Sunday, April 27, 2008

Gerd's Hytta

Passing Snillfjord (my favorite fjord name, it means "Nice Fjord"), we hooked around Austefjord and took a detour to visit my friend Gerd. She and her husband have a hytta which has been their summer project for almost 30 years. Reaching the hytta requires a short hike from the road, and it's hard to believe that they were able to build the house and grounds carrying supplies by hand.

Gerd's husband is a civil engineer and he has poured his craft mastery into this building. Consturcted largely from salvaged parts, found driftwood, and harvested logs, they have built a beautiful summer palace for their family, full of creative and clever bits of engineering. The view from their boat-like living room is absolutely breathtaking.

We stay for coffee, brownies, and ice cream, then we're invited for a boat ride out in the fjord. Out on the glassy water surrounded by high supple canyon walls, it's hard to imagine a more beautiful place. Reluctantly, we leave this slice of Asgard and head back home, wholly satisfied with our very full weekend. Thank you Allan!

Maggie and Maia became good friends this weekend. Maggie has been telling Maia all about life in America. Maia and her family will be spending next year in Bellingham with us.

Max and Peter found a comic book on the boat. This is far more interesting than looking at some boring old fjord.

The road around the fjord was not built until 1982. Until them, all of the small farms along the fjord were accessible only by boat. Farmers would raise sheep and goats, sending them up into the mountain to graze during the day. Fields of grass, cultivated with manure collected over the winter, would be harvested during the summer and fermented to use as feed during the winter. What a life!

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