Sleeping Well in Stavanger

During my first week in Norway, I only hit one tiny bump in the road (or train tracks).  SAS was on strike when I arrived, and I had waited to purchase a ticket for the short hop from Oslo to Stavanger, unsure of which day would be best. The price jumped from $110 to $476, so I settled on the night train instead. I gambled and bought the nonrefundable ticket, so OF COURSE the strike settled and the flight prices dropped the next day.

A few weeks ago I heard comedians on Norwegian TV joking about VY, the new  combined train and bus system–would people just forget about the horrible service delays with the new name?  There was criticism of the cost of rebranding everything.  Oh, surely it can’t be that bad, I thought. Then I sat in the Drammen station on Sunday night as many trains were delayed, and the Stavanger train left at 1:30 am instead of 11pm. But thanks to free video calling on WhatsApp, my husband could share that experience!

But the train was comfortable enough, and the very nice personnel distributed thin blankets and (thank goodness) eyeshades. The train pulled in to Stavanger at the scheduled time, which was baffling.

As an aside, another issue joked about at length on the Norwegian show I like, “Nytt på Nytt,” was the design of the new Munch Museum, going up near the Opera House in Oslo (open in 2020). It’s a big gray rectangle, with another slightly tilting rectangle on top of that. Judgement should be reserved, the museum builders say, because it has some sort of remarkable cladding that allows light through it. I’ve decided to reserve judgement on it; I think that light glowing from the interior on dark winter days may make it remarkable.

The new Munch Museum, seen on our Oslo strolling afternoon

The apartment at Frida Hansens Hus is perfect, spare and open and with three large worktables.

As I settled in I felt the need to clean the open kitchen shelves a bit. There are many packets of Turkish (Hungarian?) spices and mixes, and should I want to starch my clothes after using the washer and dryer, there is a can of STIFF (it holds your clothes nice longer).

At 6 pm Ragnhild Wathne came by to take me to the monthly meeting of the Svithun Husflidslag vevgruppe (weaving group). Some things I totally expected, like good treats and that I would be exhausted after talking Norwegian to many enthusiastic people after little sleep on the train the night before.  But I didn’t expect the AMAZING amount of weaving underway.  A whole new post will be coming on that. As a taste, though, a group warp just came off the loom and the pieces were being cut apart.  The beautiful red runner was woven in several variants.