The Retirees go Abroad – France Norway UK and Ireland – Kirkenes

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Its Nerida’s birthday. We meet at the breakfast table and she breaks open the gifts. Kerry kept her busy in Bodo whilst I secured the gift and despite carrying it with me in her company around Bodo she never once asked what it was that I bought.

It’s an early start and I have not had my walk (too f****n cold but I missed it) and feeling a bit grumpy. We are off to do dog sledding at the Ice Hotel in Kirkenes. Kirkenes is a town in Sør-Varanger Municipality in Finnmark county, in the far northeastern part of Norway. The town lies on a peninsula along the Bøkfjorden, an arm of the large Varangerfjorden. All aboard the bus with the tour led by our little Miss Heindriksen (we caught her hiding in the bus shelter to have a ciggie) and off we go turning right at the turn off to Murmansk USSR otherwise we would have been looking at Russian guns not Norwegian Huskies.

On arriving we had to change into our winter gear. We walked past the Gabba Restaurant – yes the Gabba. Then we got acquainted with the dogs. The dog sledding was good as for the first time I got to ride in the sled instead of helping the dogs push the damn thing. Bumpy ride but those little dogs raced across snow, ice and fjord without breaking into a sweat (it was -10 degrees). Getting dressed and undressed for these occasions is the killer as you feel like a blimp with all the gear on over the top of your own warm gear.

We also inspected the ice hotel which was different from our experiences in Quebec some years ago. I was not tempted to stay. We farewell Kirkenes and started our trip back to the South. It has been very dry in Norway with not much snow. Well that has changed as it has now been snowing for an hour and no sign of stopping. Oh yes this is where Kerry lost her IPhone. It is somewhere on the fiord.

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