News and Views

From my kids accomplishments, to my heretical perspective of the world

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June 28th, 2008 · 3 Comments

We arrived in Oslo, Norway early this morning after a little rougher than normal night. It’s probably because the ocean south of Oslo is not as protected as most of the Baltic is; there’s a straight shot to the North Atlantic for one stretch.

Oslo has a concentrated downtown, like most cities, but the subarbs seem to be very spread out, with houses dotting the hills all around. Oslo is located at the end of a long fjord (narrow inlet from the sea). In many fjords the mountains rise dramatically out of the sea surrounding a narrow inlet, but the Oslo fjord is wide with gentle hills around. That’s probably why it makes a good port and location for a city.

We went to the Maritime Museum today. The guide seemed most interested in showing us a ship that a Norwegian explorer had taken into the Artic between Russia and the pole, and it was pretty interesting. But I begged off from the rest of her talk and went next door on my own to the Kon Tiki exhibition. That was really neat. Two of Thor Heyerdahl’s boats are there — the Kon Tiki and the Ra II. There was also a copy of one of the Easter Island statues — Heyerdahl created a cast from plaster of paris, then duplicated the statue here in Norway. This was all fascinating. I remember reading Kon Tiki, his account of his expedition, and being very interested both in his theories and the adventure.

As I recall, recent DNA testing has either proved or (I think) disproved his theories, that Polynesians might have come from South America. But that doesn’t diminish his accomplishments.

Roald Amundsen was also represented some at the museum — he also is a national hero, of course.

To get to the museum we “sailed” on a 120-year old sailing ship (retrofit with a diesel engine, of course…) for about an hour across and around the fjord, which except for the interminable throbbing of the engine was very pleasant. It would have been nicer to have done it under sail power, but I guess less reliable for a tour on a strict schedule.

The cruise ship left port mid-afternoon bound for Copenhagen. We disembark at 7:15 in the morning, off to the airport, then back to hot, hot Tempe. It’s been a nice cruise. We wish the kids could have enjoyed it with us, but I guess we have to get used to traveling without them sometimes.

Tags: Family Updates

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Mom // Jun 28, 2008 at 2:01 pm

    It sounds as though it has been a good vacation–different from what you usually take. Now we will expect many, many pictures, with explanations, by the end of next week. Aren’t you glad that you don’t have to go back to work?

    Don’t worry about the heat; the 110º days are gone, at least for one day. It was only 109º yesterday.

  • 2 Dianna // Jun 29, 2008 at 7:55 am

    We’ve enjoyed reading about travels in an area none of the rest of us have visited. Have a safe flight back home. (Well, except for us in Denmark for a day or so 38 years ago.)

  • 3 Don // Jun 30, 2008 at 6:20 am

    Are you back in Tempe?