Last bike ride in Norway

Last weekend, me and Karolina went on a bike ride from Laksevåg in Bergen, through Nesttun and Lysekloster to Fanafjellet and then back to town. It was a lovely, sunny day, and we had a pleasant ~50km ride, but what I didn’t realize that day is that it was our last bike ride in Norway, at least for the foreseeable future. The bike on the picture above, Kona Jake, has just been sold, because Karolina is moving to Munich this Thursday, and I will follow her in about two-three weeks. My contract at Bergen University College is over since mid-July, and my PhD education at the University of Bergen is almost finished (I will hand in my thesis within the next two weeks). We’re moving out, starting a new chapter of our lives in Germany.

There’s many, many things that I will miss once I move, but I think the absolutely fantastic nature of Bergen and its surroundings will be chief among them. If you like cycling and/or mountains, and you can afford it, you should definitely visit Western Norway. I’ve been to a lot of places around the world but in my opinion nothing comes even close to the beauty of this land.

You will be missed, Norway.

How I traveled from Norway to Poland for Christmas this year

I traveled by train, and this post is an account of my experiences and a warning for others who might be attempting the same thing. It costed a lot of money, but most importantly, it was a very exhausting and stressful experience. So if you’re reading this and planning on doing the same thing – don’t.

First of all: why did I do it? Well, there’s a couple of reasons. First was curiosity – I like trains, and I really wanted to try that kind of long international train travel. Second was finance – plane tickets have a tendency of becoming ridiculously expensive before Christmas, and I had a hard time finding the sort of tickets I wanted (BGO–WAW, POZ–BGO), so I figured that trains can be cheaper. In the end they weren’t, but they weren’t significantly more expensive either, and given that I’ve had a lot of flying last month, I decided I’ll give the train a chance.

Secondly: how did I do it? Well I checked a couple of possible connections via the best railway connection finder in the world, and I decided to go like this:

  • morning train from Bergen to Oslo;
  • Oslo to Katrineholm;
  • night train from Katrineholm to Lund;
  • Oresund train accross the sea to Copenhagen;
  • ICE 38 from Copenhagen to Berlin;
  • and a EuroCity from Berlin to Poznań, where I’d meet with my friends and continue to my parents’ place by car.

So that was the plan, and it looked good. In the end I managed to arrive in Poznań on time, but there was a lot of stress and some adventures on the way.

Continue reading “How I traveled from Norway to Poland for Christmas this year”

Norway in the eyes of a foreigner

After a long period of searching for a PhD scholarship I finally got a great offer from Bergen University College, and in the 2nd half of March I’ve joined the staff of Department of Computer Engineering as a member of DISTECH research group. This means a lot has changed in my life, because apart from changing a job/school I’ve also moved to another country. This country happens to be Norway and I have some thoughts about it I’d like to share.

Continue reading “Norway in the eyes of a foreigner”