Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Tales: Charlotte's Holiday!

Hi Everyone!

You may (or may not, haha) have noticed that my blog has been a little low on posts recently, and whilst I apologise for not keeping you all up to date with my nail based ramblings, I have a valid excuse.

I've had myself a holiday! Woot!

Well, not just me, the Mr. too, seeing as it was his Dad and Step-Mum we were visiting!

They live in the oldest town in Norway, a lovely place called T√łnsberg. During the trip, they also flew us to Northern Norway, to the beautiful region of Lofoten. We stayed on Store Molla for a few days, and enjoyed a typical Norwegian fishing holiday!

During our time away, I had no real opportunity to keep up with painting my nails - so this will be a polish-free post. However, I would like to share a few pictures from our trip!

The view from my window on the plane on our way to Norway. We flew at 7:10 am. Which was painful. And very early. And did I mention painful? But still, the cotton wool clouds looked beautiful, soft and comforting - even for a wimp like me who HATES flying.

The T√łnsberg Kommune have commissioned a replica Viking ship to be built, along the city centre waterfront. This amazing replica has been hand built by volunteers, and using only the tools that the Vikings themselves would have had access to, which is pretty stunning considering the detail of the carvings. The original ship had been found buried in a Viking Burial mound, with the corpses of two women inside it! I wonder how they ended up there...?

Again, I couldn't help myself on the flight to Evenes Airport. By the way, airlines - if you are reading this, Norwegian Air get it so right. Free WiFi, comfortable seats and proper leg room.  On a budget airline. Even the steps to get on the plane are awesome. (I have an issue with stairs I don't know. They fox me, the pesky buggers! They make me feel like I'm going to fall off them - but as soon as I get used to them, I'm fine! Overshare lol!) Anyway, large, foot sized steps, that are comfortably close together and don't feel rickety when you climb them. Yes Ryanair, I'm looking at you with your wobbly death trap steps!

A random snap from the car window, as we were crossing a huge bridge near Harstad. The blues of the water were stunning. So clear, and beautiful, and slightly tropical looking. Shame the water is actually freezing!

These two pictures were taken at around 23:30 pm local time in Store Molla, Lofoten. Yes, that's half an hour to mid-night, and yes, it's still daylight outside.  For about three months of the year, the have what they call the 'Midnight Sun', as they are so close to the Arctic Circle. The Sun doesn't 'set' enough for it to go fully dark; it only appears 'dusky' as the Sun is hidden by the mountains surrounding us! This is as dark as it gets, which was a bit of a shock to my system. Thank God for blackout curtains...!

Where else on Earth can you see white sands and clear, tropical blue waters surrounding by snow peaked mountains? This is a secluded beach in Brettesnes, on Store Molla, and has to be one of my favourite ever beaches. It's beautiful. Truly, naturally beautiful. Call me mushy, but it was breathtaking. And majestic. And, dare I admit, it was the type of place you would expect to see characters from Lord of the Rings running about, complaining about the lack of second breakfasts and trying to throw away jewellery.

The water on this beach was so clear. The water actually starts at the bottom edge of the picture, but it's almost impossible to tell. I don't think it's even that clear straight from my tap!

During the trip to Lofoten, we were told to expect temperatures of around 10 - 15 degrees Celsius. No problem, I thought. I've lived through many British Summers - I can do cold.
Except, for two days we had temperatures around 20 degrees. Unusually warm, they said. 
I didn't pack for Summer, I said. Even so, it was lovely. The water was exceptionally calm, which was great for a wimpy boater like me. We caught many fish, and ate a lot of it! For any fish lovers, you have not lived until you have eaten fish caught on the same day. It's wonderful! 

The Mr. redeemed himself by catching a huuuuge cod - the last time we went over to Norway, I managed to catch three fish, and he caught none... Even though it was my first ever time fishing! This time, I caught four smaller fish, and he caught a beast of a cod! He truly beat me this time haha!

We also caught an elusive and rather nasty Wolf Fish.

Taken from Wikipedia - I forgot to photograph the ugly blighter!

As you can see from the picture of the skull, this beast has rather nasty teeth, and is capable of crushing human bones if it gets hold of you. It might be ugly, but it sure is tasty.

We were also lucky enough to spot a wild Sea Eagle, which nest in the surrounding islands. Unfortunately, he wasn't as pleased to see us as we were to see him, so I don't have a decent picture to share. I'm just happy that we were lucky enough to see one!

This might be somewhat different to your typical holiday - certainly not touristy, no tacky gift shops, and unfortunately, no 2 for 1 cocktails. I may not have a tan to show for my time away, but I have come away with fantastic memories. And a smile on my face at having done something different, and having seen what has to be one of the most beautiful places on the planet.

I hope you have enjoyed this slightly different post! Not a nail in sight...!

Thanks for reading,

Love Charlotte x

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