I was surprisingly pleased to be physically capable of supporting my fifty pound backpack after only four hours of sleep. From my couchsurfer's residence in west Bergen, I bused over Michael Krohn's Gate to Central Station and attempted to sleep on the train to Myrdal. Drifted in and out of pseudo-rest for an hour then proceeded to eat oatmeal cookies (for the sugar) and drink all café (for the caffeine) in possession in less than one minute. To my utter disappointment, it didn’t aid the utter physical and mental exhaustion one bit. I then came to the conclusion that this much anticipated journey would end in a disastrous fury. However, I was surprisingly pleased that my body decided to perform otherwise.
The Flambana train ride was absolutely splendid and included the following:
1. Numerous waterfalls, including one with a staged dancing nymph on a hilltop (or, rather, two alternating to create a disappearing affect- thanks to the subliminal mystical enthusiasm of the country).
2. Oh-ing and ah-ing Asian tourists, including one skinny twerp from Thailand repetitively doing spirit fingers at every stop.
3. 180* turn.
Upon arriving in Flam, its obvious that the inhabitants' income is comprised by the train ride as well as the town acting as a base for transport to the surrounding fjords. The brochures, variety of postcards, and tourism center and visitor support system is utterly immaculate. Once one sets eyes on the glistening fjord, you feel that you must be on it. However, a special certification is required to kayak and the fjord day trips must coincide with the limited arrival and departure train times. After deciding that bike rental was the best (and only) option, I rented a bike for 50 NOK from Rahl (as in Dahl), also another hungover being, and took to the streets.
I passed house after house with perfectly painted sides set on sidestreet all with views of rushing water in between the steepest mountains I’ve ever come across. Sheep grazed and their bells rand as they frolicked from salt-cube to salt-cube. I got happily sidetracked down dead-end roads which led to distant names or bridges to hiking trails (Apparently the waters gets its color because it is void of life).
After leaving a mom & daughters knit shop, I passed kindergarten-aged children all sporting neon-construction worker type vests walking down the road. The conversation went something like this:
Imagine a teacher mediating the conversation and a child echoing:
Marcus: What’s your name?
Me: Elyse, what is yours?
Marcus stares with bewilderment, eats flower.
Biked towards fjord park until the path ended, sat on a rock and watched the waterfall in the distance drop endlessly. Hesitantly, I returned bike and boarded the train to begin journey back to Oslo. As we approached Myrdal it began to snow.
If you go, don't miss:
Unable to find the name but the knit shop is near the Flam Kirk (Church)
Bike riding, kayaking, hiking, boating on the fjord