It’s a big day today, well at least for Matt and I: we’re off to hike up Mannen, a mountain overlooking the Vik and Haukland beaches.
The 4 of us left the island at 10:30 this morning headed for Leknes. We dropped Bonnie and Randi off at the shopping centre and then continued on to Haukland to meet up with our fellow mountain hikers: Ingbritt and her daughter Irya, Bent-Johnny and his 2 daughters Lina and Tonje, Åse-Margrethe’s daughter Anniken and son Anders.
Mannen’s elevation is 400 meters and the hike takes about 1 hour. In the hiking guide it’s considered easy, but I would venture to guess that’s not graded for a 67 year-old Cannuck who doesn’t do much hiking at home. Despite the cloudy/foggy weather it was an awesome experience and the view was breathtaking. Matt and I considered stopping part way, but we persevered and thought that “….we made it this far, so we might as well continue to the top”. And continue we did!
While the trip up a mountain exercises the lungs and heart, they get a break on the way down, but the legs know they’re working hard. The round trip was about 2.25 hours. After some high 5’s back at the cars, we returned to Leknes to pick up Bonnie and Randi at 2:30, about a 1/2 hour later than we expected.
By this time, we were all hungry, so we stopped at the Ristorante Milano for some very good pizza and lasagna. While there, a very Viking-looking guy came in – tall with long red hair – and sat behind us. I said to the others, “I know that guy.” Of course they didn’t believe me, but I turned around to shake his hand and say hello to he and his wife. Yet another cousin: Sigmunn, son of one of our first cousins who passed away earlier this year. The others were shocked that I actually did know him. He asked if we would be there for 5 minutes. He left and came back with a Høynes mug with a photo of the midnight sun. Høynes is the community where my mother was born.
We returned to Stamsund and straight to tante Arna’s house for coffee. Tante Arna is the last of our mother’s generation; she was married to Mom’s brother, Christian. Cousins Bjørnar, Bent-Johnny, Lina, Tonje, Rolv and his partner Inger were there as well.
We enjoyed our visit there until 6:30 and then drove to Uttakleiv to meet up with yet more cousins: Ingbritt, her daughter Irya and son Andreas, Lillian, Åse-Margrethe, her husband Arnfinn, son Anders and his wife Mayree and daughter Maylinn, daughter Anniken and her husband Odd-Andre, Even and his wife Grethe.
It was cold and foggy there, so we soon returned to Tørnholmen. We weren’t there long before Hans Christian, Dagny and their son’s friend, Markus, came to the door to show us their catch of the day: several good sized mackerel and 1 sei. They left 2 for us, which Matthew promises to fry up for us.
We’re trying to pack everything into 1 trip off the island to minimize the in-&-out of the boat for Randi. She is doing really well, although we do keep an eye on her….no walking on wet grass on her own and we regularly tell her, “Just don’t fall!”. The stairs in the house are fairly steep too, steeper than what we’re used to at home, so it’s a slow up-&-down there too. Actually, by the time we get back to the island at the end of the day, we’re all pretty much bagged and today was no exception.