Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Norway Post 26

I went for a walk hoping to find a shower. I found myself walking besides a man who asked me if I was a tourist. I told him my story and he showed me where the public showers were. The village had hot showers for the workers who were rebuilding it after last year's fire burnt everything down, and I was warm and clean.

I slept on the dock next to my kayak. In the middle of the night, despite the clear blue sky, my sleeping bag was damp. I convinced myself it was raining and nodded off. I woke back up, decided to get my bivi sack out, and fell back asleep. I woke up again, got the sack out, and slept 'till dawn.

When morning came, with my clear consciousness I realized that the fuss I had lost sleep over was dew.  Down by the water, there's a lot of it.

Day 23

A north wind was forecast to get stronger throughout the day. Fortunately, almost my entire route took me through tight well sheltered passages. One small rushing tidal stream connected two fjords. The ten foot wide race wound a 40 foot passage and turned under a tiny bridge before joining the next fjord. I climbed upstream with an intense and sustained sprint. "I am a beast," I screamed through my adrenaline hazed attack on the natural beauty turned wilderness enemy around me.

At the other end of the fjord the passage was almost as narrow but the water pulled me a along like a fire hose and I wooted with joy.

After a couple more less intense narrow passages the last four miles were into the headwind. An eagle rode the thermal vents above the edge of an island's cliffs. Between that and the island just north of it a mink scooted by me in the water and climbed up the rocks. It scampered behind a stone and then stuck its head out to look at me. I looked back, and then took a bunch of pictures.

I continued my push into the headwind across the bay and was thrilled to finally make landfall. I passed a small island where some folks talked above a dock. I was tired and had been on the water for over 8 hours. I asked if that blur in the distance that looked like a sea wall was the marina I remembered from Google maps.

"No, why do you need a marina?"

"Sometimes they have showers and friendly folks." I said.

"You can shower in our house." She told me. I was also invited for dinner and to sleep over. The next day when the weather was bad they invited me to stay until I was ready to leave. I love Norway.

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