Capital of Vikings?

Well not exactly. Since the origins of these warrior sailors cannot to attributed to a specific modern day country or region. But today, Norway can be counted to be a Viking country in some way. Because it is now wealthy (from mineral oil) with the world’s largest sovereign fund and venturing out like the warriors of yore. Except in suits and not horned helmets…

Heheh.

You might also know that of all the Nobel prizes given out, only the peace prize is awarded by Norway. But did you know that Alfred Nobel was once called the merchant of death? You see, he made his initial fortune from the development of dynamite. While it could have been used peacefully, it got higher prices as part of ammunitions and weapons.

It was thus speculated that as remission he donated away most of his fortunes and set up the prizes. And in particular the peace prize was in recognition to those who made the most contribution towards reducing conflicts. What do you think?

We had a beautiful day in Oslo. The photos look grainy now, but you have to believe us that it was glistening in the city except for one afternoon. Look up our essay here on what we did in Oslo. Have you been to the city? Tell what you like about it!

The amazing fjords

It was definitely amazing. While we did not take photos precariously hanging for dear life off the edge of a cliff, the views from the water was equally spectacular. Now you need to understand that almost the entire coastline of Norway is made up of these “mountains”. Yep. They rise from the very deep and what you see are like icebergs, just the tip only.

In fact they rise so high that some parts are still covered with snow when we arrived in high summer (it was June). So you’d understand that we remain in “winter” clothing simply because the tropical in us could not adjust so quickly.

Our journey only took us to one – the Sognefjord. And it is quite a place to get to and links with a railway that ascends from water’s edge to the skies… ok just up the mountain. But it was a steep incline at some places and the train felt like it was heaving and puffing to pull its own weight plus the lot of us tourists.

And what else can you expect to find here?

Trolls. Heheh. Fortunately not for real, but in the form of figurines. In the town of Laerdal they appear to be attempting to capitalize on this myth. Perhaps one could be lurking in the mountains and fjords around you… watch out!

Join us here for this reminisce of the fjords. Did you take a dare devil photo at the edge?

Is Ikea its most famous brand?

The title of this post should give you enough hint about which country we are referring to. At one time barely 250 years ago, this country was one of the strongest militarily in the Nordic region. So much that it dominated to the extent that the Baltic sea could have been named after it.

Yeah, we’re talking about Sweden. Land of Abba, meat balls and Ikea… ok so we jest, in case Swedes object.

Our reminisce of the time we spent in that country is concentrated almost entirely in Stockholm. For that was the main stopping point in our coach trip around Scandinavia so many years ago. You know the trouble with groups is that one does not have control over the itinerary and timings. So we’ll probably make a return some day.

What made the most impression on us on that journey? We think its got to be the warship Vasa. Get to the museum where the extricated ship is now on display. As impressive as it was, it was ‘top heavy’. Too many guns almost like an inverted pyramid. A good lesson for all to learn, particular corporates with high paid management… heheh.

It was such a brief whirlwind journey through it that we did so long ago (here). We know there are lots more to see and do in Sweden. What do you recommend?

Grow like a champion grow!

We are absolutely sure that none of you dear readers will understand the context under which we are writing about Denmark. What’s the title of the post has to do with this country you gently ask.

Heheh…

You see, when we were growing up there was this brand of milk powder that was frequently advertised on television. And its tagline was the title of this post. Guess what? The producer and owner of the brand is Danish. So now you know why when we think of this brand when Denmark is mentioned… imprinting. Get them while they are young. That’s why there are legislations these days to prohibit advertising targeted at kids.

Before and during our time living in Amsterdam, we transit via Copenhagen airport quite often. Hence no prizes for guessing we took time out of the airport to visit the city.

As you can imagine, while most folks would make a beeline for the mermaid, we casually strolled along the stroget to our favourite fish restaurant. Nothing beats the wonderful feeling of a romantic walk along this pedestrian shopping street on a warmer day.

But there is more than the capital, for we also made it out of the city whose street (according to Hans Christian Andersen’s story) is paved with gold. Remember this story Find out what’s more you can expect here.

Where in Denmark have you touched?