Day 3 - Sat 24 June 2006
Alarm clock goes off at 06:30, but I stay in bed until 07:00, feeling rather sleepy, no sign of insomnia here! No one on the front desk, so I just use the key drop, and walk down to the Grand Hotel to pick up the Flybuss.
The coach arrived spot on time, with no other passengers! 10 minutes later it dropped me at the airport. My flight wasn't being shown above any check in desk, so I asked the lady behind the "excess baggage" counter what should I do. She tried to find the SAS booking reference on the print out I had from Expedia, but with no luck. She then entered my name in the computer, and produced me a boarding card. Result - I'd managed to skip the queue at check-in!
The flight was short, only 35 mins and thankfully un-remarkable. My fourth flight in three days! Walked straight out of the airport onto a local bus, and 20Kr got be into the town centre (again, I was the only passenger). The driver (Thomas) misunderstood me and thought I said "training" rather than "train station" so he was telling me where I could find a Gym. After that was sorted out all was well! Thomas made a bit of a laugh when I told him that I had 12 hours in Bodø. I realised later that Thomas is a wise man.
A walk up to the railway station proved the following:
Let's hope that my Internet print out is enough to get me on board! After that it was back down town to find the tourist info place. They supplied info about the aircraft museum and another of Norway's pointless tours to occupy tourists.
Anyway, took the local bus to the Aircraft Museum, the highlight has to be the air traffic control on the top of the museum. It overlooks the real airport, so you can pretend to bring the aircraft into land. Then it was onto the museum proper.
There's a good display of aircraft, and they even have a U2 spy plane, it seems that Bodo was Garry Powers ultimate destination, but the Russians spoiled that plan! It wasn't until I was getting ready to leave (and do the pointless island tour) that I noticed that I'd only done one wing (did I mention the building is in the shape of a propeller?) of the museum, and there was another half to do! I decided to walk back into town, and if there was enough time come back later.
When I got to the ferry terminal I had a change of heart, it wasn't obvious which ferry to get, and the wind had picked up. The thought of paying 30 quid to get sea sick and see more of the Norwegian shoreline really didn't appeal, So I got the bus back to the air museum and did the other half. A cup of tea in the cafe, and a look around the shopping centre next door brings me to 4pm. Five hours before the train leaves. Another walk into town (boy, has it got colder now), what little life there was seems to have died, the only place open was a Burger King.
17:30 and I find myself at the railway station. I'm amazed to find that I'm not the only person waiting for the train. There are ten people, including the accordion player from outside the downtown shopping centre!
On the train now, I checked in at the Restaurant Car, and got my little plastic key that gains me entry to my sleeping car, it's a standard one up one down arrangement, and since I was given both keys I assume I'm on my own. It's raining - again!
I've done LOADS of train journeys, and a fair number have been sleepers, you'd think I'd have it beaten out of me by now, but I'm still excited to be travelling over night on a train in a bed! I'll probably be sick of it by tomorrow, but now, now I'm excited!
There's next to nobody else on this sleeper, I thought this would be the high season..