Thursday, November 13, 2014

Kortmans Lysfabrikken

I had a teacher course in Namsos, aka "Rock City". On the way back driving through Levanger we stopped for dinner at a place that in the dark looked like a restaurant. It turned out to be a candle factory I had driven by several times before and always wondered about. We could see a diner through the windows, so we went in to check it out.

What a nice surprise! They were decked out for Christmas. The shop had several rooms of candles and a candle factory area where you could see candle-making in progress.

The diner is a 50s-themed diner, with Elvis playing on the juke-box and American 50s memorabilia everywhere. Upstairs is a kind of "museum", the owner's collection of interesting antiques. I understand the owner also collects firetrucks and has 4 historical trucks, which are outside in the summer but in storage during the winder. They are establishing a fire-fighting museum as well. It's nice to know we're all weird in our own ways!

Ready for jul

The candle factory

50s diner

50s diner

Lysfabrikken from E6

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


I was in Ålesund for two days, and excited to visit a new town, especially this one! Ålesund in on the west coast of Norway, here:

It's in a cluster of islands, many connected by tunnels. Ålesund has a population 49,000, making it the 10th most populous city in Norway. In 1904, one of the worst fires in Norwegian history destroyed nearly the entire city. Everyone had to evacuate with only minutes notice. Miraculously, only one person died. The city was rebuilt between 1904-1907 in an Art Nouveau style, and most of the downtown is still consistently in this style. The downtown is just wonderful to wander around in!

There is a very tall hill next to downtown called Aksla. There is set of stairs up to the top to a restaurant. The stairs were being rebuilt when we visited, so we needed to walk up a trail on the side of the hill that took much longer but was a very very nice walk. 

Our round-trip hike took about 90 minutes. I was aware how my legs have developed since I moved to Norway. They are now really good at walking for long distances uphill. I guess I've got Norwegian legs now!

The view from the top is extraordinary. The town fills a narrow peninsula, and steep islands fill the sea in every direction. We watched a cruise ship pull out of the harbor and head off to points unknown.

It was too short of a visit to Ålesund. I'd like to come back and have a few days with no work, just time to explore this very cool city.

Sunday, November 9, 2014


It's fårikål season in Norway. Fårikål, or får - i - kål, means "mutton in cabbage". I've eaten it several times before but never tried making it.

When Maggie heard I was making fårikål her reaction: "Yay! Authentic good Norwegian food!"

Here's the secret recipe: Chop a head of cabbage into 2-3 cm strips, put in a big pot, and add 800 g of cubed mutton. Add a little salt and pepper and boil for 2 hours. 20 minutes before it's done, cook up a pot of carrots and potatoes.

That's it. So easy. And for some weird reason, it's incredibly delicious. Happy autumn!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Salamander Natt

Creepy creepy art installation in the basement of the Sparebank building in downtown Tronheim. You enter a long dark room through thick black curtains. You can see nothing. Over several minutes your eyes adjust, and long ghastly figures appear, lining all of the walls. Their king sits in the center.

Freaky. And I love it.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Bathroom finished!

Built custom shelving, installed new track lighting and tiled the bathroom floor. 2 years to the day that Pam started ripping crappy tiles off the walls in the bathroom, it is done.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Peter is the tallest

Peter just passed me in height. At age 14. I'm 185 cm (≈ 6'1"), and he's about 5 mm taller now. Proud pappa, meg.