'Teacher Training Day'. I remember when we were kids, these 'extra' days of holiday were rare and not to be wasted. Ordinary half-term days were spent watching BMX Beat then riding four abreast down the road to the local BMX track but 'Teacher Training Day' required a special trip to the neighbouring town's track. If Mum couldn't take us then we'd ride in the guard/post carriage of the slam-door stopper train service, back when we used to have a working 'integrated transport strategy' but didn't know it. The seven miles distance between the two BMX tracks seemed much further in my geographically-warped childhood memory.
These days 'Teacher Training Day' means that while M has to go into work, us mere mortal assistants have an extra day off and with Bergen enjoying some spectacular warm sunny weather it was time to dust off the trail runners and swap the snow shovel for sun cream. With no snow visible from the city I decided to see how far I could get to the summit of Haugavarden on the Storfjellet plateau. It was nice to wear nothing but a base-layer, techy trackies and trainers. Plenty of people about enjoying the sunshine, shorts and sunglasses very much evident. Even the water that drained in and out my shoes wasn't cold. I did find snow, right on the top of the plateau, in the northern facing shelter of rocks and rises, but the main trails were dry and firm. At the summit (670m) I punched my Topptrim card and swapped two of my mini Mars bars for a pack of gum. I like this unwritten gift system, prevalent in hyttes and the metal summit boxes. I remember finding a miniature of Jagermeister once. There was plenty of flat, soft ground too I noticed. Plans were penciled in for another time. After a quick lunch stop of left-over pizza and chocolate cake it was back around the plateau and down the reservoir ridge, which flashed by in minutes it seemed, memories of labouring up it for over an hour in the winter playing through my head. No doubt we'll have plenty of less than perfect weather in the future but right now it seems weird that we've moved from Winter straight into Summer, without passing Go, do not collect £200.