From my Archives: Hagavik

(I’ve lived in this amazing country for almost eight years. Buried in my blog’s Archives are many emotions and experiences from my first years as an expatriate. I’d like to let them see the light again! So, on occasional Fridays, I’ll share my favorites in a “Flashback Friday” type of reblog format.)

Life is _______________ (busy, content, or any other synonym you want to use to fill in the blank!), and blogging has had to take a continuing back seat as it did during my recent trip to the States. I do miss the enjoyment of visiting your own blogs, and really miss our conversations and connection!

A week ago I alluded to an upcoming surgery. I check into the hospital this Sunday night, and my surgeon and I have a date Monday morning. If all goes well, I’ll probably be home a couple days later. Drugged, so hopefully NOT leaving comments on your blogs. ;)

Because of that, and (referring to my lost-by-the-wayside schedule) since it’s Friday, today I thought it was appropriate to reblog this post about my first surgery at Kysthospitalet Hagavik in February 2010. The gorgeous views I photographed outside the hospital’s windows have been buried in the archives of “An American in Norway” for a long time; they need to be seen again! (Since we’ve had a little snow yesterday and today, maybe it will stick around, the sun will come out, and I’ll have similar views again? :) )

November 24, 2012

I have always had problems with my left hip – it’s something I was born with. Medical treatment of 1958 had me in a brace for nine months while a hip socket formed. My Dad remembers the doctors saying at the time that I’d have problems with it later in life, but what they were able to do then gave me a much better quality of physical life than was available just a generation earlier!

Now it’s the 21st Century, and children with the issues I was born with have corrective surgery in utero.

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the serenity of Kysthospitalet in Hagavik

Yesterday I was at Kysthospitalet Hagavik for medical appointments. This is a specialized hospital, one I’ve gotten to know fairly well in the last five years.

Yesterday’s fourth-day-in-a-row of sunshine (and, as it turns out, the last for now) was glorious. After my appointments were through I took a brief walk in the sun while waiting for Jan.

It was so peaceful to stand in the warming rays and experience the calmness of the area from the different perspective of being outside the hospital instead of in. The crisp air, sparkling ice-covered fjord, bright sunshine, and winter-bare surroundings were magic.


It was the very definition of serenity.

Statsraad Lehmkuhl: boats met on an August journey

Blah. That’s the only way to describe the weather these past few days. Dreary and rainy, it’s boring to be inside but miserable to be out during the short daylight hours.

To lift my spirits, I was looking through photos of more exhilarating times and found these, the last to be shared of our four-hour sailing adventure last August on the Statsraad Lehmkuhl. As we journeyed, other boats met and joined us. It reminded me a bit of the Pied Piper.

Remembering the way the wind, clouds, sun, rain, rainbow, waves, seas, and emotions mixed is uplifting now!

A few images and short video of that part of the adventure:


How about one from Christmas, when we glimpsed the Statsraad Lehmkuhl’s holiday spirit through the car window as we drove to Sandviken to spend time with our grandson?

December 26, 2014 - Statsraad Lehmkuhl and Christmas

There. That helps to lift the dreary-day spirits. Now, to continue that, I think I’ll go over to get a sneak peek of the songs submitted for Michelle’s dance party. Come and join the fun! Which one makes you move?

a visit from Storm Nina

So, Storm Nina happened on Saturday. It was wild. We lost power for most of the day. It came back on in the night, and I thought to publish this yesterday (Sunday) — but then we lost power again in the morning, and didn’t get it back until late at night. We’ve gone through a lot of candles!

Called “the strongest storm in 20 years,” Bergen’s airport was closed (*that* rarely happens), and this page from Bergens Tidende has several videos from the Bergen area.

We could feel the winds as they shifted; from inside, the windows were the big clue.


This is a minute-long compilation of our Saturday from 100 meters above the fjord, taken while there was still light enough to see. Yes, I went outside for a bit!

The wind continued long after dark. Without power, it was eerie and enticing at the same time.

Sunday morning the only damage we could see in our immediate area were the many tree branches on the ground, and the one just outside my office window that doesn’t want to leave its tree just yet. My work view has changed.

January 10, 2015 - Storm Nina damage


And then we looked up to a tree in our front yard. I’m glad I wasn’t out when that came flying from another tree.

January 11, 2015 - Storm Nina damage

During his drive into Osøyro to find something for us to eat yesterday, Jan saw many trees down. An apartment had been blown away. Although I feel somewhat exposed up here in our community, it was obviously so much worse elsewhere. (And all of Europe is experiencing strange and extreme weather — right, Jane?)

My outside windows are now very dirty. They’ll have to wait to be cleaned — two days later, we’ve got strong winds and rain out there again. If you don’t “see” me around this blogosphere of ours, it means our power is out and I’m sitting and reading by candlelight again!

January 12, 2015 - this morning's radar

January 12, 2015

a walk beside the Des Moines River

I’ve been to Iowa often to visit family, and as my past visits in Ottumwa have drawn to a close I’ve always been a little frustrated that, once again, I didn’t get out to take photos of the Des Moines River from the Ottumwa Trail or walk around downtown a bit to take in the history and architecture of this area.

This trip I did both for a couple hours, and this post shares a few photos of the river walk. Summertime would have provided better scenery for the river area, as it was December 12th, winter-bare, and not very colorful. But I enjoyed watching the force of the rain-and-melted-snow swollen river as it passed under the numerous bridges …


… the winter antics of the seagulls and Canadian geese as they rested on the ice, flew through the air, and argued among themselves …


… the pigeons roosting on the roof of Bridge View Center, until one was disturbed and they all took off to fly a short loop over the river and return to roost again (a cycle that happened five or six times while I stood there) …


… and, most excitedly, I was rewarded with a bald eagle sighting, something I’ve REALLY wanted to see! My digital photos from my hand-held camera of its majestic flight hunting along the river aren’t very clear, but my minds-eye photos are ones I’ll keep with me for a long time!


Here’s that first photo, cropped; I know it’s not clear, but it was so exciting to see and gives you an idea of the majestic eagle’s flight.

December 12, 2104 - walk beside the Des Moines River


Even in winter with the cold wind blowing, I found a warm place of contentment watching the activities of the birds and seeing how they interacted with the environment on this river that cuts through the center of my country.

After my bird-and-river gazing, I drove across the bridge and captured a few photos of downtown decorated for Christmas — with a winter Iowa sunset backdrop. I’ll share those next time!