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Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Wendy's time on Traversay III

Norway ferry

A May to remember.  A place far, far from home. We are officially in the Arctic now.  We have navigated and tolerated and underestimated the power and the brilliance of nature yet again.

Today, I woke up in the Lofoten Islands.  I talked about this trip and imagined how it would be and still I was blown away by the landscapes and seascapes.  It was obvious that photographs would not do justice to the overall experience.
From the point of view of somebody with little boating experience, there was a mix of anticipation and anxiety all along.  But before I knew it, there was much to do and much to learn and far too much to focus on to permit emotional reflections.  If I was going to be any assistance to Mary Anne and Larry, I would have to learn to tie marine knots quickly and absorb the process of docking and be up and running with some of the day-to-day terminology in a jiffy.
I thought the howling williwaws we experienced while docked in Øye at the end of Norangsfjord were the most frightening thing I had ever experienced but this was not the case.  After leaving Molde the game changed drastically - we were heading for the open sea.  It was a first for me and I was not sure entirely what to expect, of the sea that is.  The three of us were on a 3 hour watch shift so that at no time was our speedy vessel left without constant observation and inspections of the horizon for other vessels or land masses.  It wasn't long before my anxiety was replaced by an overwhelming sense of peace.  When the winds were high and the waves contrary, everything on board was like clockwork.  When the wind died down and there were few sea swells, I would enjoy the birds of prey that fished around the boat and seemed to follow us mile for mile.

Union Hotel,  Øye
I don't quite remember sleeping as well anywhere else.  Being rocked gently to sleep by the sea must be second only to a gentle lullaby for a baby in the arms of its mother.  About half way between Molde and the Lofoten Islands, I stood watch outside and realized that there was no land in sight, just a moody sky that was beautifully decorated with a skirt of clouds just above the horizon.  I did a three-sixty to be sure to capture it all.  It was stunning.  The sun did not seem to set, or rise for that matter.  But the fiery orange ball lit up the wave crests ahead of us.  I bobbed up and down from my watchman's perch and enjoyed every second of this.  This was the thrill I hadn't expected and could not have imagined.





Overnight anchorage near Molde


This is the type of thing that makes you want more.














Words and photos by Wendy Lewis - Sørvågen, Lofoten Islands

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