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Beautiful Norway ... and a trip back home
    Quelle: http://www.khrystyna.wobistdujetzt.com

Zunächst ein paar einleitende Worte:

Gestern bekamen wir den Link zu einem Vulkanascheerfahrungsbericht von einer sehr guten Freundin - und jetzt wird es kompliziert, aber es hilft bestimmt etwas zum Verständnis - die:

    - ursprünglich aus der Ukraine kommt
    - mit einem Ukrainer verheiratet ist
    - Europäisches Recht studiert
    - deshalb u.a. in Deutschland studiert hat (spricht Deutsch)
    - deshalb u.a. in Italien studiert hat (spricht Italienisch)
    - deshalb u.a. in Brüssel studiert hat (spricht Französisch)
    - jetzt in Frankreich wohnt
    - der Mann fast nur in Frankreich gewohnt hat
    - beide zusätzlich noch eine Wohnung in Kiew haben

Also dann, viel Spaß und Bedauern beim Lesen ihres eigentlich sehr interessanten Berichtes (wenn die Situation nur nicht so traurig wäre).

Der Bericht von Khrystyna:

"I hasten to write all that has happened to us recently. I want to save each and every image in my memory from the trip we had last week. I am not of that kind who keeps the diary and likes to describe all the travels - there were too many of them in a few couple of years and most of them were special, however, without any spicy flavour. This one, meanwhile, needs to be told or better to say "written" - just because it was so multifarious in a good and bad way and so saturated, that when I finally got home - I thought it lasted at least for a month.

The beginning was more than trivial. My husband had to take part in a conference in a small city in Norway called Kongsberg - an hour by local train from Oslo. And as I had been dreaming about visiting Norway since September last year, it has been planned to travel there together: he - for the reason of business, me - for my own pleasure. Nice! Besides, we wanted to visit as well the Norwegian fjorden, once the conference was finished. So we bought the tickets from La Rochelle - a nice city an hour away (by car) from Nantes - to Oslo. And on Monday, 12th of April, we took off. After arrival to the city we split up for a while - Kostiantyn needed to go immediately to Kongsberg, as to me - I wanted to stay for a day in Oslo.
I am not going to tell a lot about this city - those who are quite familiar with the European cities won't find it too different or too special, though it has its own severe charm. While strolling along the streets of Oslo, I was more interested in people around. I have heard a lot that Norwegians are good-looking in their own, again severe manner. I expected to see some handsome heirs of Vikings. I did not though ... I am truly sorry if I insulted some connoisseur of a Nordic beauty. In the late evening I took a train and went to Kongsberg ...

The next day a friend of mine - a brilliant artist from Liverpool who has been living now in Norway for 15 years - came and picked me up for a ride across Telemark - the region where he dwells. And during two days of traveling he showed me Norway I could only see on some really well-done pictures or on his paintings before - the forest of the fine green pine-trees, the clear blue lakes still dreaming covered by ice, the rivers with the big waterfalls, the high grey rocks sleeping deeply under the snow - then small villages, old churches, neat wooden houses - the first country I have seen so far, where except Oslo and maybe two other "big cities" there are no blockhouses ... I was charmed, I was absorbed by the nature, I was happy, I was grateful ...

After two days the conference was finished. And we went with my husband by train to Stavanger. My husband who spent almost three days in the hotel without seeing anything but power point presentations with a lot of graphics and microphotographs of some powders and samples - God knows what - could hardly turn his eyes away from the window - so marvelous it was! But the "highlight" of our trip happened on the next day - when we went by foot from Jorpeland to Lysefjorden and fabulous Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock). The infinity, the strength of nature was so incredible that we couldn't find the words - we were just standing there, on the top, speechless, breathing the air, feeling how fantastic it smells.

All this was a nice part of our Norwegian adventure. The bad one began when we came back to Oslo, and on Sunday morning understood that there was no flight back home. There were no flights at all in Europe, nowhere (but on the south)! We spent like two hours on crowded train station - which I started to hate. I always disliked train and bus stations - for me it means either a long journey or a boring waiting for a long journey. I am fond of airports on the contrary - it's always quick or at least quicker. And so we were sitting and checking all possibilities to get out from Norway so much beloved just a day before. The "sit-and-wait-in-Oslo option" was rejected immediately - for the reason of absence of place to sleep. The "train option" had fallen off afterwards ( 400 euros/per person just to go back only to Paris!) followed by the "car-renting option" (for the same reason). Then the "buss option" was voted down - this time for the reason of tickets unavailability. At least for the certain period of time equal to that one of unavailability of flights. The "hitch-hiking option" remained the only one left. First, looking at the map we were rather thrilled by this idea. So many people have done it before! And successfully! We looked at the map of the city, planned our rout. And then slept that last night in Oslo peacefully.
The next day we left Oslo. We got to the beginning of the road leading to the Swedish city called Goeteborg, took out our big poster with the name of this city and waited. In one hour nothing has happened. The cars were passing by, with some drivers smiling and waiving, and the others not even bothering to look at us. I got chilled to the bones thinking of going back to the lovely warm train station in Oslo. Then suddenly a car with two Pakistanis had stopped. Unfortunately they could take us only a few km towards the nearest petrol station. But we were grateful even for that - it meant - out of the city finally! A Norwegian girl stopped on the road behind the petrol station - she took us only a few km further - but it was enough for me to understand that there was no way back to Oslo. At least by means of public transportation. And then again a long cold hour (approximately) of waiting had passed till a big truck with a Polish driver stopped. But he was going to Goeteberg! Almost 300 km! We got an amazing hospitality and a food in his truck - and I got some sleep as well while my husband was helping him to load some stuff on his way. Then he drove us even 100 km further than it was initially planned towards Malmo/Helsingbor. It was getting dark and it was still 300 km to Copenhagen. Then a big van full of polish students working in the spring and summer in Sweden, stopped and drove us around 50 km.
Meanwhile it became completely dark and we were still in the middle of fucking nowhere. The last car for that day was the one which took us to Helsingbor. There we planned to take a ferry to Helsingor (Denmark) and the train to Copenhagen, where a friend of mine had a brother and where we were hoping to spend a night, to get a hot shower and some rest. The people who stopped were from Palestine minority. They took us to their place and offered us some tea and even food. We had to wait a bit until the next ferry. Meantime I called to the friend and it appeared that we could not stay at the place of his brother. I was so disappointed and shocked (just imagine: almost 11 p.m., we were supposed to take a ferry and then a train to the city, which we did not know at all, knowing that we would not have there a roof and knowing that the all hostels and cheap hotels should be fully booked owing to the situation with the cancelled flights), that our hosts started to ask me what happened - they thought that somebody had died according to the expression of my face. Well, I explained. And after a few seconds they offered us to stay for a night in their separate studio flat without even asking our names! The guy took us to this studio, left us the key and gave us the password to his internet connection telling us that he comes to pick us up tomorrow morning to the ferry station. A miracle! The life is like that - sometimes you get aid from the people who do not even bother to ask for your name!

The next morning we got to the Copenhagen train station full of people walking to and fro, queuing to the ticket offices, information service and even all ticket machines. Awful - in the literal sense of this word! We tried to get out of the city on the highway to Rodby (the city with blessed ferry to Germany) as quick as we could. That day in Denmark on this highway was the worst in this entire trip - we spent 8 hours just to make 158 km. No, I can not say that people did not stopped - they did. But just for a few km. Then they had to turn from the highway. Besides it had been raining the whole day - we were completely wet, hungry and chilled. After the last guy - when the distance to Rodby was only 38 km - I could not stand it anymore, and we started going. And after ten km of march under the squally rain we got to a tunnel and we didn't know what to do ... And then the police car stopped. I do not know how they got informed that two certain - probably - crazy, probably homeless - human beings were marching along the highway towards Rodby. However, the policeman started to ask us all standard questions - where are we from, where are we going, why, do we know that it is forbidden to go along the highway in Denmark, and after the "questionnaire" was finished he said we had to pay a fine - 500 euros! And here the dam burst! We started to cry one after another that it was not our fault that the flights had been cancelled, that the trains were too expensive, that there were no busses to France till God knows when, and that we were tired and that if we had these 500 euros or at least twice as much - we would rather spend 24 hours in trains than two days on dusty, rainy and cold highways. (Do not get us wrong - we had a sum more than that but just a month ago we bought a car - which was not very expensive, but still quite costly (for us) and we wanted as well to change the apartment in France). He listened to us, looked again at our IDs, called to the centre and then ordered to get into the car. We thought "this is the end, my friend" ... But after a second he told us that he was going to drive us to the nearest city - about 10 km. - which was just 20 minutes by train from Rodby! Like a taxi    ;-)    Then there were a train and a ferry. And Germany! At last! On that very ferry we "stopped" a dark blue Mercedes with an elderly German businessman going to Freiburg. He was the first person whom I addressed to and he happened to be the right one! Serendipity? Luck?
And then sitting in his comfortable warm car, listening to his stories, I felt so good! I loved everything - the language, his car, German highways without speed limitations where he had driving easily 220 km/per hour. My husband was sleeping peacefully - he could not participate in our discussion at any rate. He does not speak German.
In something like 4 hours we were at the Frankfurt airport. He did not want to drop us off far away from the city, at the same time he had no time to drive to the city centre - it has been already 1 a.m.

We slept a few hours in the airport. There were so many people that we had to sit on the floor. Some people were waiting there from Thursday - especially those who had flights to the other continents. I got to know one girl from Venezuela - she had been waiting for a flight to Philadelphia 5 days. I thought that even hitch-hiking was better - at least you move and you feel that with each km you are getting closer to your home.

The next days with the help of a good friend we found "Mitfahrgelegenheit/covoiturage" to Paris - but it appeared that instead of going directly to Paris the guy had to drive first to Brussels. That meant extra 3-4 hours of a ride! With the stupid black music!
And then three hours in the train to La Rochelle and then almost two hours in the car (my husband was very tired and at some point turned towards Bordeaux instead of Nantes - we had to turn back). Slightly before the midnight we got home and I got a call from my mom wishing me a happy birthday and asking me whether I am ok... I thought I was."

Diesen Zusatz schrieb sie noch per Email:

"[...] es ist kaum eine Woche nach dieser Reise vergangen, als mich mein Mann gestern fragte, ob ich an Pfingsten für Ferien nach Korsika fliegen möchte !    :-)    Ich habe ihn angeschaut, als ob er völlig bekloppt ist ! Nein, dieses Mal bleibe ich lieber zu Hause oder fahre nur mit Auto irgendwohin ..."