A Travellerspoint blog

Norway

Family Ties

Relax. I'm okay. No misfortune has befallen me. Just been a little lax on the bloggy blogs. Not due to a crippling case of writes block, well maybe, or a debilitating RSI, just old fashioned been doing stuff and talking. But don't worry. Here I am. With a final instalment of Norwegian flavour. But thankyou for your concern. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy that people are deriving a small amount of entertainment from my ponderous ponderings, perhaps.

Allright. So today's adventures were a little late in their commencement, due to my decision to act like a bear readying himself for Winter. Yes, I may have started hibernating, because as is a popular saying these days, Winter is coming. Well, could appear to be here. A late start it was for me. A foggy morning was the greeting when I finally roused myself from slumber. Fantastic view. A little on the chilly side though, but that's how the world works.

The mission for today, head into town, disembark the train at Carl Berners Plass and walk down through Sofienberg, through Grünerløkka and down to the Modern Art Gallery to see some overpriced Damien Hirst works. The actual reality of what occurred was, a little off the mark. Disembarked, having scored a tourist map yesterday, felt confident that I knew whereabouts I was heading. Oslo is strangely smaller than maps would have you believe, all of a sudden found myself cruising through Tøyen and bang smack in the middle of Grønland. With my helpful inclusion of suburb names, you could conceivably play along at home, once again. So, reversed direction and headed back through some familiar streets to yesterdays haunts.

The photographic pickings were slim today. Had picked the veritable branches clean. Did, however, manage to find a few more hidden large murals and some little plastic robot monsters that I first noticed yesterday. Also discovered, that these were placed, inconspicuously throughout Oslo by none other than the 1UP crew from Berlin. Side note, one of said crew were interviewed, identity concealed as is the norm and said he thought he has spray painted 1UP around Berlin upwards of 1000 times. Which would be once a day for 3 years, on average. Possible. Considering that crew probably has 15 odd members, you can imagine that various members would have plastered Germany and the greater Europe surrounds around 1 million times. Or so they say!

That earlier post was written on my last day in Oslo, prior to heading to Kristiansand. Now I'm back in the capital for my final few days. Actually, considering the current time this is been composed, it is my final day, before flying out to Cambridge tomorrow (Wednesday my time). Sitting in The Nighthawk Diner, styled after its namesake. I almost feel like I'm sitting in the picture. To complete the mise en scene they just need to throw on some Tom Waites. Which isn't really connected to that time, but for reference sake, just indulge me. Actually considering that the parody work, Boulevard of Broken Dreams is probably more well known, perhaps my parody memory allows for Toma Waites to fit comfortably in this scene. And, once again, I've lost myself down a rabbit hole.

Some thoughts, then. Really like this area of Oslo, Grünerløkka. Pretty trendy, fine coffee and burglers, nice surrounds. Commuting around Oslo? Well that has been no hassle, despite Hasle been one of the stops on the train line. Have seen so much Canada Goose gear been worn by the cool cats of Oslo, that I can only surmise that the geese population in Canada is in terminal decline. The collective noun for geese is a gaggle, when they are in flight it's called a skein. Methinks a new collective noun for Canada Goose clothed comrades is required. So lets go with; a conspiracy? Today I saw a conspiracy of Canada Goose clothed commuters. Kinda flows. As Bruce Lee said, be like water so lets flow with that. Sorry didn't really make any sense, but hey, you should know me by now and my easily distracted mind.

Havn't seen a scurry squirrels.

Kristiansand was pretty cool. Considering its been something like 25yrs since I was last there, the only really distinct memory I had, which looked similar to it, was the big tree in the front yard. Other parts of the house looked the same, but that was the clearest memory. I was treated to multiple deliscious pesce meals. Damm fine. Never really realised how awesome salmon is for breakfast. Considering breakfast at an actual 'breakfast' time is a slightly foreign concept to me, mostly out of lazziness on my part, may have to alter my life choices going forward. Emma, any salmon rivers in Wellington?!

Food awesome. Have been treated very well over here. Been exposed to some traditional Christmas time treats. Eaten some animals tongue, reindeer, moose and found out when I got home that the piece de resistance will be served tonight. I am crazy excited. Whale. Weather also in Kristiansand was fantastic as well. Somehow the weather gods are still favouring me with some pretty sweet skies. Despite been rather chilly, essentially a total absence of wind and clear sunlight made it more than bearable. Delightful in fact. When Shani and I did a big walk around the forest out behind the Hospital, man you could almost see Denmark. Just in case any one was forgetting what I looked like, this is Shani and I on the highest point above the town. I know, totally need to shave. But in a bit of a dilemma, do I get rid of the travellers beard and start exposing my lower portion of my face to the elements, or, cultivate the follicles, with an ever increasing appearance of having been populated by Birch, and harvest the yeast that may be colonizing said media and start brewing some beer? Hardly Sophie's choice.

large_90_DSC_0658.jpg

The lakes up in the mountains were crystal clear. Like looking in a black mirror. Reflections were perfect, and as no wind was present, just caught every detail. Pretty magical. Also looking at the way lakes freeze over and the fractal ferns that form are spectacular. When there is wind present and its freezes quickly, a frosted, cracked glass look results. Very cool. Could spend hours hanging out and marvelling at different structures, but would most likely freeze my nose off.

Great times catching up with Ingebjørg, Kristina and Knut. Also, has been a very chilled time hanging out again with Shani and Bengt. Will make a serious effort to attend next years Prog Power festival with them, it was ace. Considering the rambunctious niece will still be inhabiting fair Albion, then that would sync up niecely (sic!). We truly do live in a small world these days. Populated by some small minded people, but, that's life.

This feels like it may be a short entry, considering all that has been happening, should probably have been able to flesh it out more. But its been mostly been eating deliscious food and talking with the family. Bit of a time out from the idle musings. Maybe the inclusion of some photos will stimulate some more thoughts and not lead to disappointment about the long wait for the entry and its lack of funny fun times.

Oh, it is a dismal day today, incessant drizzle and cold, so will head back to S and B's. Throw the photos in and post this entry. Then pack. Getting excited to commence my first international au pair placement. Hope I can be of some use, domestically, may need to brush up on my cooking skills. It has been awhile since I made a passable pasta in Stuttgart. We watched a little movie about NWA as well, man, that was awhile ago, killer times!

Better throw in a photo of the little robot monster. What else. A few nice sized murals. And how about another scenery shot from round Kristiansand. Don't be fooled by the weather. It was cold and unseasonably brilliant.

large_DSC_0557__2_.jpglarge_DSC_0552__2_.jpglarge_90_DSC_0550.jpglarge_DSC_0553__2_.jpglarge_DSC_0558.jpglarge_DSC_0645.jpglarge_DSC_0652.jpg

A final passing note. Super excited to order a stack of wax when I get home, can imagine some Nordic sounds from a few bands I have been exposed too, throw in some other Prog pickups and Enter Shikari, will be a sonic symphony of scintillating sounds, creating a cacophony of composition around mi casa.

That's me done I think. Say hi to everyone. Maybe give a loved one a hug. Throw an extra treat to your pets. We're not here for long, so be kind!

Posted by kidd1200 07:44 Archived in Norway Comments (1)

Norway

Northern Exposure

Arrived in Oslo, as the sun was saying goodbye to this side of the world and sliding down the horizons edge. For a second I had forgot I was travelling from Berlin. Iceland already seems so far away, geographically and in terms of adventures since. So too do those Doves I ate in Beijing. They well and truly have been, hopefully, reformed in the infinite matter re- alignment that occurs post existence, and may they not be destined to enter my gut again. Which vaguely leads me onto the first Oslo adventure. A local Prog. outfit was playing at John Dee in the city. So, after a deliscious (may one day check and remember the correct spelling of this blasted word, or continue to lead a one person grammatical resistance army against propa word combinatorial antics) we scooted into town, to said venue, to hear aforementioned band, that I didn't actually specifically mention. I was pretty impressed and remain so, having listened to their soundcloud channel a lot over the last few days. Will add this to the growing Vinyl purchases for when I arrive in sunny Melbourne. Although, it will most likely have to be an online purchase, because I don't quite think there is a reputable musical store that stocks such deliscious sonic treats from such a distant destination as my current locale. Sometimes I think I should just write normal sentences, instead of these overly superfluous, relative conjuctioning pronoun laden, esoteric, interrogatives.

Excuse the digression. The vague link that I was circling around describing occurred as I was blissfully rocking back and forth, awash with electromagnetic wave forms from the harmonic symphony that was been created onstage. The singer, singing in English but doing the audience interludes in Norwegian, uttered perhaps one of my favourite words. Sublimation. Actually 'mental sublimation'. Nice. I love sublimation because it is one of the phase transitions that everyone knows about, but never remembers the name. Its a physical change from a solid to a gas, without a liquid interphase, of a single element. Cool stuff. Also, it got me thinking the other night about my favourite acid. Solid trichloroacetic acid is ace. Because it has a slight sweetness to it and is kinda like sugar. It also burns yours skin and discolours your gloves when you hold it, or spill it on yourself like I sometimes deliberately do because it tickles your skin as it eats away your epidermis like a psychotic mosquito bite. Love it.

Good first night. The weekend was tops as well. We went on a number of walks, got shown around, so now I am armed with a mental map of how and where to go during the week on day adventures. We had some unseansonably delightful weather as well. Cut to Monday, as I'm writing this. It snowed this morning as I was cocooned under my warm blanky. Was quite cold outside, and wet and slushy as it was still a bit rainy. But I went out for a short walk around the apartment complex area. Have yet to gain my snow feet. Slipping and sliding around like a new born giraffe. All legs at the moment. But hopefully I will get a little more confident and will soon be munching on those low hanging leaves. Have been a little bit lazy, because, funnily enough, it's nicer to be warm than cold and wet. But will kick around Oslo and have a list of some good little areas to hunt for visual treasures. Here is a pretty representative photo from the Saturday we went walking down alongside the Akerselva. Actually I may have lightened the shadows a tiny bit to improve the building detail

large_DSC_0435__2_.jpg

Received some pretty rad news about next May, so am stoked about next year. Totally unrelated to anything, just thought I would throw that in there.

Okay, so today I have been boosting around Oslo. Thanks to some tips from my hosts, and a pertinent blog post that I managed to locate, describing all things urban related, have hit upon some delightful street candy. This time I may actually be a little light on the wordy words, let the words on the street speak for themselves. Will lay down some street truths though. Underpasses remain a great place for out of the way expressions of societal distaste. Long may they remain a cities underbelly. Both, in terms of not been to intrusive on the delicate sensibilities of residents and also, remain, hopefully, away from the constabulary, who surely have better crimes to persecute than, at times, wilful childish behaviour.

Wow, so I'm kicking back in a burger joint, with free internet and I kidd you not, another Belle and Sebastian track has just come on the stereo system. Give me a moment to bliss out again Mrs. Fryer, as I did in Cardiff, under strangely similar circumstance. Man, sometimes I feel like I'm in a recurring waking dream. Could actually be the pinnacle of existence. Relieving energy states. Reminds me of my thesis I articulated to myself in India nigh on 10yrs ago. Will be back, better eat my sweet as burglar!! Chock full of jalapenos (hah, actually spelt that with an aitch on my first attempt). Damm fine.

Here is my Indian digression. Having secured a tent from a local mountain chi shop owner on the peaks above the Dalai Lamas residence in exile, Dharamsala, and too be clear a little of the Hindu hash, I spent a night up on the glorious foothills of the Himalayas, by foothills these were 4000 odd feet high. More like kneehills. Shortly after setting up my digs, a local goatherd, child wrapped onto her like a conjoined twin, made her way down the hill and stopped in front of me. We shared some of my biscuits. She sang a haunting melody and about 15 minutes later, her herd slowly picked their way down the craggy mountain scape. One of those moments where I resisted taking a photo, as this was to be my memory alone and I felt that would besmirch the scene in my minds eye.

My contention, after that night, spent reading Desolation Angels, by Kerouac, formed in part due to my proximity to the inception point of Buddhism, was that reincarnation is, for me, not a literal rebirth of the same soul, but rather a recurrence of distinct 'energy moments'. Probably helps if you smoke the hashish at this point. This slight diversion down memory lane was all in the hope of articulation of my elation at this small moment I'm experiencing. Having quickly scanned through some of todays photos, something just caught my eye that I hadn't noticed at the time. This photo, below, has an odd little recurrence and could possibly capture an overarching theme from this journey. It brings together a few things. Damm, music is killer here. Had Tangled Up In Blue, now Easy Like Sunday Morning, almost a hashtag silent tear moment Emma! This photo, on closer inspection, has a poster on the wall of the scene, for Delicatessen. So, links essentially all the conversations Emma and I had over those months, all the pork meals and porcine adventures that ensued. The guy in Eraserhead, I had similar hair at one stage in my life. Anyway, I got a bit excited about that.

large_DSC_0464.jpg

Onto some more photos. Have seen heaps of Alice's work here. You may remember her from Berlin. She is an Italian lady and most of her works feature her friends daughter. Good stuff, they are quite clean over here which is nice. The Berlin crew 1UP also has popped up here a bit as well. Sweet action. I also believe this last piece is from an artist that I saw in Cardiff.

Enjoy the treats for your consumption. Might shuffle off, not this mortal coil, but rather back to Shani and Bengt's. Another sweet day.

large_DSC_0476.jpglarge_90_DSC_0459.jpglarge_90_DSC_0446.jpglarge_90_DSC_0444.jpglarge_DSC_0522.jpglarge_DSC_0517.jpg

Hi mum! You must be getting thrilled as its not long to your adventures. Oh, and some more sweet news, not due back at work till January 4th. Time for a possible pit stop across the Te Tai-o-Rehua if I get a little carried away with flight related detours. Okay, you twisted my arm, I will save the 7 piece Alice series, but here is some more of her work. Another random one and lets finish on some positivity in wake of the horrible news from this week, not just from the baguette capital, it was truly a depressing week for the advancement of humanity.

large_DSC_0536.jpglarge_90_DSC_0524.jpg
large_DSC_0523.jpg
large_DSC_0535.jpg

Posted by kidd1200 10:29 Archived in Norway Comments (2)

Berlin

I'll begin this entry at the end. Not for the first time did I put my camera back in my bag and exclaim, enough. I'm done. Six hours of walking around had started to wear thin on me. My leg was twitching in some, likely, vitamin depleted muscular spasm. Once again I found myself turning a literal corner, and been visually assaulted by a bonanza. Had to dig the camera out again. For me, this piece was the cleanest mural I have seen in Berlin. So it was a fitting end. Also a fitting beginning. It was the last photo in Berlin and I really was done. Hope you like it.

large_DSC_0421.jpg

The comments posted by people are keeping me going. Especially the username comments. You guys are hilarious. And very on point. I dig it a lot. Sorry I havn't mentioned it till now. J, that last one was great! Hah. Feel connected over vast distances and time, in a funny way. As I'm quite an emotional entity, I like this back and forth that is happening. As I have been saying to Mum and Emma, in the absence of any connection/ interaction with Melbourne, makes you realise, as has been mums ongoing thesis for awhile, home is not always a physical structure. It's great when it is, and lets be honest, probably a permenant home gives a degree of security that is essential during certain life stages, but, not nescecarily the be all and end all. See, I spelt it incorrectly again. Home is about emotional connections. Can take all kinds of forms. Alex, think I'm having a flashback to that first night when we had Gin and I fell asleep, sorry, passed out in your garden. Was cool.

Found out it was Kurt Vonnegut's birthday the other day. If you've not read Slaughterhouse Five or Breakfast of Champions, do yourself a favour and read Crying of lot 49. Which is by, perhaps my favourite author. Then go back, to Kurt. Maybe some Bukowski. Hmm, what else have I tried to emulate. Obviously, the Beat Poets. And Hunter. But that's easy. Because the name of this blog is a direct reference to the Rum Diaries. So, unfortunately, just another tattooed Hipster trying to be all street and legit. Except, minus the tattoos. Anyway.

The pin cushion will look a little nuts now. As I fly out to Norway tomorrow to reunite with the Northern Kidds. Super excited. Also have not really had a conversation, in person, for a few weeks longer than food/ drink orders. Hope I have some things to talk about. A lot of back and forth, has been the route travelled thus far. It was making sense when I was cruising with Emma, cause she is a smart cookie and followed a nice loop. Without my antennae, I'm a bit like a leaf in a bubbling brook, just following the currrents, master of nothing, except what i'm carrying. At the moment, the bags overfloweth, as I had to pick up some more treats from a small art collective in Freidrichshain, where I was kicking around most of the day. I retraced my steps from yesterdays adventures, minus the guide and minus the trains. Realised that I will be running out of wall space to display my overseas goodies, what with all the beer coasters I have picked up, postcards purchased and assorted artistic pictures and prints I have snaffled up. Then, possibly, some of my own photos will be given the rarefied honour of a permenant position on the walls of the humble abode. Perhaps I should upgrade to a bigger apartment in, I don't know, how about in New Zealand?

Clearly a combination of crazy amount of photos and lack of conversation has been responsible for the increasing tempo of my posts. I will not be to wordy on this one. Just quite excited to show everyone what I have been seeing. I will save a lot of the back stories about my meonderings to a face-to-face conversation. Actually, I'm sure once you scratch my grey matter surface I wont cease talking until you fall asleep, tea in hand, drifting off to a land of nod filled with bright colourful cityscapes, dark yonders populated by shaggy monsters, lumbering away to their distant caves.

Just a little props to myself. Well and truly versed in cruising around a foreign city, sans map. Berlin is big. Didn't get lost though. Same goes for a lot of other places. Having mention I lost my antennae, the little clip on leaf that was gifted to me in Beijing by a certain someone, have remained on track, with my trusty pair of Cons. They are beyond destroyed, but still can't part with them. Think they deserve to see Melbourne again before retirement, after all we may make it to 20,000 kms travelled in the end.

Show and tell time? Sure, that's why I hope you invited me here after all. First up. Saw a number of recurring works today and yesterday. Robi the dog, Tona, Alias, Alice, Sope and the person who did one of the pieces in Reykjavik, also those little creatures with the eyes kept popping up not sure who it is. Here some of them be.

large_90_DSC_0399.jpglarge_DSC_0372.jpglarge_DSC_0387.jpglarge_90_DSC_0405.jpglarge_90_DSC_0393.jpglarge_90_DSC_0396.jpg

Will finish on a little story. Was walking along, remembering chatting to Emma about Space Invader, I think a French dude, who is internationally prolific. Thought how strange it was that I hadn't seen any of his work yet, in all the cities. They are very hard to spot, though. Having replayed the conversation in my head, walked, I kidd you not (sic), 5 metres, looked up as I have learnt to do from mum and life in general. Bingo. Saw a number of his little guys. Then another 10m and hallo! Ausfahrt, or maybe Einfahrt. Another piece. Really these pieces are hard to spot. Did my little excited dance. Succumbed to the beat. Here you go.

large_DSC_0406.jpglarge_90_DSC_0410.jpg

Could actually keep talking, because havn't even mentioned the East Side Gallery, may have to eat my words on my last ponderings on the Wall and how it's remembered. Because that kind off, but not really destroys part of my contention. So, one final piece I really like. For cereal, took over 100 photos of individual pieces in Berlin.

large_90_DSC_0389.jpg

Posted by kidd1200 08:39 Archived in Germany Comments (2)

Berlin

Urban Diatribes


View Europe 2015 on kidd1200's travel map.

Well this stop takes the approximate distance covered to over 15,000km. That be some distance. If I was a car I would be definitely due for a grease and oil change. Maybe inflate my tires a bit. Guess Berlin did just that. Pumped my spirits up again. I mean, I saw the Northen Lights, on my very first night in Iceland. In Reykjavik, even in the city with light pollution diminishing the effect. Crazy.

Stupid.

I'm in love. With the sky.

Because as I found out, even people who went on 'Northern Lights Tours' that night, out on the boat, didn't get to see it. I'm one lucky cat. As mum said, even people who have been here multiple times missed out. That be crazy y'all. It was evidently a very strong solar activity night, because out of a score of 9, it was at an 8 that night. Have no idea what scale they would be using. Naplan scores? Probably not. Anyway, I feel blessed by the gods/ spirits/ big people in the sky that control the levers that meterologically influence our daily grind. But, what about Berlin. After all that's where I started this post. Well, it's a start to be sure. Having departed Reykjavik at that hour I didn't think existed, 6AM, man I left the Biscuit Factory at 3AM. What?! I was promptly asleep on the plane once it finally took off. See what I did there. Jumped back to talking about Reykjavik instead of Berlin.

Now, having arrived, in aforementioned city, and not been able to check in till 3pm, and having time travelled 1 hr ahead, I did a loop of the block so would no whichever direction I approached the hostel from would look vaguely familiar. Totally seasoned. Got all the tricks. Scooted out straight down the main street in search of urban delights after that. First port of call was the river. Generally a good place to start for graffiti. Was underwhelming. But, seeing some construction areas under the train line, another failsafe, I headed around. Just following the wind. Eventually started to open up. First impressions of the streetscape. Totally different to my previous haunt. Definitely more of the 'by the people, about the people, for the people' if you get my drift. A bit of graffiti origins. Actually, more of a giant f@#$ you to the establishment. Interestingly, all of the really good pieces are totally fenced in by construction sites, like a massive exclusion zone. Appears I may have hit the areas undergoing gentrification. Or, destruction of the character that made these places come alive again. Enough of my political/ social diatribe. Focus.

Actually, I mean I saw a famous Banksy piece, that was totally inacessable even with my sweet as zoom lense. Just could not find a place where I could nail the shot. A few words I like to spell incorrectly; deliscious, nesecarily, beg your parsnips! Sorry, got distracted again. Point is, there seems, just on day one of me exploring, this kind of covering up of Berlin/ societal history. I even, literally, stumbled upon an old section of the Wall. Not the tourist Checkpoint Charlie jazz, which is not near any remaining wall, but some area that was all overgrown with grass. No one around. Was weird. It was all walled off, ironically. Behind some Police joint. Almost got arrested cause I was taking all these photos, inadvertantly looked like I was staking the joint out. Don't worry, just me panicking. There was no constabulary-Daniel interaction.

It's now day two. Things may get a little unhinged. But that is my want, and as i'm the occaisional master of my own insignificant existence, perchance indulge me. Actually, not asking for permission. As stated preiviously at some stage, this endeavour will increasingly become more of an insight to my state, perhaps a deteriation of an otherwise 'aight mind. Or mabes, this is what we all go through and our persona that is projected into the world comes across more stable. As I experience stateless existence. Kind of. Probably will wander a bit. As I was stuffing my face with diner, I had a de ja vue moment, except I knew it wasn't real because, according to my feeling, I wasn't actually eating pizza when I 'lived this moment' before, which then caused another de ja vue, because that was origionally what I thought on my first 'living' of that moment. Was a double de ja vue. Got seriously confused.

Mr's Fryer, your use of the word stalk is fitting, it's more or less what I did to Emma throughout Europe. Observing it from a distance would probably lead to all kinds of assumptions, but I'm no Olaf. Despite my use of masking tape once. I'll let Emma, maybe, tell that story. I'll clarify that, the masking tape and my use of it occurred before I left Australia! Funny, I kind of feel like I know you, what happens after chilling and talking crap non stop for a few months, you feel like you know have known someone for ages. So, appreciate the comments, hope you get a few more chuckles.

Having taken your daughters advice, I embarked on a free 'alternative' tour of Berlin. The use of free is a slight misnomer as these dudes run off the generosity of fully cashed up tourists like myself. Actually, considering most are on a budget and there was only 3 of us today, very small group, I, in the luxurious position of actually making money on this trip, tipped a fair bit. But Max was totally on point all day. How weird and lucky to be able to cruise around Europe, to some pretty expensive places and still be saving cash. I mean my actual savings are at the same level when I left. Despite all the crap I have bought myself. Now I feel guilty. Looks like the young niece may be getting additional treats. Probably should spread the love a bit broader. All right. If anyone wants to meet me tomorrow, I'll shout you a coffee.

Having crapped on a bout my initial views of Berlin, turns out I may have been a little quick on the draw. I saw so much street art/ graffiti today its unbelievable. Interestingly, Max's general overarching theme as he took us through some up and coming neighburhoods was about gentrification and the negative aspects that this has on a local community. I learnt a stack. Consolidated my own beliefs and feelings on the corporate greed/ property speculation monster that priced me out of Brunswickedest and turned it into a comodified locale. Lets be clear. I am a massive hypocrite in this situation. I mean I stopped at Starbucks and bought the cheapest espresso so I could use the free WiFi cause it took me 1 1/2 hours to find the meeting point. Lucky I busted out early, anticipating some such silliness would arise.

Just re read the entire entry from yesterday. Boom. I was actually completely on the money. That first impression was, as most guts feelings, on point. So the building I saw the 'Banksy', after talking with Max we're not sure if its a legit piece or a copy, used to be a artist squat. About a year ago it was reclaimed by the landowners, evicting everyone out and turning it over to be developed. This is a recurring theme in Berlin and a global phenomenon. Again, the whole 'by the people for the people, about the people' vibe I got was on point. An example.

large_DSC_0333.jpg

Incidently, the other paste is from SOPE, heaps of these pastes are all over the place. Always characters of mushrooms and bunnys. Reason why pastes are prolific in Berlin, its quicker to throw up, and is only considered as 'littering' not vandalism, as opposed to stencils of straight graffiti/ tagging. So, legislation leads to adaptation. Also is relevant in the 'war on drugs' and most attempts at legislating your way out of a 'problem' Sorry, getting a little social agenda anti system vibe seeping out. Look, this kind of art is not for everyone and can look ugly as sin. I completely agree. Have found myself advocating for tagging at work (not actl tagging of our expensive automated analysers, although I like to think every time I sign a piece of work, DK is a little tag in history, considering it has to be kept for 5 yrs also a legacy!), not that I'm a fan, but I think you have to show a modicum of consistency. As I said, there is truth in ugliness. Wow, I must be drunk, just wowed myself with my insight.

Mum, this leads me to a piece you will really dig. They are scattered throughout Berlin, by an artist called Yoga, or maybe Yogi? They are little corkscrew figures in various yoga positions, the overarching point is to remind people to look up! Because they are tiny, so inconspicuous. Its a modern day stop and smell the roses mentality. I rekon you should try and do some free tours at the cities you go to. Its great hearing passionate views from locals, and you get great insights. I think this group runs other 'alternative' tours in other cities.

DSC_0324.jpg

Cath, reminds me, your comment reminded me, when I was flying into Berlin, once we penetrated the low cloud, the first sight I had was of trees. Now Iceland is a barren place. Most of the trees have been cleared by the early settlements. That was a lot of reminders. The sheep finished the task on the native wildflowers. So no, there is a absence of my favourite fine foliaged fellows, the Birch. May they endure, evermore, in the great sparse expanse of Siberia. Crazy, I spent 3 odd weeks travelling from Beijing to SPB. It's a little crazy. And I had an off the charts time with my NZ crew. Dan, Sarah and Emma. Man. Was sweet.

Some photos. A few big name artists I saw today, and in other places if you have a memory and an eye. Blu, London Police, Os Geomos. These are some of the the big international names. Blu does a lot of stop motion video with his pieces, so check that out if you bored or its you first day back at work and your wearing corporate gear, watching Arrow and just been a general menace.

large_90_DSC_0357.jpglarge_DSC_0329.jpglarge_DSC_0340.jpglarge_DSC_0287.jpglarge_DSC_0274.jpglarge_90_DSC_0268.jpglarge_90_DSC_0281.jpglarge_90_DSC_0327.jpg

Let me end, on what I think is my best photo, ever taken, ever. Mum, this reminds me of your black and white self portrait that you took all those moons ago. That has stuck with me because I think its off the charts. Well, this is my modern take on a self portrait in a mirror. Updated, in colour. If you search for the translation of the word yourself, you'll get another layer of awesomeness that I didn't realise at the time. Very few times in my life do I feel proud of an actual achievement. This is one of those times.

large_DSC_0222__2_.jpg

Not sure if its obvious, but I may be missing talking gibberish to Emma.

Posted by kidd1200 10:06 Archived in Germany Comments (2)

Reykjavik

On the Road, Again


View Europe 2015 on kidd1200's travel map.

Driving along today I thought of many ways to begin this next instalment of the ongoing pursuits of an at times reluctant traveller. Should I start at The beginning, A beginning, The end, or simply create a preamble related to my dilemma as to where to start. It would seem that the latter option was the one that felt the most illogical, or simply made the most sense at the time I was driving along into the kind of rain storm that batters your wheels, and makes you realise you should stop day dreaming about how to begin a diatribe that will have more the one beginning anyway, as unfamiliar roads have a habit of not following a dead straight course. So without further ado, let me begin. Ahem.

Now it has been awhile since I have been in the drivers seat of anything more technical than an automatic shaver, so to step up to a manual car was a bit of a stretch. My last set of actual wheels that I owned, was my sweet as '74 Leyland Mini Clubman. Man, that was some good times. I like to think I have a fair degree of experience when it comes to driving manual, I mean I tore that car around roundabouts like Mix Master Mike cuts those sweet beats in Ill Communication. I have also forfeited any right to lecture any youngsters in the future, as to driving responsibly, because, not something my family would be happy to hear, I have done some really really stupid s-h-I-t both before and after getting into a car. With passengers. Yeah. Glad we all made it home. That said, I'm alluding to the fact that I am not a complete idiot now, when it comes to operating a car. Except when it is all back to front. Driving a stickshift with your right hand is like brushing your teeth with your left foot. I mean, it's just weird. All kinds of uncomfortable. That feeling you have when you've buttoned up one of your shirts, blue of course, out of sequence and not realised all day exactly what you'd done wrong, was the feeling I had.

But driving along that road, mind wandering away on all kinds of tangents was crazy fun. The views. Seriously I think I'm running out of ways to describe the sights. I'm sure those NZ residents who go away on weekend adventures would have a million sights that blew their mind. (Hi Mrs Emma!) When it has been raining and your cruising through verdant green pastures, with some kind of mountain range lurking, shrouded in a veil of cloud, teasingly revealing a shimmer of an outline of its sweet low curves, raising and disapering up into the hem line of mist that clings to its peaks. When it is all grey in the sky, but somehow, the sun manages to stretch apart the clouds, like cotton wool, to pear down in the valley below and say, 'wassup?'. When some Outkast is playing on 957FM Icelandic Pop, the beat just takes over. All of a sudden, the landscape is illuminated. Those greens manage to fluoresce, the black soil takes on a rich oiliness, like its been poured through the valley, the clouds reveal their intricate lace texture and radiate the rays piercing through. It explodes. Briefly. You smile, then realise you've veered off the road a little cause your a 'dick'.

Well that was what my GPS unit said to me, because after spending 15min learning to operate it, I changed its setting to 'Emma from NZ'. Just for the company on the drive. It/she was a little sassy, but kept me on pretty much the only road that runs around Iceland. Oh, I went to the south coast by the way, so again you can play along at home. It may take me 34mins to correctly write the places down. Easy, strewth, give me a minute to sort my self out. A lot is happening at the moment. BRB!

Anyways, as I was saying earlier before I got distracted, I rolled out to the rental joint at the ungodly hour of 9AM. On a Sunday. it's one of those times that you forget actually exist. Like 3AM Monday. Or in my case, between 4AM-7AM every single day. I know a few people from Bacchus Marsh who insist that this is an actual working time, but I don't believe their lies. Once I had my car, booted up 'Emma', checked my mirrors to ensure that I looked good and found the heater, I had to turn it on. Both the heater and the car. Bloody thing wouldn't start without the clutch engaged. What?! My other car, which was actually mums but she very kindly permenantly lent me, which I eventually got graffiited, would start when you just turned the key. So I was confused. I drove my wheels down to the dock area and because it was early did a few laps around, driving on the right and sorting out the gears. Felt like a knob. Actually, this is embarrising, I still don't know where the fuel cap release is, so I never re filled the tank. I was ready to drive to the south coast, eventually.

The destination I set out for was Eyjafjallajökull. Yeah I know, I can't pronounce it either. One of those time when the journey is better than the destination.

I had just written about another two paragraphs and the internet dropped out. So I'll try and re create the magic. Which is hard because pulsating beats are currently been sonically injected through my body at the moment. Not in a comfortable way either. I actually feels sick in my gulliver. So bear with me, sorry if it is not as funny as last effort. But you probably can't tell. The drive was full of those small moments, like when I crested a hill, with a row of mountains to my left like upturned saucers, the valley spreading out in front, just as a flock of Artic Terns wheeled in front of the car, banked and exposed their bellies to the sun which had peaked out from behind the grey curtain, illuminating the scene ahead. Even the surly, shaggy sheep lifted their sullen gaze and cracked a wry grin before going back to talking about grass related antics. And what Líknví would do to Mjǫðvitnir when he went to the other side of the paddock to talk to Earl the horse. In a nutshell the drive was epic. Like I was driving through a fairy tale.

I had written a lot about the drive, but maybe it wasn't meant to be. Them's the breaks sometimes. Checked out Gljufrabul Waterfalls as well. This place was cool. This will have to wait for an in person conversation, because, I can't be stuffed. Did want to mention that on my various urban adventures I did come across a couple of tagging/ graffiti dudes called the Ugly Brothers. One of whom is called OST or UST and the other; KIDD. I know, crazy. My nickname writ large on the concrete jungle. It's time for some shoutouts.

James, Mr Bungle is pretty dark, but I can top that. Fantomas, Mike Pattons other (one of many) bands released a vinyl that has these dark photos of surgery where all you can see is the open operation and the surgeons hands and blood. Everything else is black. The music is just a series of pulsating heart beats with guttural human voicebox noise occaisionally punctuating the pulse. Heavy. Really looking forward to Cambridge times. Miss my little J and can't wait to give her Christmas treats. Also, mum, your roasts were always pretty special, so happy to partake is some oven overtures in December. Dad, the Phallogical Museum does look a little odd, did walk past it the other day. Humans are an odd bunch.

Mrs Fryer, hope your doing well!

So, now some of the obligatory photographs. What shall it be? More of the murals. Which reminds me. Urban Nation, which is a Berlin based initiative was responsible for organizing some of the larger murals as part of Airwaves around town. But let me assure you, this place is second to none in terms of graffiti, coffee, tattoo and hairdresser ratio to any place I have been to so far. I covered a lot of ground and saw many pieces that have been around for awhile but out of the way and not in your usual tourist area. I'm a bit chuffed about that, just between you and me. Aight, it's been long enough. Next stop Berlin, before I head out to reunite with the Norge Family. Can't wait!

large_DSC_0176.jpglarge_DSC_0175.jpglarge_90_DSC_0160.jpglarge_DSC_0142.jpglarge_DSC_0135.jpglarge_1DE85DC1BD41C0F06B00FEE53EE1028D.jpglarge_90_1DE3FAA1B866F6D060E4F3A40A4E342C.jpglarge_DSC_0115.jpg

Posted by kidd1200 15:16 Archived in Iceland Comments (3)

(Entries 6 - 10 of 24) « Page 1 [2] 3 4 5 »