A Sojourn in Germany – Part 4

After a lovely few days, it was time to begin the journey home.

We started by stretching the hour and a half drive to Berlin with some detours to visit some places of interest along the way.

First stop was Rheinsberg, a pretty little lake side town, once home to Fredrick the Great. However, our attention was initially caught by an ice cream shop offering more than 365 flavours. They even have a web site. I really enjoyed mine, until the last couple of mouthfuls, when it became apparent that they didn’t always wash the machine between flavours. So I suddenly got a burning in my mouth, which turned out to be chocolate chilli! At least Sarah had some of her’s left, so I got to ‘cleanse my palette’.


After driving through rolling countryside with forest, farms and lakes, we arrived at our lunch destination of  Neuruppin. Broadly leafy streets and diverse architecture made for a couple of hours pleasant wandering. We ate lunch at a street-side restaurant, visited the main church and walked by the lake.

And then to Berlin where we caught a flight to Oslo and a night in an airport hotel.


Return to the Frozen North

After a week of sunshine, temperatures up to 26C / 79f, we overnighted in Oslo (still a ‘respectable’ 14C / 58f) and then boarded the plane back to Bardufoss. As we headed north the clouds parted and we were treated to some wonderful views over Lofoten and Senja.

This is Stetind (sometimes call the Anvil), and often referred to as Norway’s National Mountain. To see a stomach churning video of just how steep it is, click here. 1392m / 4567 feet straight up from the sea.

We passed by Lodingen, where our friend Christopher Briggs lives and works:

The view of the Lofoton archipeligo stretched at least 125 km / 80 miles. Zoom in on this picture and see how many rows you can count.

The view gave way to the southern end of Senja, then the northern peaks of Breitind and Astritind:

We flew past Finnsnes and our neighbouring town of Søreissa:

Quite a journey, and a lot more snow than is usual for the end of May! It was 5C / 41f when we landed.

Note: because the windows were a bit gunky on the plane, all photos are enhanced, and a bit too blue.

A Sojourn in Germany – Part 3

The German Lake District was our day out today. We hired a motor launch and chugged across a couple of lakes:

We encountered a variety of different boats, including a human powered paddle steamer and a caravan boat, and a selection of alternatively powered canoes:

We had lunch at to an outdoor food and drink area. Waited an hour for a fresh cooked hot dog:

There was a good variety of wildlife:

Given that we were not in Bavaria, there was an understandable ban on mustaches:

Today is Ascension Day, which is a public holiday in Germany, and we saw literally hundreds of people in canoes:

And a few more pictures of the lakes and our multi-colour life jackets:

We rounded out the day with a dip with the fish in another local lake and a quick walk in the forest.

All in all, a lovely day!

A Sojourn in Germany – Part 2

Whilst Sarah and Tracy enjoyed a spa day, Tim and I headed for the organ museum at Malchow Abbey. An impressively renovated church building and modern entrance hall are very inviting. But then we went in. Oh dear. The smell of mouldy hymn books, one fully functional organ (the original church instrument) which sounded nice, but played rather haltingly by a guest organist, a couple of smaller instruments which apparently worked but were not in use, a ‘see-through’ demo instrument with a big ‘do not touch’ sign, and a lot of junk!

A Sojourn In Germany – Part 1

This week we are in Germany as guests of our friends Tim and Tracy. Tis is a welcome break in the hecticness which is May in Norway.

We are in the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern area, which is very reminiscent of the Norfolk Broads, a flat / rolling landscape with many lakes, interconnected by rivers. It’s not quite as open because of the forests, and obviously the architecture is quite different. But still . . .

We have enjoyed a day in the old administrative centre, Neustrelitz. Ice cream in the town square (which is a circle with radiating streets), the main church (very large, a little unloved and cold, with a nice organ we didn’t play), buildings in a variety of architectural styles, and an odd advert for a theatre company: