Sunday, 5 June 2011

Friday 3rd June

I have maps of course but I am also using a TomTom satnav which has been very good, especially for guiding me into a particular address or road but I must be careful how I use it. After choosing a destination it will ask whether you want the fastest or shortest route, avoid motorways and also avoid toll roads. I had often used the "avoid tolls" option as the distance was usually about the same but the route looked more interesting. Last night I checked how far Trondeim was and it came up with about 250 miles so thought I would be camping near there however on rechecking this morning I found that this was to avoid tolls and if I paid the tolls it would knock 100 miles off the journey! I decided to pay the toll.

This is Drivstua station. Looks a bit like a model.

Outcome of that was that I arrived in Trondeim about lunch time. First impression was not so good as all the car parks seemed to be full and the on street parking was also full with many cars double parked waiting for spaces, not sure if this was usual or if something special was happening. Finally found a space and made my way to the Tourist Information. "I have two hours, what do you suggest?" Very helpful person gave me a map and showed me a good walk that would involve the cathedral, the old bridge, the colourful waterside buildings and the castle but first to the main bank to cash a traveller's cheque. Hmmmm, second problem. I was directed to take a ticket and wait my turn and after over 20 minutes my turn came. It was if he had never seen an American Express traveller's cheque before, he had to ask various colleagues about it and then came back to say I would have to wait a bit longer for maybe the one person who might know about them to finish in a meeting. he did manage to tell me though that it would cost me about 300 NKr to do, so for cashing a £200 traveller's cheque they would charge me almost £40, no thank you!

I finally started on the suggested walk and my views about Trondeim improved although the climb to the castle was quite a struggle. The steep road going up seemed to have what looked like a single inset rail running by the pavement and on my descent I found it was the world's first bicycle lift that works like a ski lift, cyclists pay using a keycard and are pulled the 430 feet to the top. Looks like I didn't take a photo although no-one was using it anyway. 

The castle is undergoing a major restoration. There was a very poignant memorial in one area dedicated to members of the Norwegian resistance movement who were shot there during the war. Part of the memorial is the remains of the posts they were tied to.

More walking back through the city and I found an antiques and curios shop. If I ever come back I will load the car up with stuff to sell, the prices, like elsewhere in Norway were very high. As an example I was looking at Rorstrand Christmas plates which we can buy for about £10 but here they were being offered at about £35, very popular as well I was told. I had a good chat with the owner about all sorts of things even though he realised that I wasn't going to be buying anything. I told him my experience with the bank after he asked how I liked Trondheim and he said something which was obviously derogatory towards the bank and probably a few swear words but fortunately for my sensitive ears it was in Norwegian. He directed me to a kiosk at the station which cashed the cheque at about the same exchange rate the bank was offering but the extra charge was only about £5.

Just so I can say I have been there.

I also came back.

Time marches on and I started up the E6 northwards again. I had no set campsite to head for and thought I would just keep going as the light was good (of course) and I wasn't feeling tired. When needed I could stop at any of the many off road areas provided. Plenty of signs warning of elk crossing but I have yet to see one, I did see a fox trotting beside the road and have seen many red squirrels and a few deer although no reindeer yet either. They are supposed to be very timid and the slightest smell of a human and they will run away. The commonest birds seem to be of the crow and rook family including magpies although some sort of thrush is often seen as well. I have tried to take photos but as yet they have been too quick although they have been all over Norway including in the parks of Oslo, not the same as our thrush.


Sarah said...

What a wonderful looking station! I'm sure you could make a model of it...
What a helpful Tourist Information person.
What a pain of a bank!
The bicycle lift sounds like fun. If you Google "World's First Bicycle Lift" there's a link with a film of it in use - for those who want to see it in action!
Changing the tone completely - what a moving memorial.
And lighter - but serious again - I'm so glad you came back from Hell!

Big Bruv said...

Hi Little Bruv, we passed thru Hell by train and survived. They even announced in English that the train would be stopping for us specially. Am beginning to recognise quite a few places in your photos. Keep up the great work.