Friday, September 18, 2009

Trip to the Netherlands and Norway (part 2)

I got to go to the Netherlands for a conference and Norway to visit my sister Carrie who lives there back in early August, and I am just now getting to putting up a blog about it! This is the second posting about the trip for Norway. The first posting about the Netherlands is below this posting...

My sister Carrie got married a little over a year ago to Kjetil Olsen, my Norwegian brother in law. Since I was so close to Norway after having a conference in Amsterdam, I just had to go visit them for a week. I got to be the first sibling to see them in their native environment and boy were they excited to see me!I was pretty excited too! They immediately flew me out to the coast to a town called Stavanger where Kjetil my brother in law grew up. The town has a monument to a viking battle that took place there in late 800 AD. The monument is of three giant swords stuck in the ground overlooking the bay where the battle between three kings took place. To commemorate my being there I went down into the battle bay and put my foot (toe) in the water.
Another incredible thing I got to do while in Stavanger was to go and climb Preikestolen. This is a giant slab of rock that juts out overlooking a fjord nearly 2000 feet up in the air. Kjetil and I climbed the rocky trail and were NOT disappointed with the view! This counts as probably one of the most amazing things I have ever seen in my life! Another important part of this hike was the time I got to spend talking with Kjetil one on one. You can't take pictures of a conversation, though, so here are the pictures of the view...And yes, I was definitely scared standing at the edge!
After Stavanger, we flew back to where Carrie and Kjetil live (in a town called Drammen), but first stopped at Vigeland Park in Oslo. It is a park designed by one man over the better part of his lifetime that portrays mankind's stages of life in all its many aspects. All the statues are nude and I at first thought I would find it silly, but the symbolism and aesthetic quality of the park overtook me. I particularly liked one tiny sculpture of a skeleton (death) separating a couple. It made me cry to think of all the relationships separated by death. It also reminded me of my own temple sealing and how grateful I should be that my marriage doesn't have to end at "till death do us part."
The time in Drammen was fantastic and below you will see a view from their deck. We ate all sorts of yummy foods and visited a glass factory and went shopping. It was sad to leave but hopefully you can share some of my excitement about being there from my pictures...
My sister posted a fuller set of the pictures that were taken on her blog and if you're interested in seeing them go to:

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