Rain, rain go away, come again another day!

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Europe » Norway » Western Norway » Bergen
August 24th 2016
Published: September 20th 2016
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So the YMCA turned out to be 'non eventful' rather than 'fun' to stay at, but as this doesn't span very well and doesn't fit the chorus line I pretend it was fun after all and all is well in the world of cheesy Village People land. I'd found myself sharing a 6 bed mixed dorm with a group of 5 Spanish friends, older than the usual youth hostel demographic, probably due to the horrendously high cost of literally EVERYTHING in Norway making hostels an accommodation choice that some wouldn't otherwise pick! They didn't speak much English, which since I speak about 3 words of Spanish I found pretty impressive. They were really apologetic in advance about the early time they'd be leaving in the morning and hoped they wouldn't disturb me too much. As it turned out I awoke at about 8.30am to find the room completely empty and quiet, beds turned down, everything gone, including the group of Spanish friends. They had been so quiet I'd slept through their departure. Amazing! I don't know how they did it as I'm usually such a light sleeper. Gracias amigos!

I look out of the window and find that the warning I'd been given by a work colleague about it always raining in Bergen seems to be true. It's absolutely chucking it down and looks set in for the day. After stretching my lie in to the maximum check out time allows I leave my pack in luggage storage and head out to find a supermarket for some supplies. I go for my tried and tested hostel option of eggs. They are quick to cook and versatile - scrambled for breakfast, boiled for packed lunches and omlettes for tea. Quick is essential in hostels as there's usually too many people and not enough cookers and everyone wanting to eat at pretty much the same time. I wince as I receive the total at the check out and begrudgingly hand over yet more Norwegian Krona. So much for 'afjordable Norway'!

I head back to the YMCA and spend a relaxing day catching up on blogging, downloading and looking at photos and reading my book. I also sneak use of their kitchen to whip myself up some brunch. No-one seems to mind or even notice that I'm still here despite having checked out hours ago and I wonder how many of the other people hanging around are actual guests. Maybe some of them have never checked in and just come in off the street to make use of the facilities when it's raining. I know I shall if I find myself in Bergen in the rain in the future.

When it gets to around 3 o'clock I decide I might as well make my way to my next hostel, the Bergen Montana up in the mountains above the city. I pick up my rucksack from the luggage store and walk through the down pour to the bus station, by way of the train station - the map I have isn't exactly very large and I can't be bothered to get my reading glasses out! I eventually find my bus stop and when the bus arrives find myself packed in with loads of locals commuting back from the city to their various homes in the suburbs. The bus has a handy scrolling list of stops on a screen so I can see when I need to get off. Luckily I'm not the only one going to the hostel so find myself chatting to an Aussie girl after we get off at our stop and walk up the hill. She and the others all seem short of supplies as they veer off into the nearby supermarket so I continue on my own and go to check in at the reception. I'm in a 4-bed female only dorm this time - my favourite. I'm getting my bed sorted and unpacking a few things when in comes one of my room mates. It's the Australian girl I'd met when I was getting off the bus! What a coincidence. I seem to be making a habit of meeting people and then finding out later that they are sharing a room with me. All the more surprising here as there are loads and loads of rooms on about three floors. We have a long chat, she's a lovely girl. I do love meeting people when I'm hostelling. A lot of the time the conversations are pretty boring after a while - where are you from, how long have you been here, where else are you going, what have you done here? have you done x, y, z and then compare notes about the same things you've done or are going to do. It's refreshing when you find someone you can have a proper talk with about more interesting things - the state of the world, politics, life, the universe and everything.

Later on I go to the kitchen area and realise that my eggs idea was a good one, especially at this hostel where there are literally only two hobs for all the mass of people wanting to cook. I nip in as soon as I see an opening - ha! Ninja omlette a go go! After my food I find a cosy spot on a sofa with a plug socket nearby - the omnipresent hunt for charging points in hostels is a trial you have to bear when choosing this level of accommodation. You would think they could sort this one out. It's the obvious upgrade and really cheap to do - just whack in a few extra sockets around the place and some socket splitters (or whatever they're called) and everyone would be happy instead of stressed out that they may not get their phone/camera/laptop charged for the next day. If they could put some in small lockable boxes that would be even better so you could leave your precious equipment without having to sit with it. Far too logical and useful!

I'm getting to a really good bit in my book, psychological drama, murder mystery kind of thing. Girl on a Train - I think it's going to be made into a film. Very Hitchcock like. So have a chocolate, coke and reading fest for the rest of the day. I also work out where I need to go tomorrow to catch the cable car up the mountain. The weather forecast isn't looking great but it's my only chance to do the long walk up in the mountains that I've got planned for my time in Bergen so I figure I may as well go even if it is drizzling.

There's another girl arrived in the room when I get back there. She's really bubbly and chatty but I don't catch her name despite her telling me it about three times. She's Chinese and has a strong accent., lovely, but sometimes hard to understand. And so to bed and some late night Neflix rubbish to watch before sleep. My first day of bad weather over. It's actually been quite nice to not DO anything much. I really should go on one of these relaxation type holidays one time just to see what it's like. I doubt I'd be able to keep it up for long. I think I'd just get bored of lazing about all day every day doing nothing. Anyway, nos da!


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