Except, you can’t, obviously. Because we’re not allowed to go there, just like we’re not allowed to go to Oman or Guatemala or… er… Angola or Rwanda. They’re so obviously racist.
Anyway, I went to Mauritius in 2016, but we can’t go to there either, so I’ve been reliving another 2016 trip: Norway. And I’ve mostly been doing it by chilling out in my office chair while taking a train from Bergen to Flåm (via Myrdal, obviously).
Bang it up to 4K, sit back and let someone else do the driving.
It’s actually quite accurate for the live weather today as it leaves Bergen: cold and grey. And I know that because I had a wander onto the live webcam overlooking the city this morning. Sadly, as I write, it being winter and Bergen being quite far Norf, it’s already going dark there.
All the little lights. Very pretty. Decent vaccination numbers too.
I mentioned the relatively recent phenomenon of buildings covered in scaffolding, and the scaffolding then being covered with a picture of the building. Last night, I came across an example of this in the photo-archives, dating from 2013
And here it is:
This isn’t something that I’ve seen much (any?) of in South Africa. It could be that I haven’t been in the right place at the right time, of course. Or it could be that we just don’t do that when historic buildings are being repaired.
Norway, though – definitely. I remember being fooled (from a distance at least) when visiting Bryggen – the old wharf in Bergen – part of which was being renovated.
I mean, now you know it’s there, you can zoom in and have a closer look and yes, there is the temporary false facade. Bingo. But if I’d shared this image without context, you’d surely never have known that two of those seventeen colourful buildings weren’t genuine.
Go closer (by walking around the harbour to the end of the row) and the requirements of sheer functionality make it rather more obvious:
Somewhere out there, there is a company (in fact, possibly more than one) that manufactures bespoke scaffolding covers like this. They’re probably the same ones who have been making the massive decorative tarpaulins that have been covering the empty seats in football stadiums during lockdown.
It does seem an awfully specific product though. Presumably, when we’re not in the middle of a pandemic or repairing historic buildings once every 100 years, there must be some other use for huge specifically-printed pieces of fabric.
But no. Imagine my dismay when I noted that this was a sunset in Bergen, Norway (but yes, still repulsively oversaturated probably in a desperate attempt to garner Facebook likes for the purposes of self-validation).
Bergen #RBOSS. Ugh.
I thought that the Norwegians had more taste than to wander down the rather tacky road of faking just how beautiful a beautiful view can be. And much like the Manx (and those of us in Cape Town) they are really spoiled for beautiful views that honestly don’t need ruining just because you feel that you need people to click on a certain part of their screen when looking at them.
This rapid dissemination of #RBOSS is hugely concerning. Like the epidemiology of measles through a stupidly unvaccinated population or the ridiculous geographical expansion of Constantia, it’s frankly terrifying and needs to be stopped.