Norway (Day 2, Part 1)

June 19

Oslo

Reminder, where we were in the world . . .

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[So you don’t have to refer back to day 1, here’s the schedule for day 2 . . . ]

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[We walked to meet our sightseeing tour.  But before we left the hotel, the Super wanted to be “throned” . . . ]

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[And here was our sculpture in the lobby.  In fact, as far as I could find, it is known as the sculpture in the lobby . . . ]

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[It’s rather unique, but somehow I missed it when we first entered the place?]

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[I mean, the guy doesn’t even have any legs?]

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[Outside, the Oslo Opera House is right across the street.  The Norwegians are known for being descriptively basic in naming things – this is an opera house, it’s in Oslo, hence it is the Oslo Opera House . . . ]

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[Now because this is art (in the water outside the opera house), a basic descriptive name doesn’t necessarily follow.  She Lies is a public sculpture by Monica Bonvicini of stainless steel and glass panels measuring approximately 12 metres (39 ft) by 17 metres (56 ft) by 16 metres (52 ft).

The sculpture with Oslo Opera House in the background.  It is a permanent installation, floating on the water in the fjord on a concrete platform, rising 12 metres (39 ft) above the water surface.  The sculpture turns on its axis in line with the tide and wind, offering changing experiences through reflections from the water and its transparent surfaces (Wikipedia).]

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[The opera house . . . ]

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[The Nomadic art project where 1000s of shirts hang outside on gigantic wooden poles at the SALT venue (that brings together art, music, food and architecture with spectacular wooden constructions inspired by the traditional Norwegian racks for drying fish) . . . ]

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[We left early enough to take a non-direct route to our sightseeing bus . . . ]

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[By all appearances, definitely Norwegian . . . ]

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[We’re getting a little military bent here in the neighborhood of . . . ]

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[Akershus Fortress (or Akershus Castle) is a medieval castle that was built to protect and provide a royal residence for Oslo, the capital of Norway.  The castle has also been used as a military base, and is today a museum, open for public (Wikipedia).]

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[It is not known exactly when the construction of the castle started but it is believed that it took place around the late 1290s, by King Haakon V.  It was constructed [when] it became clear city’s existing defences weren’t effective and therefore, a stronger defensive centre was needed.  The fortress has successfully survived all sieges, primarily by Swedish forces (Wikipedia).]

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[This large 1970 sculpture is located just inside the entrance to the Akershus Fortress and is by Gunnar Janson. It depicts a huge towering nude woman standing next to a much smaller man who stands naked on a raised block. The pair are in front of an abstract blob-like object.  It is called “Nasjonalmonumentet for ofrene fra andre verdenskrig” or “National monument for victims of World War II” (www.waymarking.com).]

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[Within the fortress . . . ]

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[Shooting from the pedestrian crossover in the following photo . . . ]

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[Anne and Bill on said pedestrian crossover . . . ]

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[Inside the fortress . . . ]

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[A horse’s . . . well, you know . . . ]

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[Barnacle geese . . . ]

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[Anne on the trail to the top of the fortress . . . ]

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[Getting high enough for some views . . . ]

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[Kinda looks like our neighborhood . . . ]

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[The double towers (the right one with a clock) center right is City Hall, our destination for catching our tour . . . ]

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[There must be guards . . . ]

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[And there he is, in all his spiffiness . . . ]

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[Not the same horse as previously exposed . . . ]

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[We’ve wandered back onto the streets again – with Sculpture of the Hand of King Christian IV . . . ]

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[This statue is titled “Piperen in Pipervika” (English: Piper in Pipervika), and it was created by Norwegian artist Dyre Vaa in 1972. The statue is located between the Oslo City Hall and the Akershus Fortress. Although this area of Oslo is called Vika, Pipervika was formerly the name given to the area where this statue is located because the military pipers (flutists) from the Akershus Fortress lived here (www.waymarking.com).]

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[Six sculptures elevate common tradesmen to works of art at Oslo City Hall . . . ]

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[Women and children by artist Emil Lie at City Hall Square (Norwegian: Rådhusplassen) with Oslo City Hall in background . . . ]

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[Exterior sculpture and fountain (built in 1931 by Arneberg and Poulsson) outside the City Hall . . . ]

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[Memorial plaque to Fridtjof Nansen and the Nansen passport on an exterior wall of Oslo City Hall . . . ]

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[And now on the front side (?) of City Hall . . . ]

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[And now we have begun the bus tour.  Stuff is happening here . . . ]

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[Henrik Ibsen, playwright, National Theatre, through the bus window . . . ]

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[Grand Hotel, and indeed, it looks pretty grand . . . ]

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[Parliament building drive-by . . . ]

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[And a drive-by of The Hand . . . ]

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[A ferry, likely to Denmark . . . ]

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[And a “shirt” drive-by . . . ]

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[A busy time at the Opera House as the crowds move about on the exterior “ramps” . . . ]

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[And She Lies, again . . . ]

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[And the entry area to the Opera House with She Lies in the background . . . ]

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[Seem to waiting for permanent placement in the vicinity of the Opera House?]

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[The train station (didn’t even have to look it up) . . . ]

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[In Roman mythology, Fortuna was a goddess of good or bad luck. Her statue mounted at the wall of Rica Oslo Hotel pictures her with two of her traditional attributes: a sail and a globe, symbolizing the fate and the chance. The statue has been placed there in 2005 (www.waymarking.com).]

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[The original hang glider?]

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[King Christian IV, known for making a “bird-on-the-hat” fashion statement . . . ]

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[The 2nd photo ever taken of this fountain statue.  The 1st didn’t identify it either . . . ]

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[But it was in this neighborhood . . . ]

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[Construction and re-construction – the nature of the beast everywhere we’ve been the last few years . . . ]

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[Either a famous Norwegian or a character in a “Harry Potter” novel . . . ]

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[As the sign says, the Norwegian Nobel Institute . . . ]

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[And now we’re going up to the Hollmenkollen . . . ]

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[We’re on the switchbacks going up the mountain . . . ]

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[Our tour guide told us that the physical activities-crazed Norwegians attempt to bike to the top of this mountain without ever letting their feet hit the ground . . . ]

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[Holmenkollbakken is a large ski jumping hill.  It has a hill size of HS134, a construction point of K-120, and a capacity for 70,000 spectators.  Holmenkollen has hosted the Holmenkollen Ski Festival since 1892, which since 1980 have been part of the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup and 1983 the FIS Nordic Combined World Cup.  It has also hosted the 1952 Winter Olympics and the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in 1930, 1966, 1982, and 2011.  The hill is the most popular tourist attraction in Norway, and has roughly one million visitors each year (Wikipedia).]

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[This is a pretty awesome piece of construction, so I gave it a few shots . . . ]

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[View from there . . . ]

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[Boy, doesn’t this look like it would be fun . . . NOT!!!!!   A little gust of wind and you end up in grandma’s lap in seat 4, aisle 12!]

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[The Troll Sculpture Kollentrollet . . . ]

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[You should see all the ones I didn’t post . . . ]

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[Say, WHAAAAA????]

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[Serious issues with head alignment with the opening . . . ]

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[The famous Norwegian arctic explorer – we’ll see more of him along the way . . . ]

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[Where we were in relation to where we weren’t . . . ]

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[Wow!!!  They’re flying!]

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[Our wheels . . . ]

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[Our guide Helen directing back on the bus . . . ]

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[A final good-bye to the jump – we’ll continue the day in the next post . . . ]

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Even without the fence this story had an element of farce.  Thousands of migrants crossed Norway’s Arctic border by bike last year, because by law they could not go over by foot.  ~  Howard Johnson, BBC  [Apparently Norwegians are mocking efforts to build a fence between Norway and Russia.]

Up Next:  The day continues . . . [An aside: as I was just typing a clap of thunder just about bounced me off my stability ball!]

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