oh boy your heart better is ready to take a beating. I was literally sitting at a height of a 200-story tall building! There was no adapting to this, and no matter how many times I look down, I could not bear but think of my shoes might come off any second, like this:
I had never heard my heart pounding this vehemently before, except the time when the foodcourt in my local area put on a buy-one-get-one-free sale so I could eat two people’s portions by myself. Partly due to my dream coming true and partly due to me being half meter away from becoming a suicidal building-jumping emo tween, I could barely breathe the air from howling winds coming up from the surface. And quickly a lot more tourists started pouring onto the rock, making me fear it would fall down the cliff as a whole, further adding to the list of things I feared that day. Some of those tourists started screaming that there was a crazy Asian dude ready to say goodbye to the world, but later some actually tried to sit by the edge as well. It was a damn good feeling when you see others back off from the edge, some screaming “I cannot do this!!!” and others simply flipping their middle fingers and going “NOPE NOPE NOPE NOPE” and you just take out your prepared lunch and start eating it 600m high in thin air. This is what I call adventure, do what others don’t want to do, and venture into places others have not even thought of. This is why I travel, and this is why I feel my life is such a grand journey towards the unknown called future.
well, isn’t this a life on the edge?
yes, it sure as hell is
After I finished my salad and bread, I sat by the edge for another hour, and by that time, the entire rock was overflowing with tourists. I felt like if more selfie sticks were brought out of bags, people would start flying off the rock.
seriously, I cannot get this enough, can you? uh, maybe you can…
Because sitting is such a tiring thing to do, especially on the brink of me dying single and lonely, I wrapped up my lunch and carefully stood back up. By this time people already started queuing to take pictures. Seriously this annoys me because I always dreamed the place to be pristine and a place to be free, not lining up for 20 minutes so you could take a selfie with 12 other random strangers in the background. However, there was nothing I could do but leave the area. I knew next time I would have to camp up on the rock for a night, and most importantly, in July, when the sun comes up early and weather is usually better.
look at how many people there were! Chinese Pulpit Rock?
I took my leave and started running downhill, because I wanted to catch the bus on time so that I could connect with the ferry without waiting by the sea like a single lonely bastard crying by the ocean. The trail was clogged like a high blood cholesterol patient’s artery, and I simply sped through most of the people like a rude imbecile I already was. I arrived at the bottom of the hill just in time, and before I realized, I was on the ferry back! The sun came out, as if it was laughing at me for returning home earlier, and suddenly the grey gloomy clouds gave way to blue clear sky.
on the way back
I felt lost after arriving back in the city. I always wanted to sit on top of the Pulpit Rock, but I never thought of what to do next after my dream was realized. Well, what else could beat walking in the streets and looking at the beautiful graffitis? That was exactly what I did. I bought myself some chips, and walked around aimlessly looking at beautifully drawn murals while munching from the can like a starving Asian kid who had never seen potatoes before. The sun would not set until 10, so there was really nothing I could worry about.
I am a disappointment to my mom too, same here, same here 😦
a GIANT teddy bear~ ❤
ha I get it! the dirivative of velocity is acceleration so F=ma! ha! I am so funny! yeah! uh, woohoo?
I returned home exhausted, and the sun was barely setting at 9. I heated up a cup of tea, and watched the sun slowly descend into the horizon: I had not been able to do that since I arrived in London! The next day, the sky decided to throw buckets of water down, so I had to get all drenched walking towards the train station. I took a “quick” train to Oslo, and it was considered quick in Norwegian standards because their railroads go into mountains, from tunnels to bridges, then crazy turns and up and downs and… You get my idea. The 8 hour ride in the day was not the most terrible thing in the world, but the scenery surely made it worthy for the hassle since an airplane ride would only take an hour. Also the ticket was really cheap if you book ahead, while the train ride from Oslo airport into town costs a stunning 200 Kronor for a 15 minute ride, (it is actually the most expensive rail journey per distance in the world) so I saved an airport train ride.
look at it! they have a carriage dedicated to kids! I wanna play too~~!
The train shuttled into Oslo central station in early afternoon, and I followed google map to take a tram. The metro system in Oslo was comprised of underground, buses and the most prevalently, trams. They were all extremely modern and efficient. I was around the corner of my home for the next few days within minutes. All accommodation options in Oslo were incredibly expensive even by Norwegian standards, with a dorm bed shared with 7 others costing almost 50 dollars a night. Now that is some Nordic bullshit. I had to resort to a dorm on Airbnb operated by a woman named Daisy in order to survive. She was very nice and I instantly felt like home, with other 5 people in the room as my family members. I met Jessica from Australia, and Alexandria from USA. After settling in, I decided to go for some food. My hands were tied in this place, as most of the places charged 30 to 40 dollars for a single meal, so I had to resort to my best friend: shwarma. I found a place serving pizza and kebab not too far from Daisy’s place, and I still bled 150 kronor/ 18 dollars for the meal. After the hearty food was devoured, I slept like a newborn puppy in my cozy bed…
I still dream of it one time or another
Next day, I woke up to join Alexandria for a walk down the Opera house. It was probably the most iconic structure in Oslo, and it was definitely one of the best designed opera houses I have ever seen. It was of the color pearl white, and the slightly slanted walkways lead from one side to another, with large rectangular or triangular windows filling the gap. It felt like it was transparent, yet it was not, like coconut jelly. Its location by the sea also brilliantly blended into its white and blue color scheme, and the waves crashed onto the lower floor just like any other beach, though the seaweed washed ashore was not the most beautiful sight to behold…
After that we went for lunch at a crepe place in the hip neighborhood called Grünerløkka, for Alexandria being vegetarian and Nordic culture was not particularly lenient on non-meat eaters. The crepe was simply out of this world, likely because I was on a diet of kebab, shwarma and instant noodles for the past few days. However, it was surely one of the better ones I had had. Just enough cheese to stick out its flavor, and enough avocado to give a different texture.
creme de les crepes
I decided to take a walk afterwards, and I brought myself back to the waterfront. I walked west, and found a nice area where a lot of people were hanging out. I quickly realized most of the people were staring at their phones, which was bizarre. I walked past dozens, if not hundreds, of people sitting by the sea, but looking down on their phones. Maybe I was one of the slower ones, but I recognized it was a nice area for Pokemon Go players only then. As you may have read in my About page, I am a huge Pokemon fan, but I did not dare to play this game, as I realized it could get casual players addicted like this, maybe it would not be the best idea for me to start playing during my travels, or I would not look at anything interesting in places I visit anymore. I carefully walked around groups of people sitting on the ground swiping up on their phones, since I usually try not to disturb other gamers in their natural habitats. However, instead of a mobile game that may as well be pronounced dead by the time I am writing this journal, I got to enjoy a calm afternoon on the Oslo waterfront.
looking at Astrup Fearnley Museet
I also decided to take a swing inside the Nobel Peace Prize museum. It was a must-see while one is in Oslo. I could not believe that I did not see anything regarding Nobel Prizes while I was in Stockholm last year during Christmas. Only the Peace Prize is awarded in Norway, with all the others given in Sweden. Why did Nobel decide it should be the way? He took the reason to his grave, but we followed his last wish nonetheless. Norwegians took great pride of it, however, and claimed that Nobel did not trust the Swedes themselves to be peaceful enough…
Nobel Peace Prize Museum/ Nobels Fredssenter
Inside the building were a lot of exhibitions on all the past laureates, with some rotating exhibitions on a few particular winners. What really stood out was a general timeline that you can scroll through on a dialboard, and a giant touchscreen will then show you to whom the prize was awarded to. Another notable thing was that they really, really loved Liu Xiaobo, the only person with this award who was still incarcerated. (He is a critic of the single party system in China, so…) They even dedicated a huge staircase just for him, check it out.
Hello, Liu Xiaobo (and bye bye, my Chinese readership)
(note from 2018: my blog has been banned in China, so, yay?)
I got out of the museum partially inspired to become a peace fighter and lifetime prisoner in some oppressive regime. I sat by the sea on this chilly afternoon, with nothing too much on my mind. I like this kind of feeling, that you are away from all responsibilities as well as strings. Nobody can yell at you to continue working, or you yourself would not worry about meeting a deadline tomorrow. I felt, free. Liberated, unrestricted, a kind of feeling that I travel so far for. I think only those who have truly enjoyed life can experience this kind of feeling, the true freedom.
old man sharing a drink with a seagull
What was reasonable afterwards was a stroll through Akershus Fortress. The enormous compound on a piece of headland between Opera House and the Nobel Peace Prize Museum had been the defense of the city since its completion in early 1300s. I ventured into the giant brick maze and it was before too long that I discover the strange outfit that the guards wore. In comparison to those I had seen in London, these guys were much more ridiculous despite the British guys were already difficult to top. I could not even dare to describe, but I still have to try because I want to 😛 . The streak of hair/fur was the funniest part, making each of them look like an 15-year-old emo kid. The color scheme of black with black was definitely a help either, along with the strange hat choice and the ridiculously old gun. See for yourself.
I definitely do not want to dress like that
The castle itself is nowadays more of a relaxing park than actually a museum or tourist destination, and it was used for foreign leaders when they were visiting Norway. There was a nice range of statute and sculpture exhibitions, along with a nice organization of flower patterns, but that was pretty much it. It was a relaxing time, though, and how can I complain about that in this hectic 6-month-long journey?
I took a tram back home, and as I was walking from the stop to my bed, the rain poured down like crazy. Like any pedestrian completely caught off guard in this pissing rain, I ran underneath a shop looking for cover. While waiting the sky abomination out, I talked to another local who was shivering with me, and he turned out to be a very nice bloke. He even commented about how much he loved sharing a rain cover with another stranger because that was how the world could bring people that are completely different together, exactly what I was thinking on the inside! We sat side by side, and talked so much, that we did not want to say goodbye even after the rain had stopped. This is the part I love about travelling around the world, meeting unexpected people under unexpected circumstances. This, is why I travel.
rain in Oslo
The next day, I decided to embark on a museum spree, as Oslo definitely had one of the better museum scenes out there, and I was quite guilty for missing out the British Museum because I did not have enough time in London. (do not worry, I took my time the next chance I got to London) I took a bus all the way west, passing the Opera House, Akershus Fortress, and the Nobel Museum, and arrived in an area Bygdøy where museums cluster. I got off at the Viking Ship Museum, and I actually had learned about this place before in my Scandinavian studies in university. This is basically the ultimate heaven for anyone interested in Vikings and Norse culture. Inside this small building, housed one of the most important archaeological discoveries about Viking lifestyle. It was a whole ship used as a burial chamber for one of the more prominent females between 8th and 10th century, and inside of it found many wooden items that were perfectly preserved. The museum was built around the haul of the ship, which was one of the very few ships that was in good shape, and possibly the only major source of all viking ship inspiration.
the main exhibit: a ship from Osberg
We all know that the Vikings were master ship builders, (well, except the King of Sweden I guess…) but this was one of the handful living proofs. Excavated with the boat were four beast heads. They were incredibly intricately detailed, and miraculously well-preserved. Take a look for yourself.
a beast head
All four of them are carefully crafted with different sizes of carving knives, and then nailed with silver nails in equi-distance. The technique was quite advanced at that time, because if there was any crack, the beast head would rot easily after a rain. All four of the beast heads were very similar in style, but slightly different in the kinds of animals they portray, and exact details vary greatly as the themes seemed to shift amongst them.
another beast head
I finally had a great grasp on the Viking seafaring technology, and I moved on to a museum called Kon Tiki museum. What the fuck is it, you ask? Well, it is about a guy sailing a balsa wood raft from Peru to Tuamotu Islands. Why the fuck does it have to do with Norway, you ask? Well, that is a funny story. See, so there was this Norwegian dude, Thor Heyerdahl, his doctoral thesis was a random idea that the Polynesians, especially the guys on Easter Island, could possibly originate from South America, instead of what 99.99% of scholars believed, Asia. What did he have as a proof? Well, there were some archeological evidence that the statues they carved were somewhat similar in style as the folks down in Arequipa, Peru. Aaaaaaaaaaaand that was basically it. So of course he was attacked by peer review into shreds in this thesis, so he, as a stubborn bloke, decided to prove it in the most direct way possible: go to Peru (a country he had never been to), sail from Peru to Easter Island (he did not even know how to swim!), and prove everyone he was right (let’s be honest, he is not). So that was exactly what he did. He set sail from Callao, Peru on April 28th, 1947, with only a radio, a sextant, some charts and a lot of ancient raw materials. The camera recorded everything he did, and guess what? The recording itself won the Academy awards the next year. If you cannot call him a fucking legend, then I really don’t have any idea who is.
his raft, Kon Tiki
After his feat, he seemed to be addicted to it, and later launched a similar reed boat Ra in the year of 1969, and Ra 2, each attempting to sail across Atlantic Ocean, with the latter successful. He did a lot of conservation work later in his life as well, since the sail across Pacific made him some kind of rogue scholar. I left the museum completely stunned, as he definitely deserved a whole museum for himself, as I have never seen anyone like this dude, with so much courage and charisma. I wished I could be like him. (This served as my inspiration to go to Easter Island 2 years later, and I actually got to see where Thor was buried, as his heart, like mine, has always been a part of this big world.) I crossed the plaza to the other side, and there was another museum waiting for me. I was exhausted and I really did not want to visit the museum, as its name sounded like some kind of French dessert: Fram. However, I convinced myself to at least walk inside to check it out, so I did. It was about the boat Fram, and Norwegian polar expeditions in general. This one was different from the Viking ship museum: it was much more informative and less crowded. Trust me when I say that the polar exploration history in Norway is heroic and spectacular. The Norwegians were the first to explore both the Arctic and Antarctic, with Ronald Amundsen, also one of the users of the boat Fram, being the first person ever to reach South Pole in 1912. (You can read much more about him and other Antarctic heroes in my epic journey towards Antarctica, highly recommended.) The journey of Fram was simply legendary. The first explorer, Fridtjof Nansen, found some wreckage of USS Jeanette near Russia, which sank on the other side of the Arctic Ocean while exploring Greenland, so he hypothesized that there must be some kind of current undercutting the Arctic. In order to test his theory, and be further north than anyone had been, he must build a boat that could withstand the ice crushing the haul. He brilliantly came up with the idea to shape the bottom of the boat like a coconut, and instead being crushed by the ice, it would be pushed up instead. This worked, as Fram reached 85° N in 1895. Nansen was celebrated as a national hero, and he later served as a diplomat as well as a peacekeeper on behalf of the Norwegian government, winning him a Nobel Peace Prize.
Fram museum from outside
I ended my day back in my warm bed after a hot shwarma. I was so exhausted that I did not even realize Jessica and Alexandria left in my sleep. I woke up to another gloomy day in Oslo, I went back my way towards the central station, and boarded a train towards Bergen. This was the famous Oslo-Bergen railway, probably one of the most scenic railroad journeys in the world. Despite my seat showing as a window seat on the seat map, I actually got an aisle, to my great disappointment, but ahoy, I was on my way~!
Before I begin, though, I would like to apologize. I always feel I have some kind of responsibility as a blogger to take the best pictures and show the best side a place I have been to, despite my readership basically limits to me, myself, and I. However, in the following section, unfortunately the pictures were not the best. The horrible weather in August in Norway, coupled with strange lighting and dirty windows, all made my pictures somewhat worse than I would like them to be. So please bare in mind, and hopefully understand. Okay, here we go!
After leaving the greater Oslo area, the train started to climb up its way towards the mountain pass, and continued to do so for the next two hours. By that time, the railroad flats out and goes along a beautiful saphire lake.
passin’ a beautiful lake
And immediately afterwards, we started to climb further up, and before too long, we were above ourselves previously and had a stunning panorama of the entire valley we came up with.
climbing up the ridge
water bluer than sky, certainly dyed my iris blue
Within minutes, we were approaching the clouds. We must had climbed about 800 meters at that time. We passed a few smaller stations, with the stop being a brief 30 seconds at most of them. Some houses dotted the way, but mostly there was wilderness, along with lots, and lots, of nothing.
hmm, real estate within meters of public transport, must be expensive
The sun started to get weaker as thick fog began converging on us from all directions, and after a few tunnels climbing up, the only thing I could saw was like this.
I wonder how this would look like when it was all sunny, must be stunning
Lots of waterfalls were dropping on both sides as the snow melted away on the peaks that were still covered by a thick layer of ice, but I bet those would be gone in a few decades. They all converged into this little river going against our direction of travel, and the river went fast, cutting all corners and itself formed a lot of waterfalls.
woah ice in August?
Another long, long tunnel brought us to the mountain pass. Lots of areas were lined with large wooden panels in straight line formations, like giant, two-story-tall fences, and I believe they were for protecting the railroad against avalanches. The train slowly came to a halt at the top, after 4 hours of tiresome climbing, at a station called Finse. Lots of people got off, and even more got on, with all of them tourists, as Finse was close to many nice hiking and mountain biking in the summer, as well as skiing in the winter. However, before all of those people could stuff their bikes onboard, IT STARTED SNOWING. No kidding, snow the size of cheez-it was falling down in August.
It was likely because Finse sits at 1200 meters above sea level, and I was just an extremely lucky (unlucky?) bastard. I gaped at the window in awe, leaving a giant ring of steam on the glass.
After the train left Finse, it started a steep descent into the other side of mountain. We followed a valley as well, accompanied by a small stream. Within the hour, the stream merged with other streams and became a river, and by the time we flatted out on the plateau near Bergen, it was already a full size waterway. The night was drawing close, and the 7 hour train ride was finally coming to an end. I indeed enjoyed the journey, but I just hoped that I could be in the right place at the right time. (trust me I will say this a lot more further down the way) This could easily be the train ride of a lifetime on a perfectly sunny day, with a stop at Finse, but I was unable to make sure of that. I felt lost in some strange way, as if I rolled the weather dice and lost all my bet.
The train came to the end of the line at Bergen central station, which was under heavy renovation at that time. Hundreds of people had to push through small, twisty corridors to escape this nightmare, and by the time I made it out, it was almost midnight. I started walking towards Bergen city center, since the central station was not exactly “central” in Bergen, and taxi was definitely for the rich folks, trust me. I made it to my hostel which was in a very central area, and checked in. This hostel was another kind of torture, besides its incredible price that was commonplace in Norway. The only thing that was within affordable range in Bergen was this hostel’s biggest dorm rooms, and the size of these dorms are…… wait for it …… 50 FUCKING BEDS IN ONE ROOM!!! Yes, I did not type an extra 0, there were literally 50 beds in my fucking dorm!!! For the same price you could get a private room with a garden and an ocean view in Costa Rica, or a wife in Kenya!!! If one person snores in that room, everyone suffers; if one person comes in late at night, everyone suffers. Don’t even think about waking up late, because people leaving at 4 am to catch the plane will definitely make sure they wake you the fuck up. And when you have beds to your left, right, front, back, up, and down, privacy is as far fetched for me as a girlfriend. Backpacking in Norway for three weeks in pain basically costs the same as a comfortable journey in South America for 5 months.
However, I was not deterred by it, or saddened by it, even for one little bit. Because I knew I had had incredible experiences in this country, and the price tag came with a reasonable return of investment. I would definitely choose to stay longer if I had the time, since I found everything in Norway to be so charmingly clean and friendly. The people, the buildings, the water, the mountains… everything was in the color it was supposed to be, without any impurity. This was a country of pure things, and I definitely wanted to make myself surrounded by such kind of beauty. I passed out while looking at my phone, and entered a sweet, sweet dream. What I did not know, however, was that my best dream was about to come true. While I was asleep, my phone flickered alight with an update: “weather tomorrow in Bergen: Sunny.”