Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Scandinavia Trip Day 7: Oslo, Stockholm


Ever had one of those days when every single thing just goes wrong?

Well, today is such day.

It is a series of unfortunate events.


First, the breakfast the hotel packed for us is dry and tasteless
(but still I finish everything)


And then, because of height restrictions, the double-decker bus that takes us to the train station cannot park near our platform, so we have to walk all the way to the opposite end of the station to board our train.


This artwork greets us as we get off the bus


oslo central stationWe lug around all our luggages (there’s many, I tell you) through crowds, escalators, slopes and bumpy ground just to get to our platform.


Of course, along the way, someone trips, someone gets stuck in the revolving door, and someone falls face down on his luggage.


230428_10150172641589570_510889569_6595088_434064_nWhen we finally get to Track 6 where we are supposed to board the train, we are told that there is no train service today and that we have to walk all the way to Track 19 to board the bus to Stockholm


221922_10150172642469570_510889569_6595121_8197827_nAnd so we lug our heavy bags and even heavier selves back through all the crowds, escalators, slopes and bumpy ground to get to Track 19


We wait forever at Track 19 only to be told that the train is coming after all, and that we have to hurry back to Track 6 or else we’ll miss it.






So we rush back to Track 6… lugging luggages… through crowds… escalators… slopes… bumpy ground…

I guess I can say I now know Oslo Central Station like the back of my hand.


Train to Stockholm


We’re in it. Finally!!!
Uncle Frank, Auntie Babie, and the 3 Fayes


Mr. Ty, Flor and Me


It’s 7am and I’ve already done a whole day of walking.
I just have to reward myself with chips, hot chocolate and a bar of chocolate.


While the others doze off, I amuse myself watching this girl on the other side of the train.


She eats


She raises her legs and she reads


Then she sleeps


228537_10150172641879570_510889569_6595100_6499363_nWhen we are just a few stops away from Stockholm, the train has to stop and wait for
1.5 hours due to a fire in one of the stations. Tell me, isn’t today our lucky day.


227927_10150172642084570_510889569_6595107_152134_n 224744_10150172642054570_510889569_6595105_3073165_n
                         Ernest doesn’t care                                                            Vibson is pissed


228747_10150166353222293_718632292_6928495_5078642_n 225103_10150172642144570_510889569_6595108_7624335_n
       Frances and Felisse go Justin Bieber                                   And Florence… she eats


I eat, too. Nothing better to do.


Well, except take stolen shots of interesting hair.

Dirty-looking rope-like hair


Very interesting facial hair


Finally, at past 3pm, our train approaches Stockholm


Stockholm, the largest city and capital of Sweden, is the most populated urban area
in all of Scandinavia


Frances and friends at Central Station


224682_10150166356882293_718632292_6928518_4965905_nWe spot this grandpa with his cool ride while waiting for other tour mates to come out
from the station


Turns out one of our tour mates fell on the escalator.

And when she finally comes out, our tour bus engine wouldn’t start.

Unfortunate events.


228075_10150172642754570_510889569_6595130_884858_n“Uh oh,” thinks this unshaven man whom the travel agency hired just for the purpose of leading our group from train to bus


Anyway, after a few tries, the bus engine starts and we are finally on our way to lunch




People, bicycles, buildings, train


Locals enjoying a Thursday afternoon


221654_10150172644094570_510889569_6595175_2964960_nTourists starving on a Thursday afternoon


223368_10150172643114570_510889569_6595142_6921204_nStockholm is a beautiful city with saffron and terracotta-colored buildings.
It is my favorite among all cities we visit this trip.


226758_10150172642914570_510889569_6595135_8237447_nPay toilet


Trattoria Romana, our lunch venue


Or at least that’s what we thought


225276_10150172643179570_510889569_6595146_6657960_nAfter we are all seated down and ready to eat, the restaurant refuses to serve us lunch.
(Don’t ask, I don’t know)
@#$%&!!!!!!! It is 4pm and we are dying of hunger!


So we get on the bus again, drive to Gamla Stan or Old Town to look for another restaurant.


Gamla Stan Waterfront


national museum stockholmNational Museum


royal palace stockholmRoyal Palace and Obelisk


royal palace stockholmRoyal Palace, closer this time


Poliswoman on polishorse


stockholm cathedralStockholm Cathedral


stortorgetStortorget, the oldest square of Stockholm, is picturesque and filled with history.
In 1520, King Christian II used the square as the site for Stockholm Blood Bath
where he beheaded and hanged 90 people


stortorgetNowadays, Stortorget is a tourist destination lined with restaurants and cafes


stock exchange building stockholmThe Stock Exchange Building on the northern side of the square houses the
Swedish Academy, Nobel Museum and Nobel Library


223571_10150172643794570_510889569_6595166_2460802_nThe Well


225021_10150172643564570_510889569_6595159_222876_nDaddy’s got pimpin’ hair


Our 5pm lunch is at restaurant Stortorgskallaren


Starved or not, the hazelnut raisin bread is the bomb!


I think someone forgot to put dressing on the salad


Lingonberries and pickled cucumber


swedish meatballsThe meatballs made with lamb, beef and pork are so rich and flavorful,
the gravy so thick and the mashed potato so creamy. The sweet tartness of
the lingonberries cuts through the richness and creaminess perfectly.
I finish my plate in no time. Easily the best meal of our trip.


230190_10150172643704570_510889569_6595163_6264461_nChocolate truffle is dark, smooth and sexy


Wiped out


After lunch, we get on the bus and head out to dinner.

Don’t look at me like that. It IS, after all, dinner time.


malardrottningenYes, this ship is a hotel and a restaurant


Welcome aboard Malardrottningen



Group shot while waiting for food


Only Vibson’s mom can pull off this pose


Cream of chicken and corn


Salmon belly with marbled potatoes in dill cream


Raspberry tea cake with whipped cream and fruits


228492_10150166366397293_718632292_6928667_4370687_nThe Aunties and Uncles of our trip


After dinner, we check in at Elite Palace Hotel, drop off our bags and go out for drinks.


Our bartender at Grappa


We ask him for a “Swedish drink.” He says he’ll create a special Swedish concoction just for us. Ooohh. This “special cocktail” turns out to be just Absolut vodka + cranberry juice + lemon juice. Ayiah! No need to travel all the way to Sweden, I can make this
special Swedish drink for you in Manila.


Wanting a quick buzz for a good night’s sleep, we order a round of tequila shots


Florence, Felisse, Frances, Erwin, Me, Ernest, and Edward Cullen


We almost died when we saw the bill

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