After a week in Bergen, we drove 3,5 hours southwards, to the isle of Karmøy, where my mother and two sisters live. We were greeted on the parkinglot by my niece (9) and nephew (6). True Kodak moment, one of those one doesn´t have time to take a picture of, coz one is too busy hugging. 🙂
Following day we celebrated great grandma Else´s 83 years´ birthday at her place, bringing a guitar and birthday songs in Danish as well as the Norwegian one. Wonderful to see her and great grandpa again.
Day after that, we went out, all 13 of us, kids of my mom´s with husbands and kids. Day was dreary, as has been most of our Norwegian/Danish Summer so far this year… but we put rainclothes on, and off we went, first to a small, local zoo, a quaint place with interesting architecture and flowers as well as animals from all over the world…
This is the black swan I also photographed there 5 years ago, and used as an illustration in my book…:
After the zoo, we went for a picnic. Luckily in this beautiful local nature park, there is this stage with a roof over it, so we sat on dry benches enjoying all the food that grandma had prepared for us.
After eating, we played different games, spinning people around with a binbag around them, for example, to see if they could find their way to a designated table…stuff like that. Lots of fun, when adults fell over…
Apart from that day out, we visited my youngest sister´s newly finished house. Job well done indeed.
And I got an evening at my girlfriend Alice´s place, catching up on our lives´ events, haven´t seen her since 2013.
We also spent a whole day at an other girlfriend´s place, Hege, whome I used to live with in Bergen in my student days. She has a French husband, and they have two lovely sons age 12 and 6. Wonderful to hang out, eat together and catch up.
On our way back from their place, we passed Avaldsnes Church, from a different angle than usual.
It was the church of King Harald Fair-Hair, who gathered Norway into one kingdom, beating down all the small independent viking kings. He was nicknamed Hair-Fair (Hårfagre) because of his vow not to cut his long hair before Norway had become one united kingdom.
The site of the church was the capital of Norway in viking times.
As it was a place where every ship had to sail by on its way to the Norwegian coast.
In more recent historical times, Karmøy is the place in Norway where the most people emigrated from, and went to seek a better life in America. My grand dad was the only one of his mother´s children who stayed in Norway with her. All five of his siblings went on board “the America-boat” and I don´t think their mother ever saw them again.
Here are some close-up images from outside and inside the church. A videopoem I made in 2011.
(1:45-2:15 into the video, if you are too much in a hurry to watch the whole song).
Our whole week on Karmøy was basically spent hanging out with family and friends. Much needed.
Here is the view from my mom´s balcony:
My husband even swam in the sea there, one of the days where the sun was actually out and about!
To me that sea will always remain too cold for that kind of activity.
Here is the view in the other direction one fine evening:
We had a lot of lovely time together with my mom, grandma.
For example, her and Linus-Ferdinand played a game where she lit candles and he blew them out and she “got cross” and lit them again… he found it hilariously funny. 🙂
And one evening, we shared a big meal of prawns and crab claws on bread with mayo and lemon, a traditional Norwegian Summer meal. We moved on to singing and dancing, and I filmed this little piece, which I think will go into family history due to its degree of happiness expressed, and not least my very… engaged… singing style… 🙂
The song is a Norwegian pop classic called “Next Summer” by De Lillos. About how we will meet again and talk about the same old things and drink wine together again…next summer…
I took this great one too, of my kids:
We had a fabulous week at grandma´s. Sad that we live so far apart.
But good that we all try our best to visit eachother whenever we can.