Bergen, Norway and the last leg of this outing of Finding Joy. Landing in Bergen to find immaculate wooden floors and designer wooden seating with plush black cushions in the arrivals hall gives me a sense of this organised Nordic country that has an IKEA store on every corner.
We are here as part of the Mini Midi Maxi Festival and come with duty free bottles to combat the very high prices that we were warned about. Mind you, some of us missed out as there was a last minute dash from customs to the departure gate that was closing in one minute when, yet again, the nomad (huge and heavy screen for the show) was packed, unpacked, re-checked and checked again by curious security officials.
The sign in the hotel lift tells us that it rains for 266 days on average here and that has been very true. We are a bit soggy most of the time and some members of the company (who wish to remain anonymous) have discovered that the under floor heating in the shower is excellent for drying jeans.
Bergen is surrounded by seven mountains which encourage the clouds to drop their load. We took the furnicular up the nearest one to see the view. Beautiful, for a brief moment, then obscured by heavy mist but the walk down the mountain through woods was fabulous, and our horticulturist on the team found a new flower while James sat on a carved log and stopped talking for about 3 minutes. Wondrous.
Our shows went well and we had great feedback plus a friendly and efficient team of technicians and festival volunteers to work with. It has been a lovely tour and it is a bit sad to say farewell to the company on the road-some people I have not worked with before and two of the other oldies, Alan and James, who I last worked with about 25 years ago. Apologies to the other cast and crew for endless reminiscences!
Bye bye Bergen and a lovely team and onward to my real job….thanks, it's been fun.