"Powellite" Bagnall 3ft gauge locomotive at Black Sands, Victoria - 1938. Photograph: P.G. Dow

09 August, 2010

Sunday 8 August at Trondheim

Found out what the music festival was all about, not a musical festival at all, but the 2010 World Orienteering Championships, with teams from about thirty countries each country having about ten team members. The official opening ceremony was today, but the event goes for all this week. The opening ceremony was done in a very Norewgian manner, i.e. it was very well organised in a very laid back manner, with no signs of over-bearing officiousness. The general public could mingle with the contestants and the organisers. Because of that I was able to ask an official what was going on. Google 2010 World Orienteering if you want more information.

This morning I spent most of my time in Trondheim's religious precinct, and there certainly is one, dominated by the magnificent Nidaros Cathedral standing in it's own extensive beautifully maintained grounds. The cathedral dates back to around the fourteenth century. Close by, and even nearer the city square is another very old church, visible in the photograph of the Olav Tryggvasson Statue. Olav Tryggvasson founded Trondheim in 997 or thereabouts. Also near the Cathedral is the Archbishop's Palace, parts of which date back to the twelfth century. In the same general area are a number of other churches, and church schools. Private schools are not common in Norway, the great majority of people seeming to prefer government schools at all levels, and all levels of education seem to be completely free, and the education system of high quality.

At 10:30 the bell of Nidaros Cathedral started to sound, and I thought it sounded a little tinny. But almost immediately the bell of a nearby competing church started to sound, and the two working together sounded very good. They continued for about five minutes. Then repeated this performance half an hour later.

Nidaros Cathedral has a coffee shop and souvenir shop, so I bought a cup of coffee and a long rectangular object (lro) for morning tea. Don't know what the lro was but it looked intriguing and turned out to taste pretty good. Seemed to be made of similar material to a croissant, but was bigger, and had swirls of good healthy dark chocolate going through it.

The old building I saw yesterday which is the original Trondheim railway station, is in this area. It is now part of a religious building. Spent quite a lot of time walking around this area, which is beautiful in many places, especially along the banks of the river.

After that I went for a ride on a tram, but that deserves a separate post, and will get one.

After my affairs with the trams I wandered around the business district of Trondheim, then saw some of the opening ceremony of the 2010 WOC.

This time I had dinner at an Irish Pub Restaurant, selected something simple and basic - shepherds pie - and very good it was too.

Trondheim is the most northerly point I go to on this visit. It is not far from Hell, but I am not intending to go to Hell, as apart from the railway station name board, it is not a very interesting place. The weather today was absolutely perfect, blue sky, a few clouds, sunshine, warm, with a little breeze. A total contrast to the last time I was here, late in June 2008, when it was very hot and very humid, and because it was close to the summer solstice and so far north, the sun hardly went down at all at night. As a result there was no relief from the heat and humidity at night, and they don't bother air-conditioning hotels here because they rarely need it.

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