Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The famous Edvard Grieg - June 22 2011

Breakfast sandwich,
Norwegian style
After authentic Norwegian open-face sandwiches for breakfast, we took the tram to Troldhaugen (troll hill), the summer villa of the famous 19th century Norwegian composer. It's a 20-minute ride and then a lovely 20-minute walk through the countryside (ok, suburbs) to his residence.

Olga repeatedly jumping to
distract Grieg at his writing
desk (click to view full size)
I'd never heard of Grieg before, but Olga says he's up there with the other Classical composers of his time, so I suppose he's particularly famous in Russia. In fact, the place was crawling with Russians, the likes of which we haven't seen so far on this trip. We caught a brief lunchtime performance, and I didn't recognize any of the pieces, other than the one Olga has been humming and a snippet I overheard in the gift shop.

Picnicing on Wasa freebies
at Troldhaugen
For the second time in a week, we had an afternoon snack courtesy of Wasa (the Scandinavian cracker company). They seem to be giving away their fruit cup + cereal snacks in tourist hotspots all over Norway and we're often in the right place at the right time.

Grieg mini concert
We've been hearing about the special brown Norwegian goat cheese, and today was our last chance to try it. I've never met a goat cheese I liked outside of Greece, but Olga was determined. We found a kiosk proudly selling the stuff in the fisherman's market, so I'd have something (different) to eat too. The young man selling it seemed surprised to prepare it for us. "Goat cheese? The brown stuff?" "Yeah..." "Oh wow, great!!!" He very excitedly donned what looked like gardening gloves and went to work sawing off a chunk for us (Scandinavians are famously leery of stinky cheeses). We found a place selling good rolls, and a sandwich was made! I had my crab/shrimp sandwich, Olga had her goat cheese sandwich.

The brown goat cheese!
I tried a bite, and the cheese seemed perfectly inoffensive. Afterwards, I saw Olga throw away the knife with which she cut the cheese, while a big chunk still remained. "Don't you want anymore?" Olga shrugged. "But why? You finished the sandwich." "Well, I added A LOT of mustard."

Bergen's cute but overwhelmed
airport (elevator dressed up
like British phone booth)
Uneventful flight from Bergen to Stockholm. Picked up the bag Olga had left in Stockholm - which seemed like a great idea at the time - but this past week she has had a very small variety of things to wear (one long sleeve shirt, sandals, no other shoes). It's hard to predict the weather for all of Scandinavia and narrow it down to just a couple of outfits.

Multinational dinner
Went to take a walk and grab a small bite. Almost every restaurant's kitchen was closed at 10:15pm, including one who seated us, gave us full dinner menus, then came back to take our order and were surprised we were ordering food. Ended up eating at Pickwick Restaurang. Olga noticed that were are American- and Russian-born travelers sitting in a British pub in Stockholm drinking German hefeweizen and eating traditional Swedish cuisine being served by a waitress from Gdansk Poland.

1 comment:

mizzkg said...

I loved the story about the restaurant that allows you look at menus but doesn't allow you to order food. LOL funny!
I guess it wasn't funny at the time though. :(