22 May 2007
17th of May, Constitutions day in Norway
As there is now a Norwegian member of the crew, it was decided that the Norwegian national day should be a holiday on Tara, of course with a big celebration.
Before lunch there were some usual daily tasks to be done. But after lunch it was time for the traditional parade, where people, mostly children, walk down the main street of town with the Norwegian flags and great the spectators that you know. So on Tara we did as we do in Norway, walking between the outhouse and the ship, waving to our imaginary friends. While you walk you yell: “Hipp Hipp Hurra!!!” and then three times “Hurra!!”. The parade ended with a flag ceremony and the national anthem. This led us into another tradition, playing games. After a hard fought battle including ice pick javelin, lead long jump, frozen fish tossing, Frisbee and sled racing, Timo was crowned champion, Sam second and Grant third. After taking a sauna and quick dip to sooth our aching bodies we enjoyed prize giving followed by a good dinner with aquavit, a traditional alcohol from Norway.
For me (the Norwegian) it was a very special celebration of the national day. And probably we had the Northernmost 17th of May Parade ever!