Speaking of the jet, we flew on SAS' Airbus A340-300. You don't get more legroom, but you do get a very nice PTV (Personal TV) system. While PTV's aren't breaking news any longer, most of them don't have 10 movies (refreshingly un-edited), digital games, and my favorite the two outside camera views (forward and straight down). I flew on similar SAS jets to Norway last year. I was still impressed by the PTV system a year later.
9 hour later we arrive in Copenhagen. After about a 1 1/2 hour layover (time enough to eat some good pastries) we jump on the small Dehavilland DHC8 (same damn planes I frequently fly on Horizon Air here in Seattle) for a short flight north to Goteborg. Fog and rain made for a bumpy flight- I call it real flying. Not until we were on short final did the clouds break.
This would be the beginning and end of the rain. The Volvo (of course!) taxi took us to the SAS Radisson in downtown Goteborg. After a regenerating shower we head out for dinner. A Volvo salesrep recommended a pub/restaurant a couple of blocks away called Ferdinands. Good choice!
Sunday morning we awake to brilliant sunshine. Perfect! Time to walk around the city. But a swim in the pool first. Sonja's eagle eyes zero-in on a toy store. After bribery with ice cream we finally are on our way to explore.We walk up and down the main avenue of Goteborg. I was hoping to find some of the pastries that I always get in Norway, but no luck. I have to settle for something else. Still good.
Goteborg, like Hamburg, has several canals running throught it. We really didn't explore Goteborg enough, but we still got a taste of the city.
A light dinner at the hotel and back to the room. The TV has NRK 1 & 2 stations so I get to watch Norwegian news. Norway still has a chance at the World Cup, by the way. It was big news.
Monday morning after plowing through the breakfast buffet we are picked up by a very black Volvo sedan. You can't but help feeling like a diplomate. Promptly we are shuffled to the large Volvo complex outside of town. For details look at the Volvo pictures.
A few hours later we are on E6 heading towards Malmo. I had planned on driving into town to see that cool new skyscraper, but it was starting to get a little late. Over the Oresund Bridge we go. A little expensive to cross, but it makes for a quick crossing from Sweden to Copenhagen. Too bad they didn't build a good viewing point to snap some pictures.
In rural (rural and Denmark of course is a relative term) Southern Denmark we find a small hotel near Rodby. Fancy it wasn't, but no problem. Like most things in Scandinavia, everything was clean. And the shower could have melted steel. Finding a place to eat dinner on a Monday evening in a small town about 9 PM was an issue. A gas station satisfies our gastrointestinal needs (sort of). Soda, tunafish and chips. Well balanced. Usually the bread in Europe is fantastic. This was the exception. If the military still needs armor for their HUMVEES in Iraq, I have found an edible solution in southern Denmark.
More buffet breakfast next morning. I go right for the soft boiled eggs. Jump in the Volvo and drive a few miles to the ferry to Germany. I was impressed by how large the ferry was considering the crossing is less than an hour.These ferries are more like the Queen Mary compared with the Seattle area ferries that I take on a regular bases. I am convinced the Washington State ferries must be former D-Day troop transporters. Of course it cost about twice as much to take boat in Denmark compared with, say, the Seattle to Bremerton ferry.
Off the ferry and into Germany. I've lost my language advantage (Norwegian, Swedish and Danish are very similar). When I try to speak Germany I need to follow up with a tetanus shot - it is that rusty. Knowing I plan on having some fun on the A1 (Autobahn 1) on the way to Hamburg I fill up the car with the highest octane gas I can find. They had a pump marked 100. Of course the formula used to calculate octane rating is a little different in Europe, but it still works out to be about 96 in US calculations (why can't any of this stuff - measurement - be the goddammed same in the US from the rest of the world!?!?!). Ouch 100 € (or about $125 US) we are on our way.
The rest of the story picks up in the Germany picture section.