Saturday, 19 October 2013

Getting used to our home

Now, imagine you go on holiday in a hotel and you decide not to leave a single time for a whole vacation. Being happy or feeling confined then depends entirely how much you like the premises, what state of mind they bring you into.
Same here, FRAM has a lot to offer, but of course you should know it. So the first two full hours of the day were spent on an extended guided tour through all the decks of our 114m long vessel. And there is so much to see: From the expedition/car deck with its multitude of Polar Cirkel Boats and expedition gear into the rather unknown recesses of the ships bowels, from the incinerator room to the engine workshop, the electronics department, the huge array of fridges to even those hidden spots like the deep store which is only accessible through a very heavy hatch that looks like the entrance to a submarine.
Even those who have been many a time with us were awed and came away with a brand-new feeling for the ship.
Well, and certainly the key difference between a crossing and a hotel stay is the fact that we are moving. I'm not referring here to the gentle rocking that is sooooo soothing and inducing a meditational state of mind, but rather to our barely perceptible progress on the map: Already this morning we were at 25 degrees North, so the countdown to the equator has certainly begun. Works are being carried out at a slightly slower pace, with no landings there is even the chance for a short break here and there.
And although if there is just water all around us, there are things happening, be it a school of dolphins suddenly popping up next to the vessel, or the slow encounter with the occasional freight liner.

Enough to talk about at tea time, where there is a casual meeting upstairs with cookies and hot drinks and friendly chatter.
And it's getting warmer, notably. The evening is so gentle that we move dinner outside, into the sunset. Now, that is something!
And all of a sudden the first full sea day is over...