Journal: Pages 43-44
the only hot food available at 22:00 -- a hot dog at the petrol station -- and walked to the bus depot, where I remembered writing my journal two years ago as I waited for my connection to Tromsø.
29 May 2003, Thursday: Narvik - Bodø
The rains of the Gulf Stream reasserted their familiar presence throughout the Norwegian coast once more.
The return to Bodø was not just another haul on the E6. The fjords, mountains and the long tunnels through them are delights to the eye, and something a little more.
For motorists keen to local history, they will find a tunnel at Kobelveid left by the German army and their Russian POW laborers during WWII, just beneath a roaring waterfall. Also nearby at Kjelvik is set of antique turf-roof farmhouses that has become an on-site museum; it's well worth the effort to make the short but steep climb to the hilltop site. To the Norwegians a century ago, the fjords were not scenic wonders to be enjoyed at leisure, but formidable challenges to living off the land and sea.
A warm meal on a plate at long last! The løvsteik was affectionately served at the hotel overlooking the Kobelv waterfall and tunnel, but I had to tell a little white lie to my cute hostess about how good it actually tasted.
The rain made the visit to the mælstrøm (like "fjord," it's a word of Scandinavian origin) of Saltstraumen all the more dramatic, as miserably wet as I was. The churning waters looked quite hazardous indeed, but that didn't stop the swimming sea birds and pleasure crafts from riding the current with great speed towards the open sea.
The historic 19th-century Grand Hotel at Bodø was, along with everything else, destroyed in 1940 during the war. Now rebuilt into a sleek, modern edifice with hints of its Victorian,