Thursday, August 25, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Edvard Grieg

Before departing Bergen, we visited Troldhaugen, the home of Edvard Grieg, Norway's famous composer.  We were treated to a piano concert in the nearby concert hall.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Bergen

Bergen is Norway's second biggest city and a former capital.  It is on the west coast, surrounded by mountains (hence the name) and at the end of a long fjord.  Bergen is a major port city for cruise ships, pleasure craft and ships serving the nearby offshore oil and gas platforms.  
I boarded my cruise ship in Bergen.

Bergen has a law that every visitor must photograph these old wooden storefronts.

Oil is Norway's biggest export.  Second are colorful wool sweaters with snowflake patterns.

Norway has the finest manhole covers in the world, bar none.

Starbucks has snatched a prime waterfront location for its coffee shop.

A statue in a prominent Bergen square honors Ludvig Holberg, Baron of Holberg, a historian, essayist, poet and philosopher who is considered the founder of Danish and Norwegian literature.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Out the Train Window, from Oslo to Bergen

Did you ever try shooting photographs out of the window of a fast-moving express train?  With spots on the window making unwanted blurs on your pics?  And with trees and utility poles 
jumping into the frame just as you pressed the shutter?  And with errant lights
 from inside the train finding their way into your shots?  

Me, too.

But, the Norwegian countryside is beautiful.  It was well worth trying.  Some decent pix emerged.

Snow in the mountains in August!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Downtown Oslo

Oslo is drop dead gorgeous.  Find a comfortable seat.  I have 215 photos to show you.

OK.  Just nine.  Karl Johans gate is a long park-lined street filled with restaurants, shops, government buildings and other major buildings.  And people.

I told you.  Lots of people.

The Royal Palace sits at the far end of Karl Johans gate.

Stortinget, the building housing Norway's Parliament, is about half way down Karl Johans gate.

Some of the stores are in lovely old buildings that would be at home in Paris.

The National Theater -- a handsome classical building with statues everywhere -- is near the west end of Karl Johans gate.  Henrik Ibsen is at the left side, over that woman's shoulder.  

Other statues outside the National Theater are of artists best known to Norwegians. 

There was a mouth-watering crafts show at the side and rear of Oslo Cathedral.  I asked this potter if she dies her hair every day to match her dresses.  "Yes."  What will it be tomorrow?  "Blue."

There was a Pakistan exhibition.  This is the side of a richly painted wagon.  And a tourist.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Oslo Museums

A ferry from Aker Brygge -- Oslo's rebuilt waterfront -- leads to the nearby peninsula of Bygdøy,
home of numerous popular museums.  The Norway Folk Museum is a big complex featuring numerous old buildings taken apart in their original locations around Norway and rebuilt here. 

These two storehouses from Telemark (200+ miles west of Oslo) were brought 
to the museum in 1898, the same year the museum opened on Bygdøy.

A 13th century stave church is a highlight of the museum's collection.

Interpreters like this baker work in some of the buildings.

A five minute walk brings visitors to the Viking Ship Museum.  Three 9th century wooden Viking ships sit inside this museum, along with artifacts found with them.  This is the Oseberg Ship, dated to 834 A.D. or earlier.  It was found early in the 20th century buried at a farm 60 miles south of Oslo.

The Fram Museum contains two ships used by Fritdjof Nansen, Raold Amundsen and others to explore the North and South Poles in the 10 years either side of 1900.  The Fram (above) pushed its way far into the ice near both poles, and teams went the rest of the way with dog sleds and skis. 

A six person team led by Amundsen used the Gjøa to navigate a Northwest Passage
 in the Arctic Circle from 1903 - 1906. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Out of the Jurisdiction: Oslo

Got here late yesterday afternoon, so I am just getting my bearings.  Staying on Tjuvholmen (Thief Island), where the big thing is the Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art,
designed by Renzo Piano.  

Lots of public art, including next to a high tower for brave divers -- and less brave divers 
whose friends taunt them until diving is a better option than climbing down. 

Maybe tomorrow I will know more about that interesting building behind the boats.

And this one.