What: Hamsun plaque

Where: Harstad Sparebank, Rikard Kaarbøsplass 2, 9405 Harstad, Norway

Here it is: Take Hurtigruten, the coastal steamer, in Bergen (preferably M/S Trollfjord!). When she anchors in Harstad you have enough time to walk to the nearest roundabout, pass the statue of Rikard Kaarbø, walk up the Rikard Kaarbøs gate and have a look at the Hamsun plaque on the bank wall. Then you continue with the coastal steamer to Tromsø, where you try dog-sleighing, you visit the North Cape if it is not too icy and you remember to visit the memorial for the Soviet liberation army in Kirkenes!

06:45 am, a day in January. Harstad, the coastal steamer "M/S Trollfjord" lies at the quay. Everybody is happy: Halvard, Hedvig and the rockband. Hamsun revisited!

But as usual it was not easy to find peace to write nor to start writing in the first place, numerous letters on the subject tell stories. Here from Harstad Knut Hamsun writes home to Marie on February 11th 1915: "Yesterday evening it was as though a small light arose within me and I was able to start properly. But the devil incarnate who lives just above my head got out of bed at half six also today and made my brain foggy. I will have to try again tonight.."

© Kirsten Hedvig Rasmussen www.hamsun.at