Friday, September 12, 2008

Rome Highlights

The next three days were spent doing Rome which included eating, shopping for clothes, (unfortunately) and seeing the sights. We are big fans of the breakfast buffets in most European hotels. I was greeted in the morning by a barista asking cappucino? This was music to my ears.
We made it to the Trevi Fountain which was amazing, the Pantheon, the Time Elevator where we saw a 5D movie on the history of Rome, (very cool) the Coluseum and the Forum. We also walked to the Boghese Park and several fountains. Kent walked to the Vatican too.
We found clothes, etc at a mountain shop for Kent and me. I got some hiking capris and sandals. Kent found some shorts and a belt. At a department store KJ found summer things including pj's, a jumbo pack of undies, a skirt and a couple t-shirts. We did pick up a few other things at the Adidas Store close to our hotel. We decided to buy things that we'd wear again rather than just some cheapo stuff. Naturally our bags were delivered to the hotel on our third night. One of the hotel employees told us we had to be patient and that things are slow in Italy. I guess he was right. It was great having our things but boy, did I over pack! That is worthy of a blog entry of its own.
We really loved Rome but it is a place I'd like to visit again as we didn't get to everything.... but who does? July is hot and the city is packed with tourists. Seeing Rome with a nine year old warrants frequent gelato stops (not that I'm complaining)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Off To Roma...

Today is the start of our 3 week Italian adventure. Before I begin I must admit how fortunate Kent, KJ and I are to have this opportunity.
Off we went off to the National Theatre stop to catch the Flytoget (fast train) to the Guardemoen Airport. The flight was uneventful however our bags didn't make it. We weren't the only ones. By the looks of it, I'd say about 20 passengers were bagless. Big bummer as I assessed our wardrobes. We were going to be hot in Rome. Kent spent forever in line waiting to speak with the Air Italia agent. He finally left without a clue as to the whereabouts of our luggage. Fortunately, our driver was still waiting to take us to Hotel Forte. This was a worthwhile splurge after the luggage ordeal.
The hotel is located super close to the Spanish Steps which was appealing to me. I've been there before and loved hanging out and people watching. Emanuel, the consierge was welcoming and gave us a choice between two double rooms. We picked the one with two levels. KJ was all about having her own space. He also told us not to worry about our missing bags. Easy for him to say I thought.
We headed out to explore, perhaps buy some cooler clothes and eat. I'm trying not to freak out about the bags but it is super hot and I'm not used to the heat. Kent found an Adidas "climacool" shirt. It becomes part of his uniform for the next three weeks. We find a small cafe with some of the best pizza that has ever crossed our lips and the Italian beer is so refreshing. I forget how grumpy and hot I am. Geez, after all I am in ROME! We look around a bit more after dinner. We buy toothpaste, toothbrushes, a comb and brush.
Much later we head out for gelato and enjoy it walking around the Spanish Steps. What a beautiful evening! We decide to treat ourselves to gelato everyday while we are in Italy. What a goal?!?

American Independence in Norway?

Sunday June 29 was a celebration in Frogner Park. Each year a picnic is held in honor of America's Independence and we were able to partake. What a party! There was variety of food for the hungry: tacos, barbeque, fried chicken, chocolate chip cookies and brownies, and of course the usual Norwegian fare... hot dogs and waffles.

The kids enjoyed races and games and a watermelon eating contest.

The American Women's group had a book sale where we bought paper backs for 5 kroner. What a deal!

It was a lot of fun. A great way to spend our last day in Oslo!