The dilemma between the wish to stay updated and the wish to tell you about everything when there is a lack of time

October 31, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments

Now and then I do some travels for longer periods and I always think I will have a lot of time for writing on my blog posts. I have this urge to tell the world about what I experience and what I think you should do too. That is of course not true, the "have a lot of time for writing" I mean. I always need more hours, and since I want to give you some of the longer stories from time to time but also try to be updated and not like now, two weeks late, I have to compromise with myself. To slow down on experiences is not an option. ;)

So, I need to write less when I do but try to update more often. What do you think about that? My original thought for this blog was to keep it as some kind of diary to myself and my readers, not for longer stories. Might be a good idea to stick to. More text or more often?

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Salton Sea

October 29, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments


14-15 Oktober
The heat surprised me even if I expected it to be warm. Below sea level and more flat than I could imagine I saw myself heading forward with my little equipage and I started to push my board. The asphalt was rough and I couldn't find the speed until I had pushed for a while. As soon as I took my foot back on the board the wheels stopped. My muscles were sored but kept on struggeling to make a difference between moving and not moving. I won. Not too many miles later Daniel had found a campground at Mecca Beach State Recreation Area were I could have a nice shower, wash my clothes and watch Salton Sea with its birdlife among all the pulverized bones of dead fish that the shoreline actually contains of.

We had another early night. When it is dark around 7 pm there isn't much time for enterteinment. On the other side, the sun will unmerciful wake you up around 6.30 am every morning and for the first time since I was a child (if even then) I felt an honest desire for sleep in early evenings.

Started in the morning the next day. My legs were tired so I didn't expect myself to do many miles but even if the asphalt was killing my body I had the energy and kept on pushing. Never thought I could make it to where I had my next pin on the map, Bombay Beach but all of a sudden, not even to many hours from when I left Mecca Beach in the morning, I was there. Tried to text Daniel but my cellphone didn't agree with me so I just put my trailer with all my reflective gear next to the road. I guess he saw it because an hour or so later we had a nice little meal at the bar Ski In in Bombay Beach. Me, eager to go further down to the water where I had heard about abandoned recreation areas and the smell of rotten fish.







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Hidden Valley and a freezing night

October 28, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments



13-14 October
Joshua Tree National Park included a lot of hiking and surrounded of the golden boulders and the mighty Joshua Trees which, I guess, have given the park its name, I couldn't get rid of the feeling of being such a small woman on earth. When the sun was setting and the boulders where even more golden we found a spot at the campground for one tent and one hammock in Hidden Valley. Hanging between two rocks, hearing the coyotes snooping around among the camper's tents and trying to warm myself up under my sleeping bag I could here a car door slamming. Our neighbour's hammock had fallen down and her decision to sleep in the car was probably keeping her more warm than me and Daniel outside. It was a freezing night.



The "car sleeping" neighbour introduced herself as Nikki, and while she took some mats out from the back of her car she asked me if I wanted to join her yoga practice. Said and done. Never tried it before and my stiff joints tried to do there best as Nikki instructed me to "reach for the sun" and do quite impossible exercises. My body would suffer from it a couple of days ahead but right then the yoga moment, the environment and the early morning sun made me fall in love with Hidden Valley in Joshua Tree National Park.



When the car started to go downhill I imagined myself skating down those steep hills that never ended. We drove and drove, I think hours passed and it was still descending, quite steep. I didn't find myself happy with the fact that I wasn't allowed into the park with my longboard a couple of days ago but I was seriously starting to doubt my own decisions regarding to skate there. I couldn't have done it within those days I calculated. My water woud have run out. I was happy for my friendship with Daniel and his decision to go back with his car to Joshua Tree. Finally we reached Mecca, the city where I was going back to my longboard again.

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Twentynine Palms and going back to Joshua Tree

October 21, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments


12-13 October
Leslie took a ride with me into the Joshua Tree Nationel Park as I wasn't allowed to skate there and after a really nice drive through the upper parts of the park she dropped me off with my baggage. A curious little chinese man observed me closely for about 30 minutes before he kindly tried to help me with my trailer setting. The ride was short, it ended up in a bar where I assumed they would have internet. Sunday afternoon in that little town, all drunken people trying to help me out. I realized that I needed more time and skills to go around that huge national park skating. It all ended up with me, planning to take one of the few morning buses back to Palm Springs, change bus and hop off just below the park. Found a cheap motel where I actually bargained for a while and the words "then I guess I have to go wild camping" gave me the even cheaper price.

Checking my e-mails gave me a chance to see that Daniel never went to Joshua Tree as he would and since he still was "off work" he told me he would love to go there. I had a good night sleep and started my skating early next day. The desert's uphills was killing my legs and the sun had started to heat up the unshaded roads even if the hour hadn't left "morning time" yet.

The first long uphill took me as long as half an hour to climb, I would probably be faster walking but the way I had my backpack fastened on my trailer made it impossible. Finally up there one of the longest downhills I have faced appeared to me. Scared me. I started slowly but was speeding up at once. Tried my soles to brake and almost did my first longboard crash. Traffic was heavy and a family with their house on the other side of the road was encouraging me to continue. Waving and calling upon me. All these sounds. I took a deep breath and challenged myself to go, to feel the speed and enjoy it. My board felt a little bit unstable for a while but once I let go of that feeling and saw that no crossing traffic could be in my way I felt free. Smiling.

Next uphill was as strenuous but still, I was on my way and very happy to be. Daniel where faster than me and before I reached Joshua Tree where we where supposed to meet he picked me up with his car. Had some cowboy breakfast like the day before at Crossroads Cafe and then entered the park.

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Desert festival in Joshua Tree

October 18, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments

10-12 Oct

Finding the music festival was harder than I thought. It might have been because of my strong conviction it was held inside the Joshua Tree National Park instead of several miles north of the city of Joshua Tree and Daniel, my friend and driver, stubbornly claimed that Sunrise Rd was the place to be. Both of us were wrong.


Well, when we finally found out where to go we stopped the car a few miles down the road, got my longboard and trailer ready for the start of my skating trip and off I went. It was fun and cars stopped to ask me where I was going and wished me good luck. All the same when I arrived, a lot of attention to me and my "thing". Not used to that but I learned that being a, not very young, woman with a strange looking longboard trailer as my company helps me to get new friends easily.

My lovely neighbours Donna and Tom with their huge tent setting accompanied with, always smiling, Leslie with less "American style" camping equipment made my weekend joyful and with better company than anyone can wish for.






Alternative music, a lot of "hippie moments" with loving and colorful scarfs and outfits, the smell of weed all over the place and a handful of band so good that all my soul danced of happiness. What more can a girl ask for!?


An early Sunday moorning, painful hips from the almost non exsisting sleeping pad and a ride into the center of Joshua Tree for some excellent breakfast at Crossroads Cafe. Then, Leslie gave me a ride to the entrence of the National Park where we all thought were the place where to start my lonboard trip for real. Ok, we were all wrong.

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Ground camping with a hammock and expecting to have the moon in your eye

October 10, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments


After a nice afternoon in Palm Springs, the green oasis in the desert, we simply have to face the fact that the car is no longer with us, the earlier parking lot now consists of some kind of food stall and the Chrystler is towed away. The local police officer kindly tell us where we can have it back and after a walk we are on the road again, with less money.

Delayed, we start to chase a campground before the sun will set and after trying to charm the two men at the Korean Methodist Church, asking for a backyard settle but returning a friendly but determined no, we slide in to the gravel of the desert. Can't rely on the men of god I suppose, at least not the Korean ones. The siluettes of the mountains in the background is getting darker when we find the spot where to spend the night. The wind starts blowing at the same time as sun sets and my first try to fasten the hammock to the ground, because of the lack of trees, is tough. The ground is solid and the wind is trying to steal the equipment and only with a little help from Daniel and a few rocks I finally succeed.

The time is hardly more than 7 pm but the darkness doesn't allow us to do more than have a moment with the starry sky and do some small talking. We close the zippers, burst out of laughter together when the wind makes a deafening sound in each canvas. Cars are passing on the road, I guess the night hasn't come to non campers yet.

I see the stars through my bug net, can't sleep and even if the wind is warm it feels like I have to protect myself from it. I spread my sleeping bag out and use it as a quilt on cold spots. Daniel almost whisper, "Wow, look at the moon Sofia". I turn my head and the horizon grow a beautiful, almost red, moon. I have the feeling that the wind will slow down but the moonlight will keep me awake when rising in the sky. I hear the coytotes howl in the night, getting close to us, curious. Sleep is hard to find and I am almost scared to face the morning when I will hit the road by myself, with my longboard, going to Joshua Tree and hopefully participate in the desert festival wich takes place there.

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The woods of Norway and to wake up with the rooster in East L.A.

October 07, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments



Early morning number two. The rooster wakes me up again with his cocky crow. I guess you can call it jetlag, I am surprised I'm not more disturbed by the cackle and the fact that I actually wake up with that countryside feeling is remarkable in one of the biggest cities in the United States.



I left Sweden for a couple of days with my niece, her mum and also some friends of hers. One night in the village or Røa, close to Oslo, then out to the woods of Enebakk. The perfect way to leave, bit by bit. First, happy and relaxed children playing with each other despite the age difference and adults chit chatting with each other. Then birds and trees fall asleep and the silence of the wood is so distinct it almost has a sound of its own. Scandinavian nature.

Daniel doesn't see me at first, I try to catch his attention and finally he waves back through the crowd of travellers arriving at Los Angeles with me. There! My baggage, which carries a longboard box, slips through the clumsy cart you are offered at the airport but finally we reach the car and start the long ride through Los Angeles to reach the eastern area where Daniel has found a small but cosy home.



When the rooster finally decided to be silent we get up and I explain the importance of coffee in the morning to Daniel. Starbucks is my savior and with new strength we do some errands and then fancy Beverly Hills and Santa Monica Boulevard attracts the attencion for a while. Not that any shopping could be done with those prices but still fun to stroll the exclusive avenue. The car take us to the beach I waited for. Venice. We are surprised about the fog and the sea sounds dangerous with strong waves crashing onto the beach. The warning signal for boats navigating in the fog is alarming and when finally the sun is breaking throug again a ghost like feeling is left behind for a while. The Ferris wheel and rollercoaster of Santa Monica Pier are the last to be obscured before the fog rolls out to sea again.

We stroll the pier, catching sight of a seal and then the streets of Santa Monica is alive in front of us. Earlier memories of Anders, my man back home, trying to have a smoke here and reprimended by a police officer a couple of years ago put a smile on me. You don't smoke in public in Santa Monica.



Back for a beautiful sunset at the beach and excellent food with great company in Venice is the perfect end to my first day this time in Los Angeles.

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The world of Goodbyes

October 03, 2014 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments


Leaving Gothenburg behind, and my last goodbye for today. My third one. I'm now heading towards Oslo to visit my niece and her mum's place. Spending some quality time with them in Norway is the perfect start for me before the quite bigger L.A. on Sunday.

Last night wasn't exactly an early one. Yesterday I spent time with my own mum and saying goodbye was pretty hard. Couldn't help myself, I guess my eyes betrayed me filled with tears. Mum will always be mum, that's it. I stayed later than I was supposed to and then spent more time with my little sister, whom I will miss so much. Then a long phone call to Anders, my boyfriend, all together resulting in my packing time was hours less than I had planned and when I closed my eyes clock said 4.30 am. Almost 3 hours before my alarm clock rang for an early goodbye moment with little sister. Strange feeling when she left her apartment and I stayed for a few hours more...

Dad, at the bus station in my home town Borås, and one hour later another goodbye to my dear aunt in Gothenburg. Will miss you both a lot as well and if you read this, please stay healthy and take care.

Well, my eyes are soon to be shut down for some napping before the border controll between Sweden and Norway. For now, goodbye. ;)

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