Archive for the ‘vacation’ Category

Back from Berlin

01.11.2012 12:29

Hi, everybody! I’m finally back from Berlin, and I’m barely getting settled in to normal life again. I hope those who live on the east coast of USA are safe and have started to recover from hurricane Sandy. I’ve been watching the news here from Norway, and it’s a crazy sight to see.

I’ve previously detailed what I did on my vacations from day to day (and I’m still kinda stuck in the middle of my vacation summary from last year’s trip to New York – I hope I’ll get it posted one of these days), but I think it would be enough to just point out a few of the highlights.

First of all, all of my flights went smoothly, which was pretty nice. My flight from Copenhagen to Ålesund (the last leg of my journey back home) was delayed about 15 minutes (which I was notified of in advance), but that didn’t affect anything, since I didn’t have to catch anything after that. When I got home, I heard about the chaos at Gardermoen (Oslo airport), and I was grateful that I was on a direct flight from Copenhagen to Ålesund, and avoided that chaos completely.

Second, I tried something new in Berlin: I went on a sightseeing trip on bike! I wasn’t too sure about it at first, given that I’m still rather overweight, and I haven’t ridden an bike in over 10 years, but it came out pretty nicely, I think. I went on the All-In-One City Tour from Fat Tire Bike Tours, just to get a look at, well, almost everything in Berlin. Our tour guide Kate had a special (and fun) way of telling the history about the sights of Berlin as we stopped in front of them, and had some fun anecdotes spread throughout. At the end of the trip, when it was time to pay for the tour, I almost felt a little bad for using my discount from my Berlin WelcomeCard – the tour was definitely worth the money. Next time I go to Berlin, and have time for a sightseeing trip, I’m definitely going with these guys again (and taking one of their other tours – hopefully with Kate again).

I also went for a balloon ride on a captive balloon called the HiFlyer. That was an amazing view from 150 meters up (or 450 feet for those of you who are stuck in the imperial system), and I recommend everyone to do this at least once in their lives.

It was nice to see the view from Fernsehturm (the TV tower) and Panoramapunkt at Potsdamer Platz as well, but I must say the balloon has a slightly better view of the city.

I managed to fit in a trip to the Madame Tussauds museum in Berlin, too. It was a tiny bit smaller than the one I went to in New York, but absolutely worth the trip.

And last, but not least, the main reason for my trip to Berlin: the Blue Man Group fan event in Berlin. First of all, the weather during the fan event weekend was amazing – around 18-20 degrees C and sunny (or roughly 64-68 degrees F for your other guys). Second, it was fun to get a backstage tour (with visits to the storage room, practice room, prop kitchen, one of the band lofts), and be around for the soundcheck before heading out to Tony Roma’s next door for our dinner together. After dinner, it was time for the show, along with a private meet-and-greet for us fans. We also headed out to a local bar to grab a beer (or something) and chat together for an hour or two. The next day, it was time for our little Catch & Throw contest, where we would catch balls in our mouth, just like the Blue Man does in the show. The 4 winners (with the highest scores) would get to do their own spin art with actual official paint balls from Blue Man Group. (If you’ve seen the show, you may know what “spin art” is.) I came last with 3 catches out of 20 throws, but at least I had fun participating. Afterwards, it was time to head back into the theater’s private lobby for a little Q&A session, along with a raffle. I didn’t win anything here, either, but it was fun nonetheless.

In my two weeks in Berlin, I managed to catch 7 shows in all, bringing my total number of Blue Man Group shows up to 27 (Copenhagen, Las Vegas, Orlando, Stockholm, New York, and now, Berlin).

And now that I’ve seen most of Berlin, for next year’s fan event in Berlin, I think I’ll make do with just an extended weekend (using Friday and Monday as travel days). That is, unless someone wants me to catch some specific sight or event while I’m already in Berlin (if that’s the case, I might extend the trip up to a full week).

Although the weather for the fan event weekend was amazing, it got colder in the week that followed, with night frost in the last few days of my stay. Actually, comparing Berlin on the day before I left with yesterday’s walk-around in Ålesund, it was actually slightly warmer here in Ålesund in the middle of the day. Weather changes quickly, huh?

Anyway, that’s it from me for now. I hope you had a safe and fun Halloween last night.

Have a safe vacation, everybody!

20.06.2012 15:31

It’s nearing the time when people go on vacation. I originally planned to finish an extensive article with my own travel advice, but considering how close it is to when most people go on vacation (July and August are some of the most popular vacation months), some of my safety tips and preparations will come too late for most of you. Especially when I do have a list of things that should probably be done at least two months before departure. Safe to say, I’ll just finish writing the article (both in English and Norwegian, mind you), let it sit in my drafts folder until next year, and then do some last-minute updates on it before publishing it in, say, March or April 2013.

In the meantime, I did find an article with most of my safety tips for travelers in a list called Before you Go. The article is mainly targeted at backpackers, but most of the suggestions apply to travelers in general.

In addition to the tips listed in that article, I can give some key points from my own article:

  • Get a document folder in plastic or cardboard where you keep all travel documents and confirmations while on the go.
  • Make copies of your passport, travel insurance and credit card numbers (along with phone numbers to cancel these credit cards); carry one copy with you in your document folder, and leave another copy at home, in case something should happen.
  • Check coverage maps and roaming charges for your mobile phone before you go; consider getting a pre-paid SIM card or phone while abroad if you plan on a longer stay or plan to make a lot of calls.
  • Keep the software on your tablet (iPad, Galaxy Tab, etc) or laptop – whichever you choose to travel with – up to date, and make backups before you go.
  • Don’t leave your electronic equipment where it might get stolen; make use of the room/hotel safe or other lockable storage when your equipment is not in use.
  • Make a small “route planner” to maximize time spent on attractions and museums, but don’t over-plan things (you’re supposed to enjoy your vacation, after all), and include plenty of breaks and cafe/restaurant visits in your plan.
  • Before you go, pre-check average taxi fares and safe taxi companies to use, and what public transportation is available.

I do have more advice on my list, but these are among the more important ones. I plan to follow my own advice when I go on vacation later this year, and I hope you will, too.

Have a safe trip!

I’m going to New York!

03.06.2011 16:17

When I checked my account this morning, the funds I was looking for had finally arrived.

I ordered travel insurance, booked the flights and hotel to New York, confirmed my attendance to the fan meeting, and even booked additional flights, hotel and tickets for a detour to Winnipeg to catch two Blue Man Group shows on their North American tour, which has their absolute latest material. The stop in Winnipeg was their only tour stop within a two-week radius of the fan meet in late July, and I really wanted to experience it.

So there you have it. In case someone wants to hook up, I arrive in New York on the evening of July 16, then hop on the early morning flight the next day for Winnipeg (not a direct flight, though) to catch the 1 PM show (and the one at 8 PM), return to New York on July 18, and fly out on my way home on August 1. And, there’s the fan meet on July 30. To sum it up: Winnipeg on July 17, New York from July 18 to August 1.

Assuming, of course, that there are no problems when crossing the border (and I don’t expect there will be any problems – it’s just that little insubstanciated fear that lives inside me).

Now I really have something great to look forward to!

See you around!

I’d like to go to New York….

14.04.2011 15:04

About two months ago, a date was set for the 20th anniversary fan meet for Blue Man Group in New York. That’s right, Blue Man Group has had their show in New York for 20 years now, and the arrangers are hoping to fill the entire theater on the 30th of July this year. I hope to become one of them.

My vacation plans in recent years have revolved around getting to see Blue Man Group in one form or another. In 2008, I went to Copenhagen, Denmark, for a stop on their How To Be A Megastar international tour, which is more of a concert experience. In 2009, I went to Las Vegas and Orlando to see their theatrical show for the very first time, and to experience the Orlando fan meet that year. I ended up seeing three shows in Las Vegas and two shows in Orlando. In 2010, last year, I went to Stockholm, Sweden, for their more or less travelling show (lasting two months in Stockholm), and managed to catch 7 shows during that week’s stay (meaning, all of that week’s shows). It would have been 8 shows if the Wednesday show hadn’t been cancelled (due to low sales, and no room for advertising due to the Swedish elections).

But, due to my current economy, I can’t quite get it to stretch for the flight and hotel as I would like for this year’s trip. And that’s even the cheapest flight + a full two weeks at a 3 star hotel. And time is running out, at least for the best priced plane tickets.

Last week, an idea turned up. What if I can get the trip itself sponsored somehow? I would already have enough for spending money (including tickets to see several Blue Man Group shows) by that time, it’s just the trip itself that’s biting my bum.

A sponsored trip would take a large chip off my shoulders for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. But how would the best way to get a sponsor for this?

Then, it struck me: online auctions.

Tomorrow, when my paycheck comes in, I plan to put up an auction ad on, a Norwegian branch of a large European online auctioneering service (comparable to eBay), with additional highlighting and the works. It’s a certain cost, I know, but it’s a lot easier than finding funds for this vacation elsewhere.

In exchange for the sponsorship, I plan to offer advertising on this blog (inside the the blog posts themselves, not just hidden away in the small Google AdSense space below my navigation meny), and going to various tourist attractions in and around New York as a walking advertising board. That is, clothes with visible logos in large print, both on T-shirt(s), backpack, baseball cap, and if needed, pants. In case of rain, I will also have a poncho or an umbrella, also covered in logos. And if my sponsor wants to, I can hand out various effects (buttons, T-shirts, whatever) to random strangers.

I plan to catch everything on camera, both as photos and as video (using my digital camera), and post these on my blog, on Flickr and on YouTube, both to increase the sponsor effect, and to provide a form of proof that I’m keeping my end of the deal.

And, like I did in Stockholm, I also plan to post a daily summary of my experiences, and this time, the sponsor will get exposure in every summary report.

I plan to take a flight out of Ålesund on Sunday, July 17, and leave New York on Monday, August 1. That’s a full two weeks for sponsor exposure, and 15 nights at a hotel. Nothing has been booked yet, but I hope to get this in order barely after the Easter holidays this next week (that is, if I manage to get a sponsor).

I’ll be hammering out the details in a agreement document hopefully by the end of today. I already have made a spreadsheet to calculate the final value price that will invoice me from the winning bid, which shows me what I have to set as a starting bid to get the funding I need for flights+hotel (which will be booked either through Expedia or Travellink, another online travel agent that’s in the same price range as Expedia – these two alternate on who’s better priced).

My preliminary queries say that I’ll have to expect a low-cost (but user-recommended) three-star hotel and matching flights will cost 20,000 NOK (or, with the current exchange rates, about $3,700 for you Americans – yes, the Norwegian krone has a big advantage over the US dollar these days) and up. That’s after the winning bid commission is withdrawn, though.

Unless someone else steps in and wants to bypass, I’ll go ahead with the action tomorrow.

Fingers crossed!

Stockholm 2010, day six (final), going home

05.10.2010 23:54

Final day, and time to just wake up, pack up the last few things before I check out of the hotel and start my way towards the airport.

I was a bit worried about getting the spin art from the day before with me home, but after a few tweaks to my suitcase (if I open up a special zipper in the lid, the suitcase can contain about 2-3 cm more stuff), I was able to carefully squeeze the frame into the lid. I was already looking up options for mailing it home or cost for extra pieces of luggage on my flight (the first piece of luggage is free with SAS, anything beyond that costs extra), but the fact that it managed to fit into the lid made me relax a whole lot more.

I had been up almost all night surfing the web and didn’t get around to really turn in for the night before closer to 6 in the morning. I already had my phone’s alarm clock set to a 8:30 wake-up call, since they stop serving the breakfast buffet at 10, with an additional wake-up at 11 (final check-out is at 12, or noon). I woke up just slightly at the first wake-up call, and decided I could just catch a few more hours of sleep and find something on the way to the airport instead.

I’m thankful for almost eternal repeat (the app I use for my phone’s alarm clock makes me solve mathematical problems to completely shut off the alarm) – I didn’t get my ass out of the hotel room until it was closer to 11:55, which is really pushing it. I took the bus the usual three stops to where I can switch to the subway. There’s a Burger King right next to this stop, and I had originally thought about grabbing me a burger menu (I didn’t have to be at the airport for another 2 hours at least), but I decided to just travel all the way to the airport, get myself to the baggage drop and be done with it. The subway leads about 4 stops to T-Centralen, which is where just about all public transportation in Stockholm meets, including the Arlanda Express, which takes me to the airport in 20 minutes or less.

Yes, this little folder

Arriving at the airport at about 13:10, I felt I had all the time in the world, and after walking about 5-10 minutes around the check-in area to find my airline’s check-in terminals and baggage drop-off counters, I suddenly realized I had forgotten my folder aboard the airport express train.

Now, this is where I kept a written copy of the booking reference code, one of my credit cards (more specifically, the credit card I used to pay for this trip), and last but not least, my passport.

You can imagine the sense of panic I felt at that moment. I rushed downstairs to the airport express trains and waited for the next train to arrive. I tried looking in through the windows around where I sat, hoping it was the exact same train I arrived on myself, but without luck. Finally, one of the train staff noticed the slightly confused and worried person that I had become at that point, and approached me. I explained the situation, and he managed to call up the train central for more information. The train he was operating was at its last stop, and would be switching tracks to leave for the city about 5 minutes later, but he would meet me again at the track at the other side of the platform to give me an update.

Sure enough, the guys at the central had found my folder, and the person now holding my travel folder would be on the train arriving at 14:10, about 40 minutes later. I patiently waited at the platform until the time came, and I finally got it back, with an immense feeling of relief.

I rushed back upstairs to check in my baggage (SAS lets you check in to the flight and select seats up to 22 hours before the flight, so I did just that the night before), first via one of the check-in terminals (for a baggage attachment), and then over the the drop-off counter. When I had dropped off my suitcase, I looked at the clock up on the wall; it was now 14:30. The flight takes off at 15:35, and baggage has to be checked in no later than an hour on international flights (this was for a flight from Stockholm, Sweden to Oslo, Norway). So much for that relaxing extra time I was hoping for.

Next up was a quite long walk through the security checkpoint and to my gate (which was probably as far away as you could possibly get – if you’re on an international-bound flight at Arlanda airport outside Stockholm, try walking the distance to gate 10A, you’ll see what I mean). I managed to grab me a cinnamon bun and a croissant along with an orange soda (Zingo) when I had found my gate, just to eat at least something (and those were the only things I found tempting at the time).

The transfer from an international flight to a domestic flight at Gardermoen airport (outside Oslo) was no picnic, either. I now remember what I hate about travelling internationally, especially if the first airport I arrive at on an international flight isn’t the airport of my final destination. I have to walk a long way to the baggage pick-up, take my luggage, haul it through customs and outside the security checkpoint, where I have to check-in my baggage again (I can go directly to the drop-off counter this time, though) and go through the security checkpoint all over again. I don’t think I’ve walked that far in a very long time.

Good thing the next flight of my trip wasn’t leaving for another 2 hours or so. After finally finding some decent food (the choice finally landed on a heated ham and cheese ciabatta), I found the right gate for my flight (which wasn’t up on the boards yet when I first arrived through the checkpoint) and sat down for some eating time. The flight appeared to be slightly delayed, and seemed to be the last of the 19:10 flights to start boarding, but this slight delay allowed me to finish my ciabatta and soda before the boarding started.

Some flights can really be tiresome. I just hope the flight portion of my next trip goes more smoothly. I don’t know when or where my next trip will be, though, but I hope it won’t be too long.

And for those who are interested, I’ve uploaded all photos from this week to my Flickr account:

Flickr photoset: Late Summer Vacation 2010

Stockholm 2010, day five

04.10.2010 04:29

Another great day, and tomorrow I’ll be on my way home. Even so, it does feel like I’ve been here for more than a week, and I certainly wished I had time to experience even more.

I didn’t get much done today, other than the last dose of Blue Man Group for a while.

I met up with the stage production supervisor (I believe his name is Richard Herrick – at least that’s what the program says, and it sounds about right) at 14:45 (or 2:45 PM for you 12-hour geeks out there), a little over an hour before the show would be starting. He had been at the Stockholm show for some time now, as he was training someone to take over the production supervision for the Stockholm show while he went to London. He usually travels around a bit, and is involved in every Blue Man Group stage production all over the world.

He took me backstage, and was told I would get some secrets to things behind the production. Just that bit of trust kept me from taking out my camera and snapping shots like mad. I’ll share some trivia tidbits with you, the blog readers, but I’ll keep some of the secrets to myself, to avoid spoiling too much of the fun.

I actually got to know a little about how Chris, Matt and Phil (the original three Blue Men – last names are Wink, Goldman and Stanton, in that order) got started in their stage production. They got their start in New York, which is also where the Blue Man Productions global headquarters are located, an organization which I believe turns 20 next year. In the beginning, these three were performing every single show themselves, but when Phil hurt his hand bad, it prevented him from drumming, a major part of the Blue Man character. One of their regular drummers had learned much of the show to heart, and they decided to give him a chance at taking Phil’s place in the performance of the show. This went over quite well, and it showed that anyone, with the right training (combined with the right height and build), can perform as a Blue Man, which in turn opened up for what would later be a global expansion. Today, there are permanent shows (more or less) in New York, Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Orlando, Berlin and Tokyo, with touring shows around the U.S. and around Europe (currently in Stockholm, but moving on to Vienna in November).

And as I figured out, the stage production supervisor is more or less like the director of the show, directing the pace of the show as it happens, and a direct line to each of the performers’ ears, to give directions and visual cues for the show elements.

I got to see the what the stage looks like before the show starts (mainly, what’s obscured by the big white screen when the audience is allowed to enter and find their seats), where I found some things I expected (like the “angel airpoles” seen as shadows at the very beginning), and some things that surprised me (I’m not telling). And a close view of the text board and the preparation of the cereal boxes. I got a closer look at the “main” PVC instrument (or, at least, one half of it), along with the props used in that exact half (several sets of paddles and lighters – yes, that half). I also got to see the paint drums up close, and the mechanics that drives the special effects associated with them (lights and the flow of paint). I even got to see the LED back wall up close (where some video is shown). Next, our focus turned to the prop room, which they take with them on the tour. This “kitchen” is where they prepare all of the props used in each show, along with a big fridge which keeps some elements cooled between each show. I got to see props for the shows, and one of the backpack tubulums, stored near the props station. I also got an unsold spin art from the day before, as well as drum sticks. These are the type of drum sticks used for the paint drumming. The soft spot at the end simply gets soaked by the paint, eventually to the point where the drum sticks are no longer usable, which was why I just got a pair.

Next, we headed off to the other side of the stage, where the TV heads, the other backpack tubulum, a few more props (close-up of the “gumballs”), and a make-up station for the Blue Men. This is where they come backstage at certain points to freshen up their blue make-up, and more or less vent at eachother (the Blue Man character doesn’t talk, so they get a chance to talk a little while there’s a video showing up on the large screen.

Another fun fact: for each show, the performers are assigned one of the three characters; left, center and right. Or Matt, Chris and Phil, as they’re also called (named after the original performers and founding members of Blue Man Group – not exactly in that order, but Chris was always the center one). Each of these characters have specific tasks during the show (which are usually improvised upon, depending on the situation). The original performers no longer perform at any of the shows, though, but they are more involved in the management and creative direction of the shows’ content.

The backstage tour was shorter than expected, but a fun experience. I was even introduced to several crew members as the backstage tour went along. The crew was from just about everywhere, some from Berlin, some picked up in Basel, Zurich, the US, just to mention a few.

The show itself was great as usual, but now it’s over for this round. Maybe I’ll be able to go the US of A again next year? You never know.

Now I just need to figure out how to get all of this with me back home…

Stockholm 2010, day four

03.10.2010 12:21

Another day over, and it has been quite the Blue Man experience for me. 🙂

I had three shows lined up for the day, and I chose to wear the white T-shirt I got from Blue Man Group Las Vegas in one of their Twitter giveaways. After every show, the band and the Blue Men always come out to the lobby for photos, and after today’s first show, one of them spotted me in my white Blue Man Group T-shirt, and decided to give me a nice blue handprint on my belly. In paint.

Not this guy, though. I didn't get a photo of the one that made the handprint. But at least that's the white T-shirt.

After the second show, just outside the lobby, actually, one of the Blue Men (don’t remember if it was the same one) spotted me in my white Blue Man Group T-shirt with a blue handprint on it, and decided to give me an extra souvenir. He took an arm’s length distance, and went head-on into another blank spot on my T-shirt. Yep, I got myself a hefty face print as well.

At this point, my T-shirt was so full of paint that I decided to rush back to the hotel (in a taxi, to make it quicker – the next show was only about an hour or so away) and change to a different T-shirt. This type of paint takes a very long time to dry, so I had to change to avoid getting blue paint all over. After a quick cleaning and a new T-shirt, I rushed back to the theater for the third and last show of the day. Once again, an awesome show.

In the lobby afterwards, while I was talking a little bit to the band, I was suddenly approached by a man who identified himself as the production manager (or at least that’s what I thought I heard, it was so noisy in the lobby I didn’t even catch his name). They have apparently noticed me coming to every show this week, and wanted to do a little extra special for me. Today (I’m writing this on the day after, actually), I’ll be meeting him again outside the theater a little over an hour before today’s show, and I’ll get to go backstage (!) after they’re done with the soundcheck.

As it turns out, this vacation may actually get a bit bigger than I originally had hoped for. After grabbing a bit to eat last night, I ran into one of the band members on the subway, heading in roughly the same direction as me. Since the subway train he was going on runs past where I was going, we both got on the same train and had a small chat about his little part of the production (he’s the one on the far left in the above photo, btw).

I’ll be sure to take plenty of pictures backstage (where possible) and upload them to my Flickr when I get home Monday night.

But first, a quick nap before I head out.

Stockholm 2010, day three

02.10.2010 03:18

Oh my, what a day it has been.

I decided to start off today with a trip to Tekniska museet (the science museum). There certainly was a lot to explore, with just about every technical science represented (mining, energy production, cars, airplanes, metal work, inventions, space exploration, and much more). Although I didn’t have enough time for it, the museum also boasts to have the only 3D movie theater in Sweden. I’ll see if I can drop by either tomorrow or on Sunday before the 4 pm shows with Blue Man Group.

Speaking of which, I had two shows with Blue Man Group today. And again, they were awesome! I (almost) can’t get enough at this point! Then again, I’m glad that it’s just this week with shows. I don’t wanna get too full up with the experience. If Blue Man Group was playing in my town, though, I might get around to see them once a week, or at least 2-3 shows a month. I’m doing what appears to be overkill right now because I have to travel so far just to get access to these shows. The closest permanent show is in Berlin (Germany), and the closest English-speaking show is currently New York. I can’t exactly afford taking trips to either of these locations on a regular basis (at least not for the time being).

And so, for the Blue Man afficionados out there, here’s the complete set list for the Stockholm shows (I actually wrote them down this time – those who have been to more than one show with Blue Man Group knows what these mean):

  • TV Song
  • Paint drumming on canvas
  • Opening Mandelbrot / Marshmallows and Gum Balls
  • Text boards / Captain Crunch (or in the case of Sweden, Kalaspuffar)
  • Tension 2 / You’re Late (“Ni är sena”)
  • Modern Plumbing (“Avloppssystemet”) / Drumbone
  • Feast Picking / The Feast (using Kinder Brioss instead of Twinkies)
  • PVC IV
  • Dance moves + Tributes / Time To Start
  • Animation (without using zoetropes)
  • Utne Wire Man (using a cyber café, but without light suits)
  • TV Heads
  • Klein Mandelbrot
  • Chant Jam / Paper Finale
  • Paint drumming finale

There, that should cover it. I’ll be attending 3 shows tomorrow – and I’m still looking forward to see it all again.

Stockholm 2010, day two

01.10.2010 01:27

Second day is up, and what a day it has been!

The daytime was all open for me, and after considering the list of pre-selected possibilities, I decided to go for Leksaksmuseet (the toy museum) and spend a few hours. When I got there, I eventually found out that the toy museum was waaaaay at the back of Spårvägsmuseet (the railway museum), with a common entry ticket.

Since I already was there, I walked around the old trams and buses of past and present Stockholm. It was actually surprisingly interesting to basically see the development of inner city public transportation from the late 13th century until today.

This wasn’t just relevant for just Stockholm, though. It felt relevant for just about any city with a wide range of public transportation.

Next up, the Toy Museum. I know Mike Mozart would get a kick out of this one. 🙂 There was a large collection of old and new toys. Teddy bears (and other stuffed animals), dolls, toy cars, model ships, model airplanes, Meccano, trains, puzzles, board games, dioramas and much more. And, as one of the highlights, the museum was donated a rather large toy car collection back in 2008. It consisted of about 1400 cars in 1/43 size from all possible manufacturers, like Dinky Toys, Corgi, Schuco, Solido, Brum, Polistil, Rio and many more. The collection alone fills four huge display cases at the museum.

I took a large amount of photos from both museum sections (both the railway museum and the toy museum). The Internet connection at the hotel isn’t that good, so I’ll post the whole gallery to my Flickr account when I return.

I can absolutely recommend a trip to these two museums, but keep in mind that you might spend about 3 hours to get through it at a good pace. The entry ticket for both museums is 40 SEK (or roughly 6 USD) for adults, so it’s totally worth it.

After the museum closed, it was time to make my way to Göta Lejon for my pre-purchased pre-show dinner.

I had already bought a burger menu when I bought the ticket for the Thursday show. This was definitely far from McD or BK quality. We’re talking genuine gourmet burger here.

The show itself was awesome, as usual. Something I didn’t quite expected, was that all text was translated to Swedish. And the finale wasn’t the new one, as obviously first seen on the current North American tour (I’m guessing it will be a while before that one comes to the current productions around the world, then).

Aside from those two items, which were all about hightened expectations, I had a great time. I don’t remember the set list from memory from tonight, but I’ll post it after tomorrow’s shows.

And now, bedtime again!

Stockholm 2010, day one

30.09.2010 00:10

My first day is just about over, and not much has happened.

My day started with the airport bus at 10 am, lift-off to Bergen at 11:05, and touchdown in Stockholm around 2 pm, the Arlanda Express arriving in the city center a little before 3 pm, getting a little lost trying to find the right subway track going near my hotel, and finally checking in at 3:45 pm.

I was originally going to the first Blue Man Group performance of the week at 7:30 pm, but I got an e-mail from the ticket agency on Friday letting me know that the Wednesday show was cancelled. To tell you the truth, I was a little disappointed. Still, there’s always the other 7 shows, starting with the 7:30 pm show tomorrow (Thursday).

I spent the left-over time using the free Wifi connection at the hotel (for hotel guests), wasting several hours. The fact that there’s a supermarket next door to the hotel comes in handy for snacking supplies, though. I finally got my ass together around 8 pm to get some dinner.

Today’s dining choice became Stockholms Matvarufabrik, about 1 block away from the hotel. The menu was limited, the dining area was a bit so-so (but clean). I’m not a big fan of the deliberate worn-down interior designs, which is probably why I didn’t enjoy the atmosphere too much.

My choice on the menu landed on venison with pumpkin, duck liver, black currant and liqourice ( hjortrygg med variation på pumpa, halstrad anklever, svarta vinbär och lakritsrot hjort med gresskar, andelever, solbær og lakris). Delicious!

And now, for a shower and it’s off to bed for me…