Tuesday 24 December 2013


At breakfast time we were in calmer waters as we approached the east side of South Georgia Island. The Island was not visible due to fog and light snow conditions. However by mid-day when we anchored in the King Edward Cove the weather cleared and we could see abandoned whaling station at Grytviken and the white museum building.

Our landing point was close to the Grytviken cemetery. The most noted person buried there is the explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton. Others buried there were sealers and whalers,
including the father of one of our Norwegian passengers. The most recent internment is an Argentine sailor from the 1982 conflict.
Many of us attended a service at the Whalers church. This service was organized by Norwegian organization: OYAs-Venner -the Friends of the Island, South Georgia. The church building was pre-fabricated in Norway at the request of Carl Anton Larsen who founded the whaling station at Grytviken. Reassembled in Grytviken, the church was dedicated on Christmas day 1913. Today an additional service was held, a wedding, Olav Orheim and Grethe Sofie Bratlie exchanged vows, and celebrated with a reception once we returned to the FRAM. 
Onboard the FRAM we all gathered in the Observation lounge, where out Captain Arild Harvik held non-denominational reading of the true meaning of Christmas. We are 360 people onboard from 20 nationalities and we managed to sing Christmas carols simultaneously in 3 languages English, German and Norwegian.

Shortly afterward we gathered in our restaurant for a never ending buffet of holiday dinner delights. We all ate until we could hold no more. The day closed with an appearance from Santa Claus in the observation lounge.