This weekend I have been visiting friends close to Arendal in the southern part of Norway. I have been to this region once before, but then I spend a rainy weekend in Kristiansand (not to mix up with Kristiansund – that is some 500 km north – so don’t program your GPS the wrong way!).
I left directly after work on Friday, taking my bike to the airport which is only 5 km away from my place of work. Very nice weather to do it this way. Just one problem – the airport doesn’t think about people coming there by bike. After I asked for a secure place to lock my bike without getting an answer, I had to improvise and put it to a flag pole at the parking lot for cars. Not the best way but it should be safe there and not easy to steal. To many people there.
I booked two different flights. Down to Kristiansand (the closest airport to my final destination) I chose SAS and on my way back Norwegian. Just a question of convenient times and OK prices. Ordinary flights this time. No Eco+ or anything fancy. Two short flights of 45 minutes each.
My friends are waiting for me at the airport. First stop is a local shopping center and a restaurant. We will be at the house late and it is nice to get something between our teeth for dinner. The house of my friends is about 60 minutes away. Never been there before. Beautiful place. Looking very much forward to spending time here. A warm evening with talking and music. We haven’t seen each other for some time, so it is nice to talk in person.
Saturday starts with breakfast and a walk in the local area. Total different landscape from where I live. Much more forests and no mountains (I think this is a very good combination :D). Even found some geocaches in the woods.
We got invited to a boat trip around Arendal. I have been on a small boat before, but never on a cabin cruiser. The area around Arendal is very nice. A lot of beautiful houses with direct access to the water – I just don’t want to think about what you have to pay to buy such a house. The sun is burning down on us. First idea was to go swimming, but the possibility to take a longer boat trip is much more desirable. I don’t get the chance to go on such a trip very often. I love the coast and the water (sorry mountain lovers^^) and soon we are speeding out on the ocean towards Grimstad, which is 22 km by car from where we started – no idea about the nautical miles we have to go.
Entering the harbor of Grimstad through a small archipelago. Lots of boats out here, people sitting on their boat or found a place on one of the small islands to enjoy the sun on this Saturday. I want a boat – hadn’t it been for the costs.
We disembark in the city center and buy lunch at a small burger place, followed by some tasty ice cream. After that it is time to get back to Arendal. But not before I got a trip around the Store Torungen lighthouse.
And before going back to the berth we take a swing inn to the city center of Arendal. A totally different view from the water. We check out the city after the boat trip. Found two more geocaches. We take an easy evening.
Sunday is a shorter day for me as I have to go back to Molde and catch a flight. A quiet morning with some breakfast and a little trip around the area where my friends live. Doing some geocaching and shopping for the Chilli con carne we want to eat. To tell the truth… be careful when you put in cayenne pepper. This was some spicy chilli, but it tasted good. Unfortunately the weekend is over and I have to leave. My private taxi is driving me back to Kristiansand airport. I am there in good time before my flight and find one more geocache before boarding my Norwegian flight to Oslo.
In Oslo I should have several hours of layover. But nothing is more boring than to sit an an airport without access to the lounge. So what options do I have? Norwegian doesn’t offer more flights that day. My only options are to wait until 22:30 or try to get on an SAS flight. First I leave the departure area to check out my possibilities. The flight with SAS is expensive with this short notice. But I might use some of my bonus points and just pay the taxes and fees. But it is to close to the departure time, so no booking in the app. The staff at the counter couldn’t book a bonus flight this close to departure so my last chance was to call the hotline – and they were able to help me. 6000 Eurobonus point and fees/taxes, but about 3 hours earlier than with Norwegian. I make it to the gate when boarding started. Perfect. I will be a now show for the other flight. A short flight and a bike ride later (and yes – it was still standing there) and I am home early enough to enjoy the rest of the evening.
Thanks to Marius and Nina for a beautiful weekend! Hope to be back in the not to distant future.