Where: Børøy, Norway
Plate of food: Since Børøy is an island off the southwestern coast of Norway, we had to travel by ferry. If you have ever been on a ferry in Norway you will know that any self-respecting ferry will serve hot dogs on board. And any self-respecting Norwegian will eat one on board.
I secretly love this hot dog phenomenon in Norway, and had no qualms about eating one at every opportunity when I lived there.
As I sat nursing our baby girl on the ferry, I sent Matt to buy me a hot dog (only the very best for breastfeeding mums). Inadvertently he was given a cheese hot dog which has a molten core of orange processed cheese.
I bit into my hot dog and a geyser of bright orange cheese sauce erupted out the end of the dog, arching over my feeding baby, and splattering onto the floor.
I was shocked, to say the least, but I was relieved to see that the cheese incident had no witnesses: Matt was off paying for the ferry ticket, my baby was sleeping, and no one was sitting near us.
Then I looked up.
And locked eyes with a pre-teen boy who gazed at me with a fair amount of disgust.
I did the only thing I could – I stared straight at him as I took another bite of that hot dog.
The Best: The highlight for me was simply staying in a Norwegian hytte (cabin). Norway is dotted with thousands of hytter from the rugged coasts to the snowiest mountains. Most are remote, a lot of them are painted bright red, some you can rent for your holiday, and all of them are as cozy as can be.
We were lucky enough to stay in a number of these picturesque cabins during our time in Norway. This one on Børøy was one of the best with its location right on the water, its tranquility, and its private boat that we could use to explore the surrounding islands.
We had two holidays there – full of fishing, card games, walks to the apple orchard, boat trips, views of glass-like water, and complete silence.
Norway – I love you, your hytter, AND your hot dogs.
Story that needs to be told: I am not a fisherman. In fact, at the age of 27, I had never caught a fish before. Matt, on the other hand, enjoys fishing and was keen to fish while on Børøy; he often took the boat out for an hour or two.
I patiently waited while he fished, spending my time with an infant who had no desire to fish nor, more depressingly, to sleep.
After a particularly sleepless night and a bleary-eyed day, Matt suggested that I fish off the pier as evening approached. He insisted that it would be relaxing, distracting, and peaceful.
I begrudgingly dragged the fishing rod out to the pier, muttering about not knowing what I was doing. As I settled into the rhythm of casting, listening for the satisfying “plop” of the lure, and reeling in, I had to admit that this was exactly the simple task I needed to unwind.
And then I caught a fish.
And the next day in my new-found obsession with finding time to fish, I caught a pollack big enough for us to actually cook and eat.
BOOM. Hunter-gatherer extraordinaire.
Except I didn’t want to actually touch the fish. Or gut it. Or clean it. But still, BOOM.
“Too often. . .I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen.” Louis L’Amour