Exercise Midnight Sun - Greenland 2008

Base Camp News


20th July 2008


Well here I am again, skiving out of the evening cooking.  Stu and Kev asked if I would like to help prepare this evening’s meal, but alas I’ve got the blog to write - it’s a dirty job but somebody has to do it.  We will be eating frankfurter type sausages, though the meat is from an unidentified source, new potatoes (unbelievable that you can get them in west Greenland), onions and carrots.  There is a bit of a domestic brewing between the two highly strung chefs; it’s all to do with whether the carrots should cut in juliennes or florets? Oh the artistic temperament can be a testing thing.


Last night went on forever mainly because I had forgotten to pack my eye shades to sleep in.  The hint should have been in the name of the Expedition - ‘Midnight Sun’.  The sun finally dipped below the horizon during the early hours only to reappear again a few minutes later, making sleep pretty scarce!  We are sleeping on the floor in Kai’s office which is pleasant enough and is free of charge; it also comes along with birds in the rafters and what sound like mice under the floor boards.  Hopefully I’ll sleep better tonight.


This morning it was down to the serious business of tying up the movement plan in detail; surprisingly all went very well and within an hour or so we had virtually everything arranged.  The proof will be in the pudding but so far so good.  A meeting with the Peter Biilmann, the director of the local radio and TV station, was arranged for 1300hrs.  I started to get a little stressed when 1300 came and went and there was no sign of Kai (I JHW with Peter Biilmannneeded him for the translation) then of course I remembered it was 1300hrs Greenlandic style.  Kai turned up a short while later and the only people showing any concern at his tardy arrival were the 3 Brits.  The meeting went very well; the locals are very interested in us.  They are keen to find out who we are, why we are here and what we are planning to do.  A short initial piece about the Expedition will appear in the Maniitsoq press on Fri next week. (image: JHW with Peter Biilmann local TV & Radio director)


As for the remainder of the meetings with the other local key players, they will have to wait until Monday.  It’s Saturday, the weather is fantastic and everybody is out in their huts in the wilds, fishing and hunting.  Tomorrow the forecast is equally as good, so as far as the next meetings are concerned, all will have to wait until Monday!

We took a break this afternoon and went for a walk to west coast of Maniitsoq Island.  The walk started in a typical Greenland commune way, by the ascent of one of the ubiquitous wooden staircases.  After that it was the pure delight of padding up and down sun warmed rose quartz granite, with the western islets poking out of a near mirror calm Atlantic, a rather agreeable way to finish the day.


By the way, the evening meal was great and the carrots were rustic juliennes; I did the washing up.


John HW