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 Post subject: June 26 Voss and the GPS
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2005 9:11 pm
Posts: 415
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
We picked the wrong time to make our way to Voss: the week of the annual Extreme Sport Festival. We got the last spot in the campground, which is perfectly located for a visit to this town: in a park on the lake, only three blocks from the city center. But even empty it would have been a tight fit for us, as the spaces are short and close together. This week, every speck of grass had a tent on it and every tent came with a car with a kayak or some other piece of equipment attached. Some neighbors moved a car so David had a better shot at backing into our space. The place was full of young athletes and their friends. A huge festival stage and tent had been erected about a block away, so we knew we were in for a late night since the party started at 9:30 pm. But . . . location, location, location: any other campsite was miles away and all the parking spots in town were taken.

The weather was perfect, so we got our bikes out, found the Folk School that our son-in-law had attended some years ago, and then took the cable car to the top of the mountain. From there we watched paragliders running down the mountain and hurtling themselves into space. The view from the top was beautiful on this clear, sunny day, and in the evening a sky-diving show brought a crowd to the park.
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We survived the late night with the help of earplugs. Then we headed for Bergen, eager (!) to see what new driving adventure the day would bring. We had taken a good look at the map and decided against (what one map said was) a yellow road with scores of tunnels and instead chose (what another map said was) a red road that took a slightly longer route.

The GPS disagreed. “Make a U-turn,” it said. Usually when it tells us this, it adapts to reality after a few miles, mutters “Oh, all right,” and sulkily maps out the course we had decided on. This time, though, was different: after 5 miles of travel, the device was still insisting that we turn around...and then 10 miles.15….Worse, after those first 15 miles, we took a right turn and the road got really narrow and winding. David put up with this for 7 miles, meeting way too much traffic. “U-turn,” insisted the GPS; and “I told you so, but would you listen?” We finally conceded, turned around and made our way back through the 7 miles, including coming to a complete standstill once while a truck scraped by as we scraped our awning support on the stone ledge on the right. We made it back to Voss and went the other way--the GPS sniggering quietly to itself, but making sure we heard--on a road with a yellow line down the middle and through many tunnels.

(Truth be told, we don’t actually listen to the GPS; we muted its annoying voice years ago. But its screen still prints its messages to us, and “U-turn” is one it’s particularly fond of.)

We stopped on the way at a very handy dump station that we could use with ease. This one appeared to be sponsored by the city.
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The GPS brought us to an ugly camping place in Bergen, right on the water in an industrial area. Small and medium sized motorhomes are packed in here, and the place is full. Its sole virtue is that it is a very easy 30-minute walk over the bridge to the old city center. And since we bought the Bergen Card today, it will be a five minute bus ride to the city center for us. Location, location, location.

(We do wonder just a little what horrors awaited us on that road we abandoned.)

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