It was all supposed to be very different.
I should idle on Kulusuk island right now after a 5-day trek over a glacier somewhere between Angmagssalik and Sermilik fjords. But one unlucky incident, a knee injury, some walking on crutches and water aerobics have brought me only to Reykjavik.
Stubbornness and Air Iceland will still get me to Greenland. It is a Danish colony that produces fish and ice cubes. Everything else is imported. Ice will soon be in short supply though because the glaciers melt faster than predicted and will raise the sea level about seven meters in the next hundred years or so. Icelandic outlaw Eric the Red was a bigger visionary that his contemporaries gave him credit for. Climate models show that in a hundred years his name describes the island very well and it will then look more like Alaska. Greenlandic permafrost hides awesome quantities of greenhouse gas to help the world in organizing climate change and precious metals to help the locals in arranging an economic bubble.
For learning Greenlandic I found a blog built by someone who was learning the language (http://learngreenlandic.tumblr.com/lessons) that went well with Memrise flash cards. Greenlandic is polysynthetic language that means threading a lot of small pieces in a row which will form an extremely long word used as a sentence. Wikipedia explains this as follows: ‘such as the Yupik word tuntussuqatarniksaitengqiggtuq which means “He had not yet said again that he was going to hunt reindeer." The word consists of the morphemes tuntu-ssur-qatar-ni-ksaite-ngqiggte-uq with the meanings, reindeer-hunt-future-say-negation-again-third.person.singular.indicative; and except for the morpheme tuntu "reindeer", none of the other morphemes can appear in isolation.’ See what I mean. Eskimo-Aleut language family. In addition they use Danish numbers that combine impossible pronunciation with German back-to-front reading and calculation system worse than French.
Guidelines for meeting a polar bear:
- Pretend to be dead. It will be good practice when it happens some moments later (internet)
- Try to relax because lactic acid accumulates in muscles when you’re stressed and it ruins the taste (Koit Raud)