Saturday, March 1, 2008
Oslo Winter Walk
Late Friday afternoon we headed down to the city centre to meet for a winter walk. We read a flyer about these walks, which are guided walking tours around various areas of Oslo. We were intrigued so we thought we'd check it out and we weren't disappointed. Our tour guide, Hilde met us at the Z Club where we payed and received tickets for warm drinks after the walk. The only other person to join us was a young Australian who is spending a year working in Dublin. She came to Norway to see the Northern Lights. She went on the same trip that we are going to take in a few weeks to Tromso. How crazy is that?!
I really enjoyed the walk. Hilde shared a lot of history about the city and the buildings in the city centre. We made our way to The National Gallery to see some early masterpieces of Edvard Munch. He is the artist who painted The Scream. In fact there are 4 paintings of The Scream. In 1994 The Scream at the National Gallery was stolen the day the Olympics started in Lillehammer. The gallery was great. I always enjoy a good art museum and plan on returning. Plus it is free of charge. As we looked at Munch's paintings Hilde explained about them and told us all about Munch's life.
On the way out we stopped to look at some paintings by other Norwegian artists. Those Norwegians really know how to paint. We also took a quick peak in the gift shop.
We headed out into the cold night. Winter weather has returned and it was chilly. We wondered around the palace and viewed several statues. Hilde commented that Oslo likes their statues. She spoke about royalty and how Norway became independent after what seemed like forever!
Next we strolled to Henrik Ibsen's apartment. Ibsen was a famous playwright. His apartment which he lived in from 1895-1906 is located within walking distance to the National Theather. The museum curators have re-created his apartment as authentically as possible. Here he wrote 2 of his most famous plays.
On to the National Theatret, where many of Ibsen's plays were first performed and are still presented. The National Theatret inaugurated in 1899, is one of most in Europe.
Kent just commented that he wants to go see a play. We better start intensive Norwegian tomorrow. On our way to our final destination, the Grand Cafe Hilde pointed out some Ibsen quotes on the sidewalk that were.... inlaid metal. She translated them for us. I thought this was very clever.
Finally to our hot cocoa stop. The grand Cafe we were told was where Ibsen went everday at noon to drink his German beer and have a shot of schnops. This is the a very famous cafe in Scandanavia, where artists used to hangout. Lots of action took place here I thought as I warmed up and sipped my cocoa. We chatted for a while with the group. It was a beautiful cafe and a great evening! Even KJ had fun.....