Sunday, July 10, 2011

How did we get here???

Well, we have successfully made it to Oslo, Norway.

For those regulars following, you know that Shaun and myself had the pleasure of taking an overnight ferry from Copenhagen, through the North Sea, along the coast of Sweden up to Norway.  Well, the "ferry" turned out to be more of a cruise...bars, restaurants, casino, bars, dance club, games, bars.  I had the foresight to purchase some tall cans of Tuborg Guld before leaving for the cruise to avoid the ridiculously priced beers.  Winning.

Once through customs and once we found our rooms, it was time to do what everyone does when they're on a boat...drink and be merry.  Led by the charge of our Danish studio instructor, Bo (who was dressed in tight white Euro-pants and a blue and white striped shirt - think Cabin Boy-) we proceeded to drink and take in the awesome sights of sailing up the sound, with Denmark to our west, and Sweden to our east.

Oh hey Denmark, didn't see you there.

Sweden.  See you in a couple days.

It was an unreal experience and Bo was quick to point out landmarks along the way.  Then, it was time to hit the duty free shop.  Good things and bad things eventually came from this first trip to duty free, where everything was significantly cheaper, especially the alcohol.

First, I was "Iced" by a one, Mr. Shaun Lynch.  Damn it.


Karma's a bitch though because not much later, his sunglasses were literally ripped off his shirt and swept away to the North Sea by strong winds on deck.


We drank and explored the boat and prepped for our buffet dinner around 9.  The wind was constantly howling and it made for some nice photo ops.

I'd say we were all feeling pretty good at dinner time.  For those of you who know me well enough, you know that I have in the past been a pretty selective eater...since travelling that has changed, and last night was no different.  Fish, to shrimp, to meatballs, to pork, and (naturally) chicken wings!  I dominated at least 15 wings.

Now, my words cannot begin to describe the way the rest of the night went, but I'll try.  Rolling around with 6 packs, we explored more of the boat, continued to get to know each other, some swimming in the pool, and eventually we scouted out the night club, which Bo was really pushing for us to experience.  Now when we got there, we ran into 2 of our other classmates, who, were the only 2 dancing on the dance floor...but they were tearing it up.  That's what happens when 2 people punish 4 bottles of wine.

You'll notice there's no more photo documentation of the evening from this point.  At some point I made a power move, and sensing what direction the night might be heading, decided to put my camera away just to be safe.

After feeling out the place, we didn't feel it was a fun atmosphere so we left the club only to find about 8 of our other classmates sitting on the main staircase right out front, just drinking and we partook, naturally.  This is where the night starts to run together a bit (oh, it's well after midnight at this point).  I run into Shaun again for the first time in awhile so we catch up.  Seems he was move makin' as I expected.  Bottles of Fisk and Vodka made their rounds (thank you duty free) and we all, young and old, male and females, just started ripping swigs from the bottle as we tried to decide what to do next.  Then we heard a relatively new song coming from the club so we peaked our heads in only to see it's packed and the dance floor is going off.  No words were said, no eye contact was made, we all just instinctively made a B-Line for the dance floor to begin to dance our asses off.  For what felt like days we danced up a storm.  I know personally I was swing dancing like a madman, and when LMFAO's Party Anthem came on, we all just went nuts.  Eventually we all began to tire out (or so we thought) and one by one we dropped and decided to leave the club and go up on the top deck to get some air (and yes, the sun only set for about an hour, so it was nice and bright).

I pause here to say that, perhaps the aforementioned doesn't seem too too crazy...basically just drinking and dancing and having a generally good time on a cruise to a foreign country with cool people.   It was a lot of fun and we spent all day today piecing the night together...I now press on.

After getting some air, we decide to hop a guardrail to explore the open part of the ship just in front of the ship's smoke stack...naturally.  We ended up dancing and posing for photos since the wind was ripping through made for some funny pictures.  Next thing you know, a couple of us were scaling the ladder of the exhaust tower on top of the cruise ship.  Yes, that's right, climbing the ladder of an active cruiseliner's smokestack.  Windy. Rediculous. Worth it.

 Here I come

What a view

When we realized how high up our accomplished hike was, we all sort of were in shock.  It's at least 9 stories up off the face of the water.  Would I do it again?  Absolutely.

At breakfast, there was Bo.  In his thick Danish accent, "Ahah, yes.  The party crew?"  My response was (eyes glued to my plate of food) "Bo, you don't even know."

It was an awesome experience and it was definitely a great opportunity to get to know our studio instructor and classmates outside the school setting.

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