So I was invited to visit a family in Norway that I have met once before and have sent a post card from every country I have been since I met them, which is a lot. I decided to make my way all the way up to Trondheim (where there is NOTHING to do) to spend the end of my vacation with them. Well, once I made the 2000 MILE trip to Norway from the Czech republic, we were told that Steve is not as invited as we had assumed. Norwegian are known for their shyness, unwant to offend, and basic version of MN nice, where it is more Norge Unsaid. Given we had planned to stay for longer than they thought originally, even with Steves best tricks could not convince them to host us that long, I was a littled shocked when they asked us to leave their house immediately after Christmas as over. They made a good point that it was not that Steve, but hated all animals equally. I suppose just like saying I don’t just hate “Insert race here” I hate all people equally. Like an animal that has just made friend all over Europe shouldn’t get an exception . Steve and I hate to be where we are not invited, that’s the last place we want to be, but I really wish we would have not planned our trip around this part of the country. It can be agrued to be NO lower than the 4th most expensive country in the world. But many say the most, and if you ask Mcdonalds, they charge the MOST for a big bag. Given Steve is now doing “trick” on the corner, it is getting us by. As she is a high priced bitch, as I may say so as her pimp. We don’t need other people, it’s not even cold this winter, we could live in the woods and I would have Steve hunt down our meals if there was anything to kill in the highlands of Norge.
PS, we were invited only to Xmas, it was my bad assumption that we would be asked or invited to stay for the rest of the holiday season.
Traveling with a dog is actually really easy if you are rich. if you have a car or a personal transport of some sort. Otherwise I have ran into a few problems with transportation. Mainly that on any website, at least in english, it does not say anything about dogs. In Germany it is because they don’t care. In Czech they do only because they want to charge you for it. Either to many time have I waited for a bus, and once it came they told me that I could not bring my dog, with dog passport or not. Now this puts a big pain in my ass, because damn three goats from hell if I am going to leave my dog in some foreign country. But I am sure Steve would just do “tricks” on the corner for money and make her way up to a rich bitch.
Now when I encounter this sort of situation I have three options. I can beg and plead for this bus driver to look the other way and let Steve on. The second option which is less embarrassing to me is to have Steve do all the pleading and begging. I am not sure if it is the bus drivers heart she melts or all the people, specifically ladies, on the bus who yell and rally behind Steve. The last is just to bribe your way through, which the easiest and smoothest behind actually being rich and driving yourself around.
The first time this happened we were lucky because there was another bus just 30 mins later that we could catch as long as we approached it the right way. We were going from Vienna to Brno, CZ. We were very surprised at these stupid employees insistence that Steve could not get on the bus, because we had used the SAME bus Agency to get there in the first place! either way, they were not having it. So I put Steve in her new Slovokian dog carrier, in which her whole body is rapped tightly in a brown bag with pictures of ground hogs all over, and just her head pokes out. But she cant lay in a circle like her old one, she must lay in a straight line. Well, this time I just put my light zippered hoody over Steve’s head and the length of the bag between the handles, through Steve over my shoulder after putting the rest of my bags under the bus. As I stood there in line to get on the bus, the bus “helper” they have here, ie they have 2 employees for every bus, walked up to me and poked Steve in her bag. I was all like what? He said “If you want you can put that bag under the bus”. I said no thanks, thinking the whole time “Keep your hands off my bag” like a woman and her purse. We got on the bus, Steve never made a noise and we made it to Brno.
The next time this happened it was late at night, we had just waited 12 hours for this bus because we missed the last one because it was to special to park by the other buses! So when the second guy helping with putting or bags underneath said that he doesn’t think we can bring a dog, it was murder. I really could not stand sitting in this shitty bus station in Warsaw any longer. Well, I decided that if I could slip her by the driver, which was apparently the decision maker, then maybe the subject would just go away. So I picked Steve up by the handle and just kept her low by my legs as I talked to the bus driver about where I was going and my ticket. Every ones on, but the secondary guy says something, so the bus driver walks down the isle going “bow wow” and “Ien Hunde?”. Finally he gets to me and say “me!”. He must have said “where is the bow wow” and I showed him Steve hiding behind the bag next to me, just with her little head popping above to see what was going on. We had the man sitting in front of us translate and the jist of it was that dogs were forbidden on the bus for more than one reason. Like the bus company was against it and the border was against it, or something. So I pick Steve up onto my lap and say if I leave the dog can I still go? With a little surprise I see, I show them here, I will just take my dog outside, then I rap my hands around Steve throat and squeeze. I will just kill the dog, leave her here and we go. Everyone in the bus Gasped at the idea. I am sure the thought teared up one woman. The crowed Goes WILD with conversation. It looks like old ladies are getting to bat the driver with thier purses. Men are in on it to, saying all sorts of apparently convincing things in polish. I could not speak or understand a word they were saying, but I knew it was some where along the lines of “get a heart” or “If you let him kill that dog, YOUR NEXT bus driver”. This didn’t go on long until he gave in, and said just to keep the dog down while going over the boarder and keep her quite. Not only did Steve not speak a work, but the border was joke! We didn’t have to get off and no one came on to look at anything. I already understood the reason I dont have 100 more stamps on my passport because of the damn EU, but at least it didn’t take anytime.
The Next time this happened wasn’t much later. We show up at the bus, and the bus driver says Steve needs a ticket. I go to the ticket office, they say they do not allow dogs on, they are not license and some other BS that we didn’t see online. So I go back to the driver and I just tell him they said “No ticket” not that they can’t ever. Well, he gets on the phone and calls the office that just talked to me. As I am on the phone, and the pissed off ladie is telling me the same thing she already told me, the bus driver is being bombarded by question from the other people on the bus. Well he decided if it is so important to everyone that he will just take a vote, it was unanimous. The stipulation on this bus though was that instead of the seat, or under the seat in front of me, he wanted her on the floor, in the isle, next to me. Weird.
Well it has been almost a month since Steve as crossed over any international borders. Given we had all the paperwork ready to shove in any cocky boarder patrol wussie, we could barely tell when we went from the Czech Republic to Poland.
We did like Kracow or Crakow or Krakow, whatever! They spell it every way possible for some reason. Though at this point it is getting colder, we say a huge drop in the amount of other dogs walking around town. Could be the culture, but it could also be like in Germany where you have to pay a fairly large tax for your dog every year!! You know we would not have that in the Ole US of A! But I still have not had one problem bring her in to any Bar/pub/Restaurant yet. But it could also just be that she is to damn cute to harrass! I tell people she is six and they still she looks like a puppy. A closer inspection you can see the years on Steve, mainly the whitening of hair on her head and back.
From Krakow we went to Warsaw, which was a huge pain, in other peoples asses, because I got a seat! Here They have no problem selling far to many seats than are actually in the train. It was the weekend after their Independence day, our Veterans day, both on the anniversary of the end of WWI, so there was many more people than there usually is. First we had to juggle which platform the train was coming with 100’s of other people who all want to get on this train, but it was late like 45 mins. When the train came it did not slow down on the part all the people were standing, and fastly over took them (and us) to the far far side of this long platform. So now there is a MOB of people all trying to run and catch the train, and then all fit into a few doors! It was havoc. But we found a fairly empty cabin, opened the window and tossed Steve in to save us a seat. I also put in some luggage. But it still impossible to get in the train using the DANG DOORS! There are so many people that there is some sort of stand still. So I had to get in the same way Steve did!! Once the train got going there people had just hunkered down in all the hallways and walkways! There were so many extra people that ticket checker guy wasn’t able to get through to check Anyone’s tickets at all.
Now we are in Warsaw planning our next move to Lithuania
Well Nov. 1st marks our one month mark,or 1/3 of our trip. From Czech we visited Slovakia and Austria. Here are Steve’s fav pics, respectivly:
Also a variety of cities in Czech. We were welcomed everywhere we went. I even found a nice apartment to rent in Prague. I can tell she as really enjoyed laying around all day, sleeping in the sun. We went to many farmers markets and one huge flea market and found her a pretty fancy jacket for when it gets reallly cold.
We had a great time walking all over old town Prague for a couple days. Its such a beautiful area with many different awesome buildings every where. There are so many eye catching landmarks and interesting buildings its hard to not now where you are, even if you are hammered. There is no way you can miss a Dancing house or that crazy clock even if you have been given beer enemas all day! One thing I noticed that while Steve was touring Prague, Prague was sightseeing Steve. Several people took pictures, and as I reviewed the pictures I took of Steve you can see people in the background taking the same picture as I am. For example you can see it in the picture above where Steve is Pulling the pirates parrot on my shoulder, there is a obvious tourist taking advantage of the shot.
Well we all got here in one piece, taking Steve through customs was a BREEZE! Not to mention I am pretty sure I could have walked right past those custom guys, sitting behind their desk not paying attention. I was real surprise that I had to be like, is there were I go if I have “Something to Claim”, then all they did was right a little bit of information on a blank piece of paper they took out of the Printer.
So we have done a little bit of touring, saw some of the major sites, and even did Karaoke last night at the “Jet Club”. For some reason they had no SUBLIME music to sing to, which is always my bag. So I just did a poor job at some Beatles songs and Hotel California by the Eagles.