‘Tis the Holiday Season

… And by “holiday” I mean “vacation” 🙂

The Europeans have this amazing thing where they get something like six weeks of paid vacation, which of course sounds astronomical to the average American ear!  This is a custom we really ought to try to adopt in the United States!

Where is everyone going on his/her holiday?  Well, it seems like most do a domestic trip (either up to the Disko Bay area (Ilulissat) or to South Greenland) and at least one international trip.  It seems that everyone goes back to Denmark to see family and friends, to go to their summer home, etc. and then some also do a longer-haul trip.

It is a little curious to me, though, why people would go away from Greenland in the summertime – a time when it is so beautiful here!  Yes, the snow and winter can be very beautiful as well, but one would think residents would want to stay to experience some of the warmer weather!  The warm season is only but so long, and to spend almost half of it away seems counter-intuitive.  Why leave it?  Why not take holiday in the wintertime to escape the cold and darkness a little bit?  But maybe that is just my biased perspective of a newcomer who wants to make the most of every minute in Greenland – for Greenlanders it probably just feels like same old same old after a while… this is mundane for them; summer will still be here when they get back, and the next year, and the year after that.

Speaking of holidays, practically everyone in my immediate life here is going on holiday in the next month, leaving me feeling quite stranded here in Greenland!  I should preface this by saying that I, too, am getting to go on a trip – I would call it a holiday because I am getting the amazing opportunity to see another part of Greenland, but truth be told, I will be working the whole time!  I will be going to the Disko Bay area to help film a food-travel television documentary as well as to conduct visitor interviews – two nights in Ilulissat, followed by two nights in Uummannaq, then one night each at Eqi Ice Camp and Rode Bay, then ending with five nights back in Ilulissat!  I am so excited for this trip but it is a little bittersweet, also, what with all the holiday departures.

Today feels like it is the last “normal” day (as I know it so far) that I will have in Greenland until August!  I am leaving for this Disko Bay trip tomorrow and will not return until the first of July.  In that time, Aviaja (my host sister) will have already left for summer holiday until the middle of August!  And one week after I get back, I will be house-sitting for a friend of my supervisor, so I won’t see Pia & Ulrik that much before they go on holiday until the middle of August!  The cherry on top is that my supervisor, Anders, will also leave for holiday before I return and will be gone until the middle of August!  Not to mention, other people in the office will be gone for a few weeks here and there, so I feel like everyone that I possibly know in this town (except for Sharon) will be gone!  I guess that’s a Greenland summer for you…

Look out for my next blog posts – they’ll be from beautiful Disko Bay!

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