Somewhere, just out of sight on the horizon, is Djupivogur the Unpronounceable. Nah, actually, it’s pronounced roughly Yupivour, but we don’t know that from direct experience, because the storm that had been following us from Greenland prevented us from going ashore as scheduled. Boo, hiss, sniff, but to no avail. However, we did get the benefit of an extra port in Norway, and it was a nice benefit indeed.
Molde, Norway, also known as the City of Roses, turns out to be a charming little place and an unexpected slice of Norwegian life.
Here’s where we first learned how expensive Norway is. These houses, between 3-5 million kroner, are just regular family houses. Divide by approximately 6 to get that in dollars, and wow, yikes! We talked to the realtor, who told us that they’re not at all luxury houses, just normally-priced dwellings.
We went into a small shopping mall seeking a non-tourist-priced lunch and ended up paying almost $50 for two portions of a chicken leg, a few salad leaves, and fries, with a glass of water. On the way out we passed this hair salon where a woman’s haircut is over $100, color is similarly priced, and even a man’s cut is about $75. Norway is beautiful but I don’t think we’ll be moving here anytime soon.
Speaking of beauty, here’s lovely Stine, our high school-aged guide at Molde’s fishing museum. Showing us boats that are made exactly as the Vikings made them, Stine says to us shyly “I am a Viking!” Later, though, when I gave her a tip, she asked if she could give me a hug
and told me it was the first tip she had ever gotten. “Norwegians are not very tippy” she said.
The museum is on a tranquil little island, reached by boat from downtown Molde. Inhabited until the 1970s, it’s now a museum-island that preserves the ancient Norwegian fishing and boating traditions.
Ever wonder what a whale’s stomach looked like? Here’s a dried one, and clearly Jonah never would have fit in there.
This is the fanciest, and most recent, of the island’s homes, all of which have the typical green and growing roofs.
It was hard to tear ourselves away from the peace and calm, but we also wanted to see the on-shore museum, a similar preservation of land-based Norwegian history.
Molde is colorful, approaching from the island.
At the museum, though, we see that painted houses are a relatively new invention.
I love the way Scandinavians collect old houses and buildings and gather them into culture-preserving outdoor museums.
We finished the day in good company, at a delightful little outdoor cafe, where Shel had this perfectly Norwegian snack.