Another thing that’s very different is the vast distances and the loneliness. In mainland Europe we are used to being close to everything all the time. We are always online and can always reach each other in a short amount of time. We are always available. In Greenland it’s the opposite; The Internet is often bad and in many places there is no Internet or mobile connection at all. And we cannot quickly drive from one city to another. You are where you are, and that’s it. You are always surrounded by the Arctic sea, the mountains and an almost infinite ice cap.
That’s the beauty of it all. You have to respect nature and life in another way than in Denmark, where I grew up. However, if you let go of time – and accept the loneliness and isolation – you suddenly find yourself falling in love with living in the Arctic. And there is so much to love …
Probably the cleanest air in the world
The air up here is so unbelievably clean and cold – the winters last for 6 to 7 months with meters of snow and constant frozen air. Most people think that it must be dark in the winters in Greenland, but the snow and ice light up everything. When it’s dark in Denmark, Germany or Spain, it’s really dark, but up here everything lights up and glows because of the ice and snow. And sometimes, in the early hours of the night, the northern lights flicker over the dark sky – like thin shimmering veils of green and pink breath. It’s like the breath of the sun’s dying light dancing with the soul of the earth.
TRUE TIME Traveling in a drop of water
And that’s not even the most mesmerizing thing about life up here. The best thing is the ice: the real ice, the inland ice – the huge ice cap that covers most of Greenland. The colors of the ice are endless. Sometimes it’s white. Sometimes blue. Sometimes like crystal. Sometimes you just stare at it thinking ‘that’s not possible’. Even more amazing is the age of the ice. It’s not just frozen water; it’s water that has been frozen and solid for more than 100,000 years. When huge lumps of icebergs drift ashore, you can go and hug them and touch them and feel them breathing ice cold on your skin. I often put a bit of the old ice in my mouth and close my eyes as the ice melts. Just to feel time. The water melting in my mouth has not been liquid since before the time of modern man. It’s like being in a time machine; you are traveling through time in each single drop. It’s magic. Just like Greenland: magic.
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