Hidden paradise

Everything I have experienced so far in Norway could be summarized as  »peaceful ».

Today beats the game.



Two hours of bus rocking from the center of Bergen, offshore, sleeps Øygarden. Birds and sheep are masters of a kingdom split between the North Sea and the Bergen Bay. Here, the hills and the trees are about the same size. The water is so clear you can sea the fish fooling around between the seaweeds. Seagulls change shifts above the water, to never miss a good meal occasion. If you leave the coast and lose yourself in one of the many hiking or cycling paths, you will meet sheep and goats- no matter if they are black or white, they all sing in chorus. On the main road; large expanses of lawn, gracefully dotted with purple and yellow flowers merge into a wetland supervised by gulls and smaller birds. Further, when rocks and pines are growing everywhere, the crows are taking over the domain.

Shameless, I started the day in Øygarden with a nap in the sun. Dreaming on a rock, contemplating the ballet of the ducks and geese. I find their travel fascinating. Ducks are so loyal to each other, you will never see one on his own. Dozen of harmless ducks are quacking in a puddle. Left corner of the clear blue sky, a squad of 4 ducks perfectly assembled makes a dramatic entrance. Within a few seconds, all feather asses are flying away together.

When I was a kid there was that amazing musical about a little girl named Emilie. A night she was restless, she found comfort in her story book. There, all characters would come to life and take her on an adventure. She would talk to a big bird, begging him to fly her away; she would save bunnies from a very contagious cold and re-unite a sad witch with a prince who ignored he was charming. Laying down on the warn rock, losing my mind to the blue sky, I started singing the bird song to myself. How amazing would it be to snuggle between the feathers of a giant bird and to fly from a continent to another!

I grew up a little since and accepted the travel on big iron birds instead. It is not like in my dreams but it does the job. P1000997


The rest of the day was a show, of bright light and colors. Riding a bicycle up and down the island, I stopped a few times for short hikes to give me a bit of height. On the winding roads, riding in the rocky scenery, I felt a bit like Beep-Beep playing Coyote.


The last hike of the day opened the view on a clear skyline, drew by the mountains, looking over sea. Hoping from a rock to another, I am absorbed by the dizzying landscapes. The sea side, opening up a world of opportunities… a salty wind caressing my face (drying up my sweat), feeding my ideas and giving my energy. The bay side, grassy and adorably arranged with fishermen houses and the refreshing and escaping smell of pine trees.


By the bus stop, few meters down on the left side of the road, I discover a hidden treasure. I feel a bit like Cristoforo Colombo. A tiny creek, like I have seen dozen today; but this one is actually accessible by foot. The clear sand gives the water a deep turquoise note… irresistible! Foot bath, 5 seconds before definite freezing.

A day full of highlights, and finishing on a high note. I am claiming my Dutch side here, when I proudly announce I did not have to pay the ticket for my trip back to Bergen. Long story short, I am simply adorable. (Also the bank card machine was broken in both buses, but I do not think it is relevant)


Strawberry lunch in Hellesoy


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