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Post details: Grieg to the Rescue

Grieg to the Rescue

Not only is randomness a great source of beauty, but sometimes it can moonlight as a pretty sophisticated GPS, too. If you don't believe it, here is what happened on our trip to Bergen, Norway.

We spent a lot of time driving around that day, so we arrived in Bergen around 11pm. Having nonchalantly forgone making reservations as well as buying a good street map, we headed straight for the airport, where we expected hotels to be easier to find and more amenable to last minute price negotiations. Neither quite worked; our maneuvering through Bergen, including going back and forth on a toll road, resembled a run of a headless chicken, and the anticipated deep discounts at the hotels turned out to be a tad shallower than Paris Hilton's knowledge of Viking history.

After a few haggling fiascos, we resigned our search and started to look for a place to park and sleep in the car. It was midnight, we were somewhere in the greater airport area and soon we happened upon a cozy construction site, where we parked next to a homey looking bulldozer. The deciduous trees surrounding the site were doing a pretty good job shielding us from the prying eyes of police cars, but on a second thought we figured that being woken early in the morning by the din of construction workers wasn't exactly our idea of "car sweet car", so we hit the road again.

Finding a decent place to car camp in a dark and strange city at 1 am is lottery at best. We drove randomly through countless intersections, took side roads at will, we entered some condo complex, strayed in it, found a different way out, pursued well lit streets, pursued ill lit streets, completely lost any sense of where we were, or whether we were still in Bergen at all, and at about 2 am we got so tired that we decided to just crash wherever we were even if it was to be on the front lawn of the Headquarters of the Norwegian Parking Enforcement Agency. But then and there - just as we abandoned all hope - and after an odyssey that would soften the heart of a Correctional Treatment Specialist - the magical GPS of a random drive lead us to a parking lot of what seemed to be a decent looking hotel.

It was Edvard Grieg's Quality Inn, and for a price we were willing to stomach we got our best accommodations in Norway that night. The man whose music prompted this trip took mercy, and offered a hotel bearing his name to two weary travelers.


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