Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sailing the Sognefjord

"A Room with a View 2 -- The Sognefjord"
Balestrand, Norway

In the sketchbook
"Memories of Copenhagen"

We left Oslo this morning on an 8:11 train bound for the longest fjord in the world. We climbed above the tree line where we had a few minutes to take a glacier photo. At Myrdal we changed to the Flamsbana Railway that took us on an hour-long steep descent to Flam. There Bob and I left the "Norway in a Nutshell" tourists and boarded a ferry to Balestrand on the Sognefjord. In spite of a slipup on my part with dates when I made the reservation, the lovely people at the Balestrand Hotel were able to accommodate us in a fjord-view room due to a cancellation. The first watercolor sketch shows the view from our window and balcony. We've been blessed with incredibly nice weather and today is picture perfect.

The second piece was a continuation on the shoe theme. I thought of the 39% of trips being made by bicycle in Copenhagen and the wonderful way the city dwellers just jump on their bike in whatever they are wearing and ride to their destination. CPH as the brochures call it has spent many years building a liveable community where people can walk, cycle, and mingle. I thought about the various shoes on the cyclists, unlike so many US cyclists, including me, who often wear special shoes. Then I picked up the CPH brochure and saw a photo by a man who's become famous photographing cyclists in the city and posting them on his blog. It was the image I had in my mind, so I used it as the basis for this sketch and hopefully have given proper credit. You can check out Mikeal Colville-Anderson's two blogs if you are curious:
http://www.copenhagenize.com/
http://www.copenhagencyclechic.com/

Tomorrow we will do some hiking and relaxing.

8 comments:

Barbra Joan said...

Looking forward to hearing about another day of your trip. How wonderful to see all of these new places. I get excited just seeing them on Google View! ok, Mary thats my ha ha for the day... Keep those little travel sketches going. Barbra Joan

Charlene Brown said...

Hope tomorrow's relaxing includes some painting -- your fjord is absolutely lovely! Enjoyed your bicycle footwear painting and the photo link -- they seem to make up for their lack of helmets (do the kids wear them?) with well marked cycle lanes and a nice absence of cars.

hwfarber said...

Your blog is so well named, Mary. I love both of today's works.

Peggy Stermer-Cox said...

Hi Mary, I'm excited about your trip. I visited Sognefjord in 1976. It was beautiful. And, like you, I was struck by how much the Scandinavians use their bicycles all year around.

I like your paintings and think you're on to something about the shoes! Have fun!

Mary Paquet said...

Friends, thanks so much for your comments.

Barbara and Charlene, I plan to do more small paintings. I just sketched one before breakfast of a typical Norwegian fjord home and the scenery surrounding it. Charlene, you are the master of travel sketches and inspire me.

Hallie, thanks -- I am an adventure lover. Does that make me an Extreme Artist?

Peggy, this area is so very beautiful. I am happy that you got to spend time here. In 1976 I was busy with small children and did not travel as far from home.

Mary Paquet said...

I forgot to answer Charlene's question regarding helmets. The crash rate is quite a bit lower per hour for bicyclists in Copenhagen than in the US. I presume both their bicycle accommodations which include whole cycle tracks with traffic lights and there huge numbers makes the drivers very careful. Quite a few children wear helmets. but not all.

AutumnLeaves said...

What a beautiful view of the fjord! Soft and dreamy...

The woman in heels and skirt on a bike makes me smile! Who'd a thunk...?

jyothisethu said...

mary,

wonderful picture and wonderful travelogue...

looking for more from you...