So, the day had finally come to leave the UK and begin our journey to Norway. I can’t say it went as smoothly as we hoped. I realised this as, after I had half fell out of bed, I caught a glimpse out of the window to see a blanket of snow. This was followed by a steady stream of prawn-craker esque snow that continued to fall. Add this to the anticipated arrival of the fixer-of-boilers, as well as the pressing need to finish packing for Norway, and I may have been a teensy bit stressed. Especially as Luke was still packing half an hour before we had to leave the house (told you!). However, the Murray Parents saved the day as they were kind enough to stay in our slightly chilly house to await the fixer-of-boilers . We were then able to leave our lovely house to begin our journey to the airport. This involved a quick stop for a hug with the grandparents, and covertly check they had their fire on and didn’t need milk, because if you ask them if they need anything they say no and then you find out later they have made an Artic-like expedition to the shops!It was then time to be driven to the airport with all of our bags. In total we had two rucksacks, two carry on bags, three suitcases and two lap top cases. It was ridiculous! but, as Luke was laughing at me, I pointed out the merits of my packing and how, as we were moving for two years, it could have been a lot worse. I don’t think he appreciated my analysis as he had difficulties trying to wedge the items into his boot earlier. Luckily he was able to fit all the cases in otherwise it would have been a long walk for me to get to the airport in time!
Once we had said all our goodbyes it was time to say goodbye to our luggage which, thankfully, was not overweight. Then we braced ourselves for security and began our descent further into the airport. I hate this part of travelling and this hatred always appears justified. Not only was I held up in the queue, due to the man in front not being allowed to take his duty-free items with him, but Luke overtook me! Even worse? both him, and the security guard dealing with him, were laughing at me as he sailed through security whilst I was still waiting to place my items in the boxes. The guard even joked with Luke and directed a “nice one Luke ” to him as he skipped ahead of my queue informing me that “Luke had made a wise move Lucy”. Well yes Mr Security Guard he may have made a good move getting ahead of me but he would still have to face me on the other side! so maybe not the wisest move Luke had ever made! However, this sentiment floundered as I was finally accepted through to the next round of security only to set of the first alarms. Consequently, I then had to go through another detector; then I had to remove my shoes; and then I had to have body search. Meanwhile, back in the land of the other ‘Lu’, Luke had sailed through and was waiting for me at the other side. This incident did nothing to improve my experiences with going through security at Manchester Airport! Then the ultimate gooey icing on this particular cake was when I was informed that I was not allowed the three bags of liquids, which Luke as a frequent flyer had informed me would be fine, and would have to fit them into one bag. Oh no, only one bag! Deep breaths.
We finally made it onto the plane and I began to relax a little bit more, especially as the food was served. It was a lovely salmon and rice concoction. Although I had to cajole Luke into eating it. I did this by informing him he had to get used to it as we were moving to a place where fish formed its main food staple. He did then eat it the fish and the rest of the flight was rather pleasant. However, we ended up the last ones on the plane as I could not find my passport. Luckily, I eventually found it and we entered the Copenhagen airport that was full of wood and leafy plants, typically Danish I thought. There was then a few jokes from the security guard after he noticed I now have to wear glasses, which did wonders for the self-esteem, and then it was on to the hotel. Thankfully, I had resisted the urge to joke back with the security guard as I knew I really did need to be allowed to stay in the country for the night.
The hotel was lovely and we even got a dressing gown each! I am easily pleased I know, I even had trouble sleeping in my anticipation of the hotel breakfast! You can tell I don’t stay in hotels often! The breakfast didn’t disappoint as I was able to have cheeses and ham, as well as a huge vat of coffee.
It was then a struggle back to the airport to get on our final plane. We stopped for a juice along the way at ‘Joe and the juice’ where they shout your name when your order is ready. Unfortunately, just I was trying Luke’s drink the waiter then shouted ’Luke’ . Turns out I was trying the wrong drink…. there was then an embarrassed silence and swopping of drinks.
Luckily, we made it without any mishaps untill it came to opening my milk, for my coffee, whilst we were on the plane. The poor gentleman sat next to me got spattered with drops of milk as I opened my carton upside down. Thankfully, he appeared to see the funny side (I think) and refused my embarrassed attempt to offer him a napkin. He then looked slightly concerned when I asked for another coffee but as I asked Luke to open the next one for me he visibly seemed to relax. I must remember never to open milk on a plane again, unless it is completely empty! The plane that is, not the milk carton
We arrived safely in Norway, The Avis man agreed, somewhat amusedly, that we would definitely need a bigger car than a beetle as he peered his head above the desk to take a look at the two trolleys full with our bags!
After we fitted in all of our suitcases into the hire car, we were on our way through the stunning scenery to Aalesund. The best thing about the drive? apart from the views I was reunited with seat warmers! Heaven.
It really was stunning and I still cannot believe this will be our new home. What I also cannot believe is how expensive it is! After checking in to the Quality Hotel, we had a meeting with a very nice lady who told us all about the things we needed to know we went for a lovely dinner at Anno. I had only meant to get one glass of wine, honest! but as he brought the wine over and asked me if it was ok I began to worry slightly.
This worry intensified when I saw Luke’s alarm bells go off after the waiter asked me to taste the wine before pouring me a full glass. Luke then asked the waiter how the wine system worked and if they just charged by the glass, to which the waiter replied along the lines of you ordered the bottle you would have to pay for it so would you like a glass. Luke almost choked a quiet ‘yes please’ back and took a very, very long drink, whilst I was racking my brain to work out what the cost of the bottle was. I apologised profusely and then we found out at the end how much it was. I almost fell off my very high chair (a high stool not a child’s chair, don’t worry , even though I am in the region of giants and vikings it doesn’t appear that I am unusually short, i don’t think). I am sure I heard the man sitting behind us giggling to himself as we debated the cost of the wine and tried to justify it to ourselves. I now know never, ever, to order anything that might appear in a bottle instead of a glass. Ever. Seventy Pound! It hurts just to think about it. I have never spent that much on a meal out let alone just the drinks! I needed the wine just to get over the shock and Luke did his best Victor Meldrew impression, although I don’t think he meant to, as he proclaimed “I don’t believe it!” . However, we did have a very nice meal regardless.
I was even served cloudberry chutney with my cheese!
Well, you must have cheese with red wine… at least that is what I told Luke!. It was then time to absorb the shock of the price of one bottle of wine. The flurry of snow was enough to sober us up as we made our slippery way back to the hotel and, as we raved about the lovely food we had eaten, we also made a vow to only stick to spirits in the future.
- Perils Of Packing (lhgardener1988.wordpress.com)