The overnight train ride was about 7 hours long, though I had somewhat of a restless night. It took me a fair while to fall asleep. We arrived at Oslo Central Station at around 6 am and had about an hour to grab a bite to eat before our next train. It wasn’t long before we were boarding a regional train, actually bound for Stockholm (which was at first a bit confusing to be going back the way we came), but we’d be getting off at an intermediate station, Kil. By some stroke of luck, we managed to get seats directly across from a family with two young children and directly in front of a mother with a young infant. Our hopes of getting a bit more sleep were quickly dashed. The infant’s screams were particularly piercing, perhaps because it was so early in the morning, and we counted the minutes, all 150 of them, until our stop. It was a short layover in Kil, and we were back on the train bound for Gothenburg, which was, mercifully, a quiet journey. Fun fact about Gothenburg, which I didn’t realize until later, is that it is a sister (or twinned) city with Chicago.
We rolled into town just before 1 pm and went off in search of our accommodations, another AirBnB place. The apartment was within walking distance of the train station, and, after a quick phone call to our hosts to get the actual apartment building number, we were up in our room. The place was lovely and spacious, with a nice bed and sitting area, private bathroom and even a little kitchen area, with fridge, microwave and kettle. We had our own entrance as well, so we were completely autonomous. We rested a bit before heading out to explore the city. D had, unsurprisingly, done his Googling and had a local roastery he was eager to try out. The city was bustling with folk, out shopping and enjoying the sunshine, as we walked down one of the main commercial strips. We found our way to Da Matteo, which was super busy and had a fairly lengthy line. It was a pretty space, warm and bright from all the light wood tables and chairs. We did notice a conspicuous lack of any art on the walls, which lent itself to the minimalist chic of the space. D ordered a latte, though he regretted his choice of drink, as it wasn’t the best for showcasing the beans, and I had my usual hot chocolate. Perched on our stools, we people-watched for a time before heading back out.
We wandered across a bridge in search of an early dinner at a place recommended for its extensive beer collection. Ölerepubliken was a cute pub space, and, as advertised, had a sizable drink menu. D started off with an American Pale Ale from a local brewery, and I grabbed a glass of white wine. For grub, D ordered a cod dish with shrimp, egg and butter, not unlike the dish I’d had in Bergen the night before. It was tasty—the cod was a high quality fish, fresh and firm-fleshed, and not overcooked. I went with a little roast chicken with carrots, green beans and asparagus. It was a darling little chicken, moist and flavourful, and made for just the right amount of food. D capped off the meal with an Imperial Stout, also from a local brewery, which he noted was every bit imperial in its strength. We wandered back through the streets towards the apartment in the fading sunlight to catch up on our sleep.