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Bodo

Adorable Chick

NORWAY & DENMARK diary : Day 10 - 09 April 2019

Bodo (pronounced Boo-daa) is a town that lies just above the Arctic Circle, in Norway. The town receives sunlight almost all parts of the year. It is supposed to be windier here, than most of Norway. Our experience in Bodo was limited to a single day, that too indoors. Of course there are tourist options here with a few museums and a national park. We mainly landed here for transit reasons i.e to travel further south in the country. Our experience here was therefore limited. Nevertheless, the climate was pleasant and sunny. We reached the Bodo ferry port, from Svolvaer, by 10 am. We had booked ourselves in an Airbnb accommodation that was close to the railway station, due to a train that we had to catch that night.

We waited patiently at the ferry port since our Airbnb host had arranged a taxi/ mini van for us, which was yet to arrive. A few minutes later we were informed by him that he would do the honours himself due to the taxi driver backing out at the last moment. He was kind enough to make two trips in his car to ensure that the 10 of us got to his accommodation. He helped us with everything , including our luggages. The house was located in Nordlysbuen. It was a quiet neighbourhood that evidently hosted residences of all sizes. It seemed to be situated in the heart of Bodo. As always, we wished we had stayed here for another day, for exploration.

The apartment was on the first floor with wooden a stairway running up. It was quite a task to get all our luggages up. After much push and pull we finally settled down. The host was a pleasant youngster. We Invited him over for dinner that evening. He willingly agreed to be treated to some unusual Indian food. He was impressed that we had carried our spices all the way from India and couldn't wait to taste. He left after a while with a promise to be back that evening and also to drop us off at the railway station, after dinner. The kitchen in the apartment was lovely & chic. We all quickly freshened ourselves and rested for an hour or so on the comfortable beddings and mattresses. There was soon killing silence all around.

Tidy Desk

It was evident that all of us were tired. It was around 12 noon, when we got to cooking up a simple lunch. We had our fill. We joked around, chatted a bit and discussed our next action plan. Initially, we were to walk up to CITY NORD , a nearby shopping centre and look around. But the group preferred to stay indoors and rest up. As a result, two of us ventured out to get bread and some other groceries to keep ourselves self-sufficient for the next day's breakfast, which would be in the train. The rest of them started planning for dinner to please our VERY SPECIAL GUEST.

My cousin & I got out and were on streets looking out for a nearby grocery store. Not sure if the 09th of April was a National holiday out there, but in broad day light the streets seemed so deserted. We walked around hunting for people to show us directions . It was funny. We laughed all along wondering which way to go. We hit the main road and saw a few vehicles fly past at irregular intervals. All we needed was some guidance to the nearest market place / shop. We caught sight of a lady, ran up to her, asking for directions. Unfortunately, she didn't seem to understand English. She replied in Norwegian and walked away shrugging. We stood helpless, looking in all directions, waiting for the next human to appear. Finally, after a while, we spotted an old lady crossing the road. We walked and waited for her to reach us at our side of the road. On a closer look she seemed around 90 years old, dressed in red with a hat, all wrinkled & slow, yet smiling away. On hearing our query in English, she nodded with a YES first. She then held my hand. Her touch somehow felt warm & magical . I instantly felt this indescribable closeness to her. She instructed us correctly in her shivering, kind voice. We thanked her and said our goodbyes, before making our way. My cousin & I couldn't help discussing her for a while. I could never get her off my thoughts and have never forgotten her till date. The thought of sharing this feeling of mine, in the open, hadn't occurred until now. Following her instructions, we successfully got to a store. We purchased our requisites and stepped out to return. Suddenly, each street seemed alike. Though I was always sure of routes, I felt dodged here. We walked around in circles whilst suggesting to each other the "right road" before trodding on it. Before long, we got onto a "sub-street ", but walked up & down the same lane, trying to recollect our onward route. The google maps came handy as I had the address of the accommodation by heart - a result of my thorough planning I guess. We got back home safely.

The dinner was getting ready in hands of my other mates. The smell of spices surrounded the house as we entered. We were soon done with cooking and cleaning. The kind host arrived at 6:45 pm with his cute little dog "Albis". The children were delighted to find a new friend. They cuddled him and played around, as we sat at the dinner table sharing food and our views & experiences with the host. The host loved our cooking. He had tasted Indian food earlier, but "this" he said was something very different & nice. By around 8 pm, we cleared ground and were dropped by the host at the railway station. He not only ensured getting us to the station on time, but also helped a lot with our luggages.

The drive to the station lasted less than 10 minutes. We were all set to leave Bodo. The sleeper train was booked in advance. It arrived on time. We bid farewell to our host, boarded the train and in no time settled down in our own sleeper class cabins. Read further story under "Journey Southward".