Thursday 21 June 2012

Greenland National Day!

June 21 was a special day to all on Fram but always a significant day to the Greenlanders as it is Greenland’s national day: 33 years since the introduction of Home Rule; 27 years since the Greenlandic flag first flied proudly on the flag poles around the country; 3 years since Self Governance was inaugurated.

Our landing in Qullissat in the morning, knowing of the importance the abandoned mining town has had for Greenland politically and culturally, fitted well into the value of the day. So did the introduction of a drum and mask dance for our guests in the evening. Both setting the dances into a social and cultural context and the actual performance by Greenlandic mask dancers was a wonderful conclusion of the national day.

The day revealed different sides of ice: the beauty of the ice as we experienced it when we crossed through the icescapes in the Polar Circle boats and the chilling forces of the ice that the captain and his crew had to navigate through.  

And than three  Humpback whales showed up between the ice!

On a slightly less spectacular note – and without contact with ice – was the Expedition Team’s test of the flotation suits outside Qullissat. The test was successful, though and confirmed that the suits are meant for floating!