Roadtrip through Andalusia

Yesterday we got back from an amazing road-trip through southern Spain. What a diverse area; from scolding dry deserts to lush green mountain creeks; from ancient fortresses to modern solar energy plants! All along the way delicious local food.

 
 
 
 
 
                       

The Taste of Summer

This weekend I made two nice sirups from plants in my garden, spruce shoots and dandelion. 

Both recipes are essentially the same. Collect spruce shoots or dandelion flowers (only the yellow petals), put in a pot, cover with water, boil for 30 minutes, pour mass through a sieve into another pot and weigh, add 2/3 of weight sugar, slowly boil to a slightly viscous consistency, and finally fill into bottles. For better durability, I boil the slightly opened bottles in a half full water-bath for about 30 minutes.

Smart-Greenhouse

I’m working on my DIY Smart Greenhouse …

  • Automated heater control, ? check
  • Automated ventilation control, ? check
  • Remote monitoring and configuration, ? check

 

Now that the greenhouse has a comfortably controlled atmosphere, it is time to move the tomatoes and chillies outside and into their new smart home. I prepared the earth and filled the pots, now it is time that the first plants follow.

 

Finally Snow!

After a rather murky and rainy December, snow finally arrived short after midnight of the first day of the new year. As my last day of new-years-holidays turned out to be a perfect cold and sunny winter day, me and a friend went out to Bymarka for a nice cross-country skiing trip. The beautiful sunshine also lured Odin, our local free-roaming pony, out of his shed. The trip of course included a waffles-and-hot-chocolate-stop at Skistua and some wilderness skiing along an unprepared forest trail.

 

Following the theme of my previous post, I ended the day with a nice gypsy-jazz concert with Leslie Dawn Knowles (violin), Mark Tetreault (tuba), and Skjalg Raaen (guitar) at Ila Brainnstasjon.
  

Autumn and Winter – The Concert Season

Now that the evenings are getting darker again, I spontaniously went to Digs/BEAR for a concert of 2/3 Harakiri to open the concert season. When I first saw them about two years ago at Verstedhallen, I was blown away by the intense stage-presence of the singer. Since then I have seen him a couple of times in various combinations at the Sunday-Jam-Session at Antikvariatet (of which he is the owner).
The setting at Digs/BEAR worked really well. They were playing inside the big front-window facing the street, much to the confusion of some passing pedestrians.


2/3 Harakiri @ Digs/BEAR      2/3 Harakiri @ Digs/BEAR
2/3 Harakiri @ Digs/BEAR

Explore Vesterålen and Lofoten

The first two days in Andenes were a perfect beach camping holiday. 25C, crystal clear water, ice-cream, BBQ on the dunes!
Beach Camp Yay, ice-cream!
Find the Fish Sunset at the Beach

After this nice rest, I travelled on and visited the space center near Andenes, which hosts a launch site for rockets as well as many ground-based scientific instruments. It also provides space education to children and adults.

Andøya Space CenterSpace Antennas Warning Rocket Propellant Rocket Science

Through AirBnB I had found the hostel-boat Sjøblomsten in Sortland but had issues booking it. I thought I’d just give it a try on good luck and I right away found the boat right in the center of the city. To my luck, the manager was around by coincidence. I had the boat to myself 🙂
MS Sjøblomsten Historic MS Sjøblomsten

The next day, I spontaneously added a flight to Leknes on Lofoten to my Explore Norway ticket and hitchhiked to a camping place near Flakstad where I was planning to meet with a friend from Trondheim the following day. When we started around midday, Moltinden, the mountain we choose, was still covered in fog and clouds. About half-way-up, the clouds started to resolve and we had a beautiful view over the whole area.
View from Moltinden Me on Moltinden View from Moltinden Top View from Moltinden Top

After this topptur I headed towards Reine from where I took the boat to Kjerkfjorden in order to hike ti the Horseid beach. During the day I had beautiful weather. Around eight in the evening the predicted rain clouds arrived with surprising speed and around midnight the rain started. It didn’t stop until the next afternoon, which made the hike back a little less comfortable. Still, the remotene beauty of the beach is impressing!
Reine on Lofoten
The view from the pass to Horseid Beach
Horseid Beach Evening nap at Horseid Beach Camping on Horseid Beach
Cloud closing in on Horseid Beach

With a brief stopover in Bodø I headed back to the green flatlands of Trøndelag. Home sweet home!

Norway is not made for ass sitting in Lofoten