Friday, 2 October 2009


On the whole the weather in Rende (Cosenza) was rubbish - dull every day, with rain at least once a day. (Luckily that was most afternoons whilst Oskar had his nap)
Our first trip to look at the sights of Cosenza was after Nils' conference had finished on the Wednesday lunchtime. We fully intended having a look around and finding a nice restaurant, but we struggled to find somewhere. You see, we'd eaten pizza every night since we had arrived and wanted to try something else. Unfortunately, we could find anything BUT pizza. Also it was raining heavily, so we decided to head back to our hotel, which by this time was open for dinner. Nils and I had some lovely seafood pasta and the chef made a nice bowl of tomato spaghetti for Oskar.

The following day, we went back to Cosenza to have a look around in the daylight. Despite the rain, we tried as best we could to take some photos and keep an eye on Oskar, who wanted to jump in every single puddle. Oskar quickly found out that unless you are wearing wellies, your feet and socks get wet;)
All the statues were along Corso G. Mazzini.

Cosenza Old Town

After walking down the main street in Cosenza, with the statues, we wandered into the old town of Cosenza:

Rende ( Cosenza ) - Metropolis aka Brokelandsheia!!!

This place was a saving grace....For me = shopping heaven!, For Oskar = toy shop, For Nils = nothing;), For us all on the day we arrived....FOOD! First thing we wanted after we'd dropped off our luggage at the hotel was food. However, the hotel restaurant had finished lunch and wasn't open again until 8pm. So, we went out looking for somewhere to eat....nothing! Then we walked a bit further along the road and voila! Shopping Centre (Metropolis) AND it was open on a Sunday...Hurray! Nils doesn't like shopping, but even he was happy that there was at least a supermarket there. Even better that they had a food court:) So, we sampled our first Italian pizza. We also quickly realised that speaking English wasn't very useful! Nils found the guy at the pizza place spoke some German, whiched helped. But no-one spoke anything other than Italian. But who cared!, we had some food and we were satisfied:-)
Oskar called the shopping centre "Brokelandsheia", because there was a Spar at Metropolis, just like there is at our local shoping area.

Rende (Cosenza) - Robinson Park

Oskar and I visited Robinson park a couple of times during our 5 night stay in Rende. It was a 20 minute walk from our hotel. Oskar and I spent our days together, whilst Nils was attending a conference at the University of Calabria

Travelling to Italy (via Bologna)

The day we started the first leg to Southern Italy (Saturday 19th September)was busy and stressful. Nils and I were happy that Oskar had been given the all clear to fly ( visited the Dr's on the Wednesday & Friday ), but just to add a bit of drama, I had developed an eye infection! I also, had seen the Dr the day before and had been given a prescription for penicillin (just in case)! Typically the new symptoms appeared after the consultation, so off we went on the Saturday morning to Arendal. It was a pleasant suprise that Nils' half cousin was the Dr on duty that morning. The diagnosis for me : eye AND outer ear infection! So, we then trotted off to the pharmacy to pick up eye and ear ointment...! After waiting " forever" for the prescription, we went to the supermarket next door to grab some bread rolls and bottled water for lunch. Nothing wrong in that, except I leaned across and picked up a divider for the conveyor belt at the check-out and placed it next to the loaf of bread the lady behind me had put down. BIG MISTAKE!!! This lady started ranting on and on about not wanting me to touch her bread (which I didn't, nor wanted to!) Nils and I were both perplexed by this big show of emotion by her! We were even more suprised when she followed us out of the store, still ranting?!! What was it all about, you ask? Well, all we can think is that she thought I had Swine Flu! Which, if I had, then I would have been far to ill to be out and about shopping. Yes, I looked rough! :Puffy, sore eyes, but really.....! We then got in the car and drove home..after all we needed to finish packing and still had a 90 minute drive to Torp Airport! We managed all of organisation and got to Torp in good time. Phew, I could now relax for a little while.

Oskar and I at Torp Airport. I decided to wear the sunglasses to that my "look" didn't offend anyone;)


Oskar and Nils looking out of the window at the sunset.

Oskar and I at the railway station at Lamazia Terme.

We actually arrived at Lamazia Terme on the Sunday lunchtime, after spending an overnight at the Sheraton Hotel at Bologna Airport. We were only there for the night, arriving at 22:30 and left at 07:45 the following morning for our flight to Lamazia Terme. Once we landed at the airport, we caught a bus to the train station. We got on a train to Cosenza, which was near to our final destination at Rende. The train ride was okay, even though we had to change trains at Paola. Nils also couldn't convert his internet confirmation into train tickets as the machines operated in Italian only..just like the local people;) Finally we arrived at our hotel (After an expensive taxi ride from the station) at 15:30. We had all arrived in one piece (just-LOL!) Oskar's ears had been fine on both flights..mine had not, but I wasn't bothered, just glad to have made the journey!

Nice 6th-11th September

After the terrible weather during the Summer, we were all looking forward to the fact that September meant we would find some Mediterranean sunshine. But as life has its twists and turns, things don't always go to plan:(
We checked in and printed off our boarding cards for our flight to Nice (via Amsterdam). Nils took Oskar out for a while, whilst I packed for the trip. On returning at teatime, Oskar said he had "ow ow ears"! So, we took him to Legevakten in Arendal and were told he had an inner ear infection in both ears..."Oskar can't fly" So, we collected the antibiotics and drove home.
Once home, Nils had to contact KLM to advise that Oskar and I were not travelling. So on Sunday 6th September, Nils made his own way to Nice. For us back in Norway, it was a challenging week at home. Oskar was in no pain/discomfort due to the medication, so was a little bu**er - really naughty and playing up his Mummy! Our washing machine also broke down and I had the humiliation of having problems with my new bank card that wouldn't work, as I didn't have the correct PIN for it ((sigh)) Lastly, Oskar had an allergic reation to his antibiotics, so we had another trip to the doctors for more medication! So we were really happy when Nils came home on the Friday evening.
I've been to Nice on a couple of times, so was really wanting to go again, but maybe there will be a next time soon? Nils is very much a "country boy", but he liked Nice, so here are a few of his photos:

Nils at the harbour side in Nice

Nice Harbour

Old Town, Nice.

Croissant eating pigeon!