San Francisco, California
July 6, 2013
When I was a kid, we had a cathode-ray tube TV. Sometimes, when the antenna signal got deflected, or the vert and horiz were messed up, all the people and images on the screen would suddenly spasm into several versions of themselves, or the picture would start flipping top-to-bottom on the screen, or bend and zig-zag. That’s sort of how I feel right now, returning from Svalbard.
It’s not so much a physical sensation as an emotional one… though re-adjusting to a nine-hour time difference is probably part of it. I know my body will figure out how to match the cues from nature soon enough. I’m not so sure about my images on the screen, though.
When I close my eyes, here is what I see:
And when I open them, I see this:
For the next few weeks, I’m hoping to tweak the dials and bring these two visions into alignment. There are lots of stories from the journey I will try to do justice to here in coming posts, including adventures with our understatedly-badass guides, Theres, Sara, and Åshild; the ghosts of Pyramiden; flying snails; it is not 4pm if there’s no cake; the ass-contest; if it’s dead, drag it back to Kate; and the convivial wrath of Captain Jo.
Much of what I did on the journey was to record audio, which I will be putting together into a larger project that will be available for download in a few months. My ultimate goal is to offer a journey to the arctic in sound, that anyone can take by listening. Why sound and not video and photos? I’ll devote an entire post to that in the upcoming weeks…