May 6 and 7 update

(Post by Tara Kram)

As you have read in the previous posts, we had to say goodbye to our host families in Sande on May 6.  Prior to saying goodbye, we met with the mayor of Sande who shared about the city and also with Barbara who is the cultural director for Sande.  She will be part of the Norwegian GSE team going to our district next week.  Sande has a rich history and is growing in leaps and bounds.  

(right to left  Cindy, Anjanette, Diane, Mayor, Krista, Jody, Tara)

Our goodbyes were very tearful as we grew close to our families very quickly.  Thank you to Inger and Jan-Torbjorn for being the hosts for Krista and I (Tara).  You were more than just hosts; you are now our Norwegian family!  

(Inger and Jan-Torbjorn – Krista and Tara’s hosts)

We drove to our new homes with several of the Rotary members from Stokke.  Anjanette, Krista, and Cindy are all staying with Thomas, his wife, and 3 children.  Jody and I are staying with Otto and Inger just down the street.  All are very kind hosts.  In the evening we presented for the Stokke Rotary club and were impressed with their detailed brochure of our activities for the week.  

Today, May 7, we spent the morning and afternoon in Stokke.  We began at fort Sundasen which was constructed in case Norway went to war with Sweden when they decided to become independent in 1905.  The fort was never used as the separation was peaceful.  The Rotary club of Stokke cares for the fort to keep it preserved well.  

We then saw a state of the art Christian conference center, an old farm museum, a theater group, and a Christian horticultural high school.  The school was quite impressive as the students not only study general topics, but they have significant hands on experience in horticulture.  We had lunch at their garden café – delicious salads and bread with brie.  

In the afternoon we were dropped off in Tondsberg to see the city for a few hours.  Anjanette, Krista, Jody, and I toured the shops while Diane and Cindy had a drink at a restaurant on the water.  We then hiked up to the castle that overlooks the city.  The ruins surrounding the castle are from the 12th century.  The castle was rebuilt in the 1800’s.  

After dinner with our hosts, we went for a nice walk by the water in Sande.  Now it is bedtime as we are getting up early to take a boat to Sweden for some shopping. 

(Post by Tara Kram)

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