Archive for October, 2011

Oct 31 2011

Posted by under Trips

Tromsø Museum

After visiting Universitetet i Tromsø     we  took the local bus to our final destination, The Tromsø Museum. According the Wikipedia, it’s the oldest scientific institution in North- Norway!

 

While on the bus en route to our destinagtion, we enjoyed beautiful views like this one:

 

and this:

 

The place looked so peaceful (for a working Monday afternoon!):

 

We finally arrived at our destination:

 
One shot for the album:

Tromsø Museum is being operated by the Universitetet i Tromsø .  There are many interesting displays, one of the most interesting sections must be the one that explains how aurora is created:
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There was also the section that describes the different types of  rocks found in Norway (no pic :( ).

The other interesting section (not found in other countries) was the one about the indigeneous people of northern Norway, the Sami people:

 

And their traditional livelihood:-

Their head gears (remember, winter is this far north part of Norway can be very cruel):

 

Their mode of transport (very environmentally friendly! :) ) :

 

There’s one section on Christianity. It’s so secluded and I felt rather eeri when I entered the place. I didn’t stay long, but I managed to see a “fat Christ”:

 

 

On our way out I saw the map pf the Scadinavian peninsular the the area where the Sami or Sapmi people occupy:

 

Like othe museums, this museum also has a section on mankind. I played with the computer generated image, and got myself decorated with middle-age jewellery. Prior to that, I had to answer a few questions, then got my pic snapped, and sent to my email address(reminded me of the Experience Green Growth Hall in Seoul ):

 

There was also a section on faunas of Norway, and here’s one nice display of the birds:

 

We knew we had to catch a certain bus to get home, so we had to leave earlier than we should. Here’s a pic of me in front of the museum while putting on my winter jacket:

 

Good bye,Tromsø Museum!

 

That’s all for now..

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Oct 28 2011

Posted by under Trips

Universitetet i Tromsø

Date: 17th October 2011

“Universitetet i Tromsø” or University of Tromsø, is the northernmost university on earth, as stated by Wikipedia here.

 

That day we decided to give the campus a visit. I was early, so I came down to the hotel lobby, do some “Facebooking” first (though I could have done it in my room!) :)

 

We finally left our hotel, walked towards downtown again. Oh, we came across The Old Man again:

 

DH wanted to go to the Tourist Information Office. You see, the idea of coming all the way north here is actually to witness the Aurora, or also known as The Northern Lights.

The last 3 nights had been either rainy or heavily cloudy, so we had no chance of seeing the light. That day we were hoping the night to come would be much better, so DH went to enquire at the Information Counter.

 

We were happy to know that there were night outings. Just the day before all outings were cancelled  due to bad weather.

After making payments for the night outing, we continued to walk to the bus stop. DH took this shot along the way:

 

And I have no idea what building that is:

 

Soon we were on the bus on the way to the world’s northern-most university. We passed through some nice housing areas:

 

And came across a campus of the university:

 

It was interesting to see how low the angle of the satellite dishes in Tromso have to be:

 

We finally arrived at the main campus of the Universitetet i Tromsø. We alighted from the bus at the stop where most students did. As we walked towards the campus building, I came across a familiar face:

The Gandhi bust was in front of the Peace Studies Centre of the university. I bet this is the northern-most Ganshi bust in the world too, LOL!

Walking further we came across a campus map:

 

We then walked towards the main administrative building. This must be something like the main square:

 

With the square in front of me (or rather, the other building facing the square):

 

We kept on walking until we came across something that we figured out to be equivalent to the Student Centre:

 

We went to its cafeteria, and DH ordered salmon sandwich for him, while I only took the coffee-flavoured milk. I was not hungry yet.

 

We could detect a free wi-fi service which  we had to register to access it. I didn’t bother. DH tried, but the response was that the admin would  send the confirmation to his handphone. We waited for quite a while it never came.

 

It is a very nice campus, with the student centre linked to a few other buildings such as the library, via the basement! It would be very comfy  and convenient to the students especially during the winter months.

We then decided to continue our walk:

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We then went back to the bus stop to catch the bus back to town.

Next: Tromso Museum

 

 

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Oct 26 2011

Posted by under Trips

Fjellheisen, Tromsø

Date: 16th October 2011 (Sunday)

 

As mentioned in the earlier blog (about Polar Museum), we decided to walk across the 1km-long bridge.

 

But we were not the only people walking across it:

 

It looked like it is a common family affair  for a Sunday:

 

It was cold and windy, so I walked briskly (as seen in the above pic), while DH took a close-up shot of the housing area at the back:

 

This is the view on our right when we were at the highest point:

 

Zooming into the front view:

 

I turned around and signalled DH to catch up with me:

 

You see, we wanted to get to the foothill as shown  in this pic:

 

We eventually passed the bridge, and came to the Arctic Church:

 

Looking back at the bridge from behind the church:

 

We had to walk for another 10-15 mins, before we finally reached the foothill of the local cable car, The Fjellheisen:

 

Nice timber building:

 

 

Me :) :

 

It’s a rather old cable car house (opened in 1961), which operates with only 2 cable cars, going up and down every 3o mins.

 

Cute models:

 

We had some 15 mins to kill before the next trip up:

 

Finally we were in the car. Here’s the car operator. He looked bored :( :

 

The view down (see the bridge that we crossed earlier and the distance that we walked?) :

 

There’s a wooden-floored observatory deck outside:

 

A shot from the deck:

 

We went out of the building, and what better way to celebrate our achievement (of walking that far) than to do a jump:

 

or another:

 

The hill is really barren, but a nice place for hiking:

 

I went quite far. We didn’t like the look of the weather, and decided to get back to the cable car building:

 

DH asked me to do another jump, which I obliged:

 

and another one with the mountains as the background:

 

 

We eventually came down, and waited for the bus at the nearby stop:

 

Here’s the bus schedule, as posted on the wall:

 

That was the end of that day’s adventure…

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Oct 26 2011

Posted by under Trips

The Polar Museum, Tromsø

Date: 16th October 2011 (Sunday)

 

After the walkabout in downtown Tromsø, we came to this place:

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It’s the administrative office of the Polar Museum, across it.

 

Here’s me with the bust of the guy who first went to BOTH North and South Poles, Amundsen:

 

 

The museum only opens from 11am – 4pm. We were a bit early, so we looked around. Saw this ship:

 

DH said it’s a Russian baby, and he was right:

 

We also spent some time looking at the water or whatever were there:

 

In a distance, if you zoom your lense, you’ll see some of the buildings on the town side:

 

It was almost 11am, so we started to walk back to the museum building:

 

We went into the museum, and paid entrance fees (NOK50 per pax).

There were many nice displays, and we were given a folder of the translation of the texts of the exhibits:

 

One corner was dedicated to seal-hunting activities of yester-years:

 

I touched the stuffed baby seal but there’s no picture. Here’s DH’s of a close-up of it:

 

There were many interesting displays, and here are some that caught my attention:

Here’s a seal skin (can you imagine how many you need to get a winter coat?):

 

First-aid kit:

 

Some of the navigation gadgets:

 

Salt was the main (cheap too) preservative. The salt barrel:

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At one point I signed the visitors’ book, and so did DH:

 

DH is an ardent fan of Amundsen’s and he couldn’t resist having a pic of him at the corner dedicated to that great guy:

 

After going roung the 2-storey museum, I got tired, while DH was still not done:

 

We eventually got out of the museum, and took the final look at the administrative building that we went to earlier:

 

Still not too exhausted, we agreed to walk across the 1km long bridge to get to the other side:

 

Next: Fjellheisen

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Oct 25 2011

Posted by under Trips

Tromsø Again

Date: 16th October 2011 (Sunday)

 

The weather was slightly better than the day before.

 

We decided to go for a walk into downtown again. It was a Sunday morning, and very quiet:

 

Another look at the huge local library:

 

and the city cathedral:

 

A bank, of course:

 

 

Very quiet street:

 

One of the main streets:

 

Beautiful automn leaves:

 

Same trees but on a different angle:

 

Next: The Polar Museum

 

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Oct 22 2011

Posted by under General Issues

An Open Letter to My Neighbour-to-be

Salam and a very good Saturday morning to you,

I sincerely hope your Saturday morning is good, because mine is no longer as good as it used to be.

For the past 6 weeks or so, my Saturdays are like like Monday-Friday, where it has been constant knocking and banging from your side of the block.  Sometimes I wonder how much longer this is going to last?

 

I know you want a dream home, and you can afford to do so financially, that’s why you get the contractor workers to knock so many walls of your house. Never mind the fact that the house has already got 4 bedrooms with attached bathrooms and another room downstairs (not including the store room nor the little storeroom under the staircase). I also am ignoring the fact that I heard you only have ONE child. I always thought that this house of a built-up area of 3600sq feet is more than enough, but I could be wrong! :(

 

I know it’s easy for you to want any kind of renovation done because you are not living in it yet. And yes, my husband has signed the consent letter (required by MBSA) for you to knock the back part of the house and extend your build-up space. We do believe that that is your right because it is your land. Never mind that our air flow can be partially blocked, because the location of our houses is high up and we have plenty of wind blowing into them.

 

However I would like  you to know that a few of us here are prone to migraine, and the contant knocking and drilling can really drive us mad. I am trying my best to tolerate it on weekdays, because it is conveniently assumed that we would be at work, though I do not work full time, and sometimes  we (my husband too) work from home.

 

I want you to know that on a serene Saturday morning like today, my nerves are not as well-behaved as on weekdays. Why? Because my brain is wondering how peaceful you are at your home, and not knowing what kind of torture we have to endure here in OUR home, just because you want to have such extensive renovation on your side!

 

Sometimes I feel like suggesting to MBSA to only allow huge renovation like this (or any renovation at all) ONLY IF the owner lives in the premise! Then maybe the owner can understand the torture that we, the next door neighbours who share part of the walls have to endure!

 

I think we are saved by the fact that the developer of this area does not allow any renovation work on Sundays, otherwise 7-days a week I have to put up with this!

 

Nevermind about the dust that collects on my car, and gets into the house. Nevermind that I have to mop the floor almost everyday – because it is my fault that i want my floor to be free of dust, most of which comes from the knocking downs that are happening on your side.

 

This has been a long letter, and I hope you can read this with empathy, because as I am writing this letter I am also shivering with anger, trying to control myself from shouting to your workers to stop those knockings!!!!

In short, I hope you remember the phone call I made to you 2 weeks ago, asking for Saturday works not to be noisy, because Saturdays are when everybody is home here, and we would appreciate a quieter time, just like before the renovation work started.

Despite all these, I do welcome you to the neighbourhood. I hope you will move in ASAP, because that will also mean the end of those knockings and drillings!!

 

Sincerely yours,

-sabariah

(a very disturbed neighbour-to-be)

Honestly, sometimes I feel like going next door and shoot those workers(as if I have a gun. Or should I consider ilegally get one? Hahahahahaha!! Can I plead insanity for that?

 

Updates:

 

 

 

 

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Oct 19 2011

Posted by under Uncategorized

Hello Tromsø

When we arrived at our hotel, it was almost 12 midnight, or you can say it’s 12am Saturday 15th 2011.

 

The room that we were going to spend 4 nights in was rather nice, despite being a bit cramp (with ensuite bathroom too):

Tromsø is one of the northernmost towns in Norway. It has the northern-most university, northernmost aquarium and northern-most cathedral, to name a few. Well, it’s about 350km north of the Arctic Circle and a mere 2000km from the North Pole. The Land of the Midnight Sun (in summer).

We started the morning with a quiet breakfast:

 

Being a Saturday morning, the others must had been sound asleep :)

 

Luckily I enjoyed cereals and nuts:

 

After the breakkie, we got out of the hotel (aptly named Viking Hotel), to see how it was:

 

Pretty wet so we went back to our room to rest (since the night before we went to bed late).

 

After a while, we decided to go for a walk down town. Still very wet but there are people trying to enjoy their Saturday:

 

That glassy building is the local library:

 

Nice-coloured shop houses:

 

The cathedral I mentioned earlier:

 

We then walked towards the water front:

 

A 1km bridge that connects Tromso island with another island towards the mainland:

 

Business is as usual for a Saturday afternoon:

 

It was cold, wet and windy so we cut short our walk and came back to the hotel. We saw some smarter guys (who decided to stay indoor) watching an EPL match on TV:

 

I took a cup of coffee (free flow of tea and coffee at this hotel, cool) and went back to our room. That was all for that day..

 

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Oct 19 2011

Posted by under Trips

Goodbye Bergen

Date: 14th October 2011

 

After the walk around the Bryggen and the ride up the Floibanen, we walked back to our hotel.

DH still wanted to snap a few more pix of Bryggen from a distance, hence we got this one:

 

and this:

 

and this:

 

We even watched a ship leaving the harbour, and another one taking over its place:

 

 

We took a different way back to the hotel. Not that we were lost, but more because we wanted to see the place:

 

Nothing spactacular – people going about their day-to-day activity:

 

The streets were pretty quiet, for a Friday afternoon:

 

 

 

Everything is expensive. Here’s a list of how much it cost to get services from the hairdresser:

 

We passed the town theatre hall, but only the side view (the front part was under restoration):-

 

and the nearby square:

 

We found a halal kebab outlet:

 

And we got a rolled chicken kebab. Too big to eat alone so we shared:

 

Done with kebab, we went back to our hotel to collect our bags. I managed to access the internet (FB) briefly :) :

 

Walking briskly to the Airport bus station, which is just round the corner of Hotel Radisson Blu.

We had a pleasant surprise when we found out the bus actually offers free wi-fi!!

We also had free internet access at Bergen Airport.

 

To get to Tromso, we had to take a flight back to Oslo, then get a connection flight to Tromso. By the time we arrived at Tromso Airport, it was 11.30pm local time.

 

Next: Staying in Tromso

 

 

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Oct 18 2011

Posted by under Trips

Bergen – The Floibanen

Date: 14th October 2011

 

After the walkabouts around the Bryggen, we walked on towards the cable car, Floibanen. On our way there we came across an antique shop and saw these classic typewriters:

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A pose at the entrance of the Floibanen:

 

We also met a couple of guys from the Reliance group tour, who had arrived this morning from Voss:

 

The rather short man on the right is actually Dato Ng Boon Bee, once a Malaysian Thomas Cup champion!

 

Tickets cost us 70 kroners each for a return trip. Waiting to board:

 

Me waiting patiently for the car to move:

 

No pic from the cable car because DH took a video :( . Anyway it was fun to see how excited the kids in the car were!

 

Now, the view of Bergen from above:

 

It was so chilly I had to go get a cuppa :) :

 

The railway station (not in the pic above) is at the far left of the lake, and our hotel is somewhere on the far right (top, don’t think it is in the pic) of it, and just the night before we were walking and pulling our luggage between the two places :) :

 

Enjoying the view:

 

I went to the nearby restaurant, searching for free wi-fi, but there was none :( . See how windy it was (look at the flags):

 

People watching was great too :) :

There’s a playground nearby:

 

But too cold for me to linger longer, so we walked back to the cable station:

 

Oh, suddenly I thought of doing a jump :) :

 

and another:

 

Exhausted and warmed, we took the car back to where we started:

 

Who did I bump into again? Mrs Kang (Alor Setar) who was with the Reliance group!

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And the rest of the gang too:

 

They were assembling before going off for a Mexican lunch (so I was told by Richard, their guide).

 

We said goodbye, and walked down. As we turned back, we saw their bus waiting still waiting for the others:

 

Next: The Walk back to the hotel..

 

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Oct 17 2011

Posted by under Trips

Bergen – Bryggen

After the brief stop at the Fish Market, we proceeded to the nearby (more famous) tourist attraction, Bryggen.

Bryggen is Norwegian for “Wharf”. It was designated as a World Cultural Site by UNESCO in 1979.

 

Part of Bryggen:

 

Zooming out a bit:

 

It was windy (hence chilly), so I sought shelter from the wind behind the signage :) :

 

We prefered to stroll the alleys between each block, like this one:

 

ans this one:

 

I was somehow reminded of  The Shambles, York!

 

Original building materials:

 

Strong durable woods certainly last!

 

At one of the backyards:

 

Outside the office:

 

where next ot it I found a gigantic wood-carving of the famous dried cod:

 

another alley:

 

Restoration works are actively in progress:

 

The Bryggen people have shown that wooden structures can be long-lasting and attractive too:

 

Another view at the back:

 

A final look at the facade, before we move:

Next: Floibanen

 

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