Here’s a new destination, folks: Playland, or Lekeland, as it’s called in the local lingo – in Drammen, Norway.
Bring earplugs – the noise level is well above an average Metallica concert, with about 100 kids. Could be 200 or 300. Sounds like 1 000. All yelling and screaming at the top of their lungs. Simultaneously and continuously. I expect the Ministry of Health would have a thing or two to say about this as a place of work. You could easily argue hearing damage.
I’m here because of a careless promise – or rather bribe – I made to my youngest daughter last summer when she walked cheerfully most of the way up to Mount Gaustadtoppen in Telemark: In return for crawling up those rocky mountain paths with her little 4-year-old legs, I would take her to Lekeland sometime before Christmas.
Silly me for thinking she might forget. I’ve been reminded about once per day for the last 5 months – and with Christmas just all of a sudden right around the corner… here I bloody am. Which reminds me of the new “Come to Australia”-ads. You know, the “Where the bloody hell are you?”-ads. I’d love to be able to say “here I bloody am” from somewhere on a Sunshine Coast beach or something. Instead Playland …
The little one was allowed to bring a friend. Smart move, so I don’t have to slide down that pink slide 5 000 times.
Luckily, computers are available free of charge; not counting the steep 50 kroner entrance fee for adults. Which means, unless you have a strong urge to slide on pink plastic, you pay for hanging in the café, buying equally steeply priced hot dogs, plastic glasses filled with multi-coloured slush (no doubt disturbingly full of artificial E-substances), coffee or sticky buns. Yep – I’ve now tried all 4 items on offer.
I’m in the bored parents’ corner, hanging on to one of two computers. The other bored parents must carry on with their knitting, newspaper-reading, breast-feeding, telly-watching (Norway – Germany handball match is on and we seem to be in the lead), or get on with the aforementioned pink plastic slide.
So she was just here. Eyes bright and shining, cheeks flushed. Big hug. “You’re the best mum in the world”. Awww!