Thursday 16 July - Monday 20 July
Finally, after a full day's drive I've stopped and parked my caravan near a fishing lake in Sikeå, a little village it seems. It has been pouring down from heaven all day and on several occasions I was skidding along from left to right because of the huge pools of water that had gathered on the highway. But I survived that scary part though you must know that driving with heavy rain all day as well as having to watch out for reindeer crossing the highway (the warning signs were well presented today) is very tiring. So at some point I took a turn into the woods, saw a sign and entered a tiny campsite with a disabled man with a very red nose (haha the rednosed reindeer - how does that song go again?) as the owner. Well, I'm not complaining especially not for 14 euros without electricity. Besides having promised several people to not camp in the middle of nowhere, the forests seem to be badly flooded and to have to pull your caravan out of the mud on your own is not really an option. Blommelstein has been a little pain in the a.. when Anne-Beth, my friend from Holland was here last week. As of today 'he' (definitely a he) was all happy and cooperative again and we managed to leave the last campsite within 15 minutes. Anne-Beth probably won't believe it.
Yesterday I dropped Anne-Beth off at the train station of Åre. Åre is about 180 kms from Trondheim, which I think is a well known ski location to many. I think if I would have kept on driving for about an hour from Åre, I would enter Norwegian country.
This district is incredibly beautiful (I seem to keep repeating myself). There's lots to do, also outside of the ski season, things like hiking, rafting, mountain biking and…..paragliding. If it were not for the weather I would have done that, but there will be ample opportunity over the next month or so. But let's go back a little.
In stead of driving on the highway only, we detoured slightly taking B-roads; this way you tend to see more. On the day we spent driving (last Thursday) we had rain most of the day with heavy downpour at the end of the day. The views on the way to Åre were stunning and Anne-Beth would be taking pics through the roof or out of the window. We made lunch in the rain and ate a very non-Italian pizza before moving on. I drove for about 7 hours in total I think (and got extremely drunk that night which is not surprising after such a long drive; Anne-Beth tucked me in). Once we arrived in Åre the sun started shining and we have had nothing but good weather until Saturday. We spent it chatting, hiking, going crazy in a hiking/sports store, chatting, drinking wine, chatting, eating, chatting….It has stayed sunny until 22-ish. At night it does not get dark as we know it. This will get worse the further north I go. Try sleeping when it is light all the time: it is quite a challenge. Yesterday was the first day the weather turned bad again, but as it was only a drizzle here and there, it was great to walk for a couple of hours around the area.
I've been told the weather gets better farther up north and that the south has all the rain now. Well, that would be good news for me but I have driven for about 7 hours again and it's still raining! I have had to bring out the cold weather gear though, which is not surprising both for being on higher altitudes at times and now that I'm moving more into the northern territories. I kept on saying to Anne-Beth about Åre: "I'll definitely be returning to this place sometime soon" to which she replied that I will come across so many more places that will catch my breath. And she's right. How many times have you experienced being in a place that makes you quiet and or feel small? Or appreciative of the beauty of nature's wonders like a waterfall? Well, the last couple of days we had a crushing waterfall as our view from the caravan (see pics).
AB and I had an interesting conversation about making space in one's life to do the things you really want to do, you know: follow your dream. If we compare our situations and what we dreamt of becoming as an adult, AB and I are completely different. She has knowingly chosen the unstable and unpredictable, or should I even say, hard life of a dancer. She has made that choice at an early age. I, however, somehow found myself doing HRM stuff one day. When talking about what I wanted to be when I was a child, I had no particular goal, at least not that I can remember. I just loved reading and drawing. My love for words and images has only increased as I grew older, but the time I spent on those loves seem to have taken a minor place in my adult life. They are competing with the many other interests I wrote about earlier but I want this to change. I'm hoping to find a better balance with what I do in HRM and spending more or better quality time on exploring my creativity, whatever the result of that journey may be. I don't think I would even want to quit working in the field of HRM completely, I love it too much and it is challenging to so many parts of my person, the problem-solver, the initiator, the psychologist, the entrepreneur, the mediator.
Well, you may be bored stiff by now following my contemplations on what to do with my life. But surely I'm not the only one who is fighting these kinds of inside battles at some point. Could you honestly say you are following your dream and doing what you love doing most?
Btw. I must give all credit of my writing to Mr. Hanna, my High School English teacher. In no way have I been pressured into writing so…