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Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Some Like it COLD – A visit to North Pole

Here is a Page from Odette Ricasa's travel Journal 
May 13 - Am now in Svalbard, an archipelago in the Arctic Circle.
We are about  800 miles to the myth called North Pole. I flew from OsloNorway. 

It  is 9 degrees outside brrr.rr..rr but I keep walking on the streets to keep body heat..
I am wrapped in thick clothes, 4 pants 4 undershirts, 2 sweaters, a heavy jacket, wool scarf, hard and heavy to walk ;). the cold is ok  It is the violent gusts of wind that  makes my nose numb but I am surviving.

woke up at 1:00 AM, the sun was as brilliant.  Twenty four hours of day light, no dark nights. The sun never set during my entire trip.  I had to use an eye mask to sleep.  This must be the reason the Arctic regions is drawn on the globe in color white. 

Serenity moved along the long white ragged lines that lead to the coal mines, the snow whispering and hushing, making little triangles of white, seething a little when the wind blew them on the ground, getting deeper and deeper as if everything has been insulated by snow. The fierce sun and snow smooth as cake frosting covered the roofs, the streets and the mountains.

A secret of snow now, between the world and me.

The presence of snow sounds clearer here at the North Pole a few steps beyond speech, beyond thought.  Mist of snow softly and steadily float in the bright sunlight turning and pausing.  With one hand lifted to shade my eyes against the snow sun. I felt at ease and peace, the whole world a vast moving screen of snow. 

It is the time for midnight sun.  It really gets my adrenaline rushing and my not so young heart pumping. Sometimes I think I am invincible, but life shows me I am not.  I took clumsy steps, my boots down the powdered snow, noiseless dropped down like a bird, then Oouuchh!!!    I slid on the snow and fell flat on my butt J.

Our taxi driver’s name  is Som.  He is from Iran.   He has lived here for fourteen years, loves it and would not live anywhere else in the world.   His eye swim very brightly like little cat. He explains the seven coal mines, Santa Claus sleeps in one of the coal mines..he..he..he and an educational surprise = the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a facility that preserves a wide variety of plant seeds around the world in an underground cavern with DNA testing to prevent plants from  being extinct. We learn something new everyday.

It is the celebration of National Flag Day for Norway.  Locals proudly parade in their brightly hand embroidered traditional costumes.  Waving the Norwegian flag, they sung, cheered and hooted with the band. 

There are about 30 Filipinos who live here. They invited me for noodles and rice cake. Nice! I was surprised to find them here. Seems like everywhere I go I meet Filipinos. They are also surprised to find me here, asking why I am here. I told them I am a writer J.

Mode of transportation: snow mobiles or dog sled :).

A private pristine setting the most majestic sight of mother nature that dazzles the senses step foot on a glacier travel by snow mobile and sports by dog sledding, the maddest, most marvelous site.

I am sitting by the window of the Spitsbergen Guest House filled with admiration. For the midnight song seem to feel the snow powder, soundless except for the cruel wind that blows through the Flower Valley, Iced fjords, Polygonson Kvndehukslette, Braggerhalveya, more and more glaciers. .

One thing I am waiting for … the sign of a WHITE polar bear

Odette Ricasa - has traveled to 232 countries.  She is heading a travel club that meets every month at different restaurants.  
author of FOUR (4) books search: RICASA
google search: Odette Ricasa - flyer:

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