Norsk Morganklubb Berte Mog

This time, I will not share a hiking experience with you but something I never had dreamed before in my life to do – a Woman’s Morgan Rally in Norway! It started with planning of the  “Art and Constellation”  workshop in Oslo. When we fixed the date, my Norwegian friend Aud Marit asked me if I would like to participate in a woman’s Morgan Rally after the workshop. Why not? I had never heard of a Morgan before. The experience – especially in the company of Norwegian women – sounded intriguing.

Aud Marit picked me up from the airport with their brand new Tesla.  I never traveled in such a futuristic car, where the rear side doors lift like wings and you basically float on the street.



But the experience with the Morgan was different. The sound of the motor, the movement over uneven terrain and feeling the speed by sitting deep in the car with the wind touching the face, was something that made everyone feel more alive.







Twenty four Morgans and 47 women met north of Oslo to drive to our first stop ,”Eidsvold”,  where the Norwegian Constitution was created and signed in 1814. Although Norway was ruled by the Swedes, they accepted the Constitution. Only the ministry of foreign affairs stayed in Swedish hands with the Swedish king as the ruler over Norway. The tour guide told stories about independent women and servants. Aud Marit translated some of it for me.





Constitution House Eidsvoll

The next stop was at Løten, a brewery for aquavit with 96 % alcohol. A very humerous guide gave the tour in the form of a theater play. He performed six different roles, starting with a rough farmer bringing a sack of potatoes to the brewery.  Although I did not understand what he was saying, his acting was so good that I could follow the meaning and it made me smile.





We stayed overnight at Opaker Gard, a farm owned  by the same family for seven generations. We were welcomed with a “Hândbrekkskobler”, a glass of champagne mixed with a bit of berry juice.  The custom of drinking at the end of the day goes back to boating after tossing the anchor when the day’s work was finished.











The next day we drove to Elverum ( elv= river) where the Norwegian king escaped the German invasion in 1940 and refused to abdicate. From here, he was fleeing to England. In Elverum, we also saw typical Norwegian block houses with roofs covered with grass, moss and little shrubs.




Aud Marit and I decided to skip the wine tasting and instead drove to Hamar.  Hamar is an historical site connected with Christianity. In 1030, the Viking king Olav forcefully introduced Christianity. A cathedral with a bishop’s palace was built in the 13th century. The cathedral was abandoned and demolished with the arrival of Protestantism  and the Swedish army. Now the ruins of the church are covered by a huge glass dome creating a gorgeous space for weddings and concerts.





Basin for baptisms


Guide in traditional Norwegian clothing



Dark clouds covered the sky when we drove back to the farm. Soon it started to rain. The drops hammered on the red metal and clouded our windshields. However, we did not get wet. The wind blew the raindrops over our heads.  It was an amazing experience to drive in an open car in the rain and not get wet! After a two hour car ride, we arrived back at the farm and were still able to participate in the wine tasting. The Norwegians know how good wine tastes. We had excellent wines from all over the world.



On Sunday, we visited the emerald mine “Smaragdgruvene” in Byrudgård (byrud means forest clearing). Norway is a country covered with forests and lakes. The emerald mine is located at the shore of the biggest lake in Norway, lake Mjøsa.  For a small entrance fee, many people come to the shore to look for emeralds. I could not find one, but a woman beside me digging into the gravel, gave me a tiny one to take home.





Emerald hunters on the way to the shore




After coming back to Oslo with the Morgan, Aud Marit and her husband, Calle, showed me the Vikingmuseum with the Viking ship “Gokstadskipet”  (800 AD) and several other boats.








A meditating Viking – very strange decoration on a bucket


At the end of the day, we witnessed the homecoming of the”Maud”, a ship built for the arctic explorer Roald Amundsen for his second expedition to explore the Northwest Passage. It took 100 years for the ship to come back to Norway.


Although my whole trip lasted only five days, I had a feeling that I got a glimpse into the Norwegian soul.  Aud Marit shared not only many stories about the life of the people in Norway, but I also got to learn about Norwegian history, culture and nature. I am looking forward to going back.


View from the hill down to Oslo

Born and raised in a village along the Danube in Austria, Traude Wild soon ventured out into the world. After a two-year program for tourism in Klesheim/Salzburg, she spent nearly a year in South Africa and Namibia. By returning back to Austria, she acquired a Master of Economics at the University of Vienna. After moving to the United States with her four children, she studied Art History at Arizona State University and stayed in the United States for fourteen years. Here, she was teaching Art History in several Universities like Webster University and University of Missouri-St. Louis. Now, she lives partially in Arizona and Vienna and works together with her husband for the University of South-Carolina, Moore School of business as Adjunct Professor organising and leading Study tours in Central Europe. She also teaches at the Sigmund Freud University in Vienna. Since 1999, she is practicing Zen meditation in the lineage of Katagiri Roshi. She loves to hike and to write and is a student of Natalie Goldberg. During her often many weeks long hikes she brings her awareness into the Here and Now, describing her experiences in an authentic way. She loves to walk pilgrimages. The longest hike so far was the 1,400 km long 88 Temple pilgrimage in Shikoku, Japan in 2016.

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