An exhibition in Höfn connected to Vega

Time goes on and now it’s the last semester of our collaborative project Geoheritage. This semester we work with global goal number 7, which deals with affordable and clean energy. The last visit in the project will be to Vaala in Finland in April and all participants are looking forward to meeting again.

Students in FAS started the semester by visiting the art museum in town. There is a co-Nordic exhibition about coexistence people and eider bird and utilization of eider down. This exhibition is in collaboration with Icelandic, Danish and Norwegian artists. The group got a tour and an introduction on the exhibition.  When we visited Norway last semester, we went to the island Vega where there is a long tradition of using down. When the exhibition leaves Höfn, it will next be staged on the island of Vega. It was therefore ideal to start the semester by viewing this exhibition and reminiscing about fun times in Norway.

Now, however, work begins to prepare the trip to Finland and in the next weeks we will learn a lot related to global goal 7 and the importance that as many people as possible know about all the global goals adjust their lifestyle to the goals.

8th of October

We spent the night on the boat Nordlys that runs the regular traffic line Hurtigrutten. The weather wasn’t the best possible and five meters high waves made the boat swing a lot in the open sea. It was impossible to get any sleep at first, but luckily we soon went on our journey along the fjords so the rest of the night we slept like a log.

We woke up at 6 o’clock, packed our things and had some bread and juice for breakfast in our cabins. The boat arrived in Trondheim at 6.30, luckily in time so we caught the 7 o’clock bus to the airport.

The Icelandic group had no problems with check-in or security control, but the Finnish group didn’t even get that far.

The Finnish group tried first self-service check-in, but it failed. On the service desk the officials couldn’t find their names on the passenger list. It was a catastrophe! How could that be possible, because everything had been booked and paid via the travel agency half a year ago. And we also had got the tickets online. After many many phone calls and talks it was found out that something had happened when the whole group was rerouted on the way from Oslo to Trondheim. The official of the airline had forgotten to activate the return tickets of the Finnish group. The travel agency tried to do their best and one very friendly official was of great help.  There were no seats left from Trondheim to any bigger cities at the weekend so the only possibility was to order a charter bus from Trondheim to Vaala, Finland. The Finns never give up and decided to survive 1 200 kilometers and about 16 hours on the bus to get back home during the weekend.

The bus trip through Sweden via Åre and Haparanda went surprisingly fast with a few stops.  We had a late lunch buffet at Krokoms Wärdshus and some shorter breaks. On the way we could admire the scenery and just try to kill time by hanging on the net and listening to music. Nearly all the service stations were closed at night so it was difficult to find any place for toilet stops, but we survived. We arrived in Vaala at about six o’clock in the morning, tired but happy and grateful for the unforgettable Nordplus Junior-week in Norway.

Everything went according to plan for the Icelandic team. Now there were no delays and all schedules were met. It was a tired but extremely happy group that came back to Höfn around 22:30. The group appreciates the days together in Norway and looks forward to the next meeting in April in Vaala next year.

7th of October

Today was our last day at school. The Finnish and Icelandic students needed to say goodbye to their host families. We met at school at 9 and worked on our posters until lunch.

After lunch the students presented their posters and also a picture which they took during the stay in Norway and explain why this picture was chosen. All presentation went well and we can be sure that we all learned a lot during this week.

Sadly, it was time to say goodbye. Some of the Norwegian students needed to go home for the weekend, but some followed the guests to the shopping center and later to Hurtigruten. It is always sad to say goodbye, but we will all meet next spring in Finland, just after a while.

The Finns and Icelanders are now just about starting a long journey home. Hurtigruten will leave soon and we will be in Throndheim tomorrow morning. Both groups have a long trip ahead to their homes.

We will enjoy our last evening together on the Brygge Bistro on floor four eating pizzas.

6th of October

Before lunch we went on our group work on the different themes of the week. We made a draft on the posters that we are going to finish and present on Friday.  After lunch we had an excursion to the nearby shore which was not so far away from the school, but only a ten minute’s walk.

We met the marine biologist Sebastian Strand who guided us together with Bergliot Storruste and Kamilla Pedersen from Trollfjell Geopark. We studied marine biodiversity by collecting living organisms from the shore.

Kamilla prepared some seafood snacks from the collected stuff (algae, kelps, snails, sea shells) with a trangia and those who dared could taste them.

Then we had a delicious seafood dinner at school, prepared by the students of the educational programme Restaurant and Food Processing. The evening was free and most of the students went bowling.

5th of October

After a delightful first night with the host families, we met early at Brønnøysund videregående skole, got some breakfast and went over the assignments of the day.

We started with a visit to Norsk Havbrukssenter and got to know about fish farming and harvesting. It was very interesting to see the process and we got very good information we can use for our posters.

After that visit we went back to the school, got some lunch, and started our group work with the posters we have to do by Friday and present before we leave Brønnøysund that day in the afternoon.

After some group work, we got an early dinner (yes – we have eaten a lot in this trip!) and went by bus to the mountain Torghatten but it is known for its characteristic hole, or natural tunnel, through its center. We decided to take a picture of the whole group. The headmaster of the school walked up with us and took the photo. 😊

After the walk up the mountain the students went back to their host families. This day was excellent, and we were very lucky with the weather.

4th of October

We all woke up relaxed and happy in the morning after a normal long night for a change. The little huts offered us a new and great experience on the island of Vega.  After breakfast at Base Camp Vega we were told about the program of the day.  Our task was to collect and sort out trash from the beach. The organization In the Same Boat informed us on the security on the boat and on the rocky beach as well as gave instructions on the beach cleaning.

We were divided into three groups whose task was to collect trash from different places. The groups were taken by two boats to the island of Søla. The weather was windy and rainy in the morning, but it got better during the day.

Two groups went quite far from the harbor in a quite challenging, rocky terrain and the other groups stayed closer to it. The groups found a lot of trash; plastic, glas and metal. All the trashes were collected to plastic bags. Trashes were then weighed and collected to certain places, where they could be taken away by beach cleaning boats.

When it was time to return back to Base Camp Vega, the engine of the bigger boat didn’t work. We all had to be taken away by a smaller boat which took a much longer time. Luckily all the groups arrived in time for dinner.

After dinner we were taken by bus and ferry to Brönnöysund where the host families were waiting for their guests.

 

3rd of October

Even though we went very late to bed we had to wake up early. The stay in Hotel Thon was very nice and also the breakfast. We needed to be at school at 9:00. We met the principal and also the people who are taking care of us this week.

At 9:45 we left school to the harbor. We needed to take the ferry to the island Vega where we are going to stay today and tomorrow. It was a nice experience for most of us to see this common way to travel in this part of Norway.

When we arrived to Vega we went to Vega World Heritage Center. Some of the Norwegian students live on Vega and this week, where they have guests they have to go to school by boat. And that is a new experience for the guests. We got a brief overview of the combination of nature and the people living here during the centuries. They have been collecting eiderdown on most of the small islands here.
After the lunch break we got a presentation about marine ecosystem and the importance of taking care of the nature.

In the afternoon we went to Vega Base Camp where we are going to sleep. It is a very beautiful surrounding with a great view to the Søla island, where we are going tomorrow. We are going to sleep in a very small huts, they are basically just for the beds. Before dinner was a social activity and the students ran a lot. We got a traditional meal, a lamb stew with vegetables.

In the evening we gave our presentations about our countries and learned a lot about our countries.

 

2nd of October

Our Nordplus Junior-week will officially begin on Monday, but today both the Finnish and Icelandic students travelled from their home countries to Norway. The Finns left at 6 o’clock by bus from Vaala to Oulu airport. The Icelandic had travelled by bus to Keflavik already on Saturday and stayed the night at the hotel.

The whole day was full of delays and mishaps. The Finns’ flight from Helsinki to Oslo was late as well as the Icelandic’s flight from Keflavik to Oslo was over two hours late due to technical problem. After a 110-minute wait and about 6-7 power outages the Icelandair finally took of. They also needed to replace a battery in the plane. 

We were supposed to meet in Oslo and fly together to Trondheim. We did actually, but three hours later and with the other flight. Luckily we got the new flight tickets for free. Because of the delays we missed both the preordered train and the bus from Trondheim to Brönnöysund. Luckily our friends in Brönnöysund organized us a charter bus. Now we are sitting on the bus and heading for Brönnöysund. It will take six hours to get there and we will be in Brönnöysund after two o’clock at night. It will be too late to be accommodated in the host families at that time of the night so we will stay the first night at the hotel.

This day has been very expensive for the project, but let’s hope the Nordplus Junior officials in Stockholm will understand the situation. Most of the  kids were meeting for the first time and it was fun and they are excited to see what the future holds. The students were tired, sweaty but lucky. They got acquainted right away and had fun together. We didn’t let some problems to spoil our first day together but especially Almar was very disappointed because we missed the train. .

Tomorrow morning we will meet our Norwegian friends at school in Brönnöysund. Looking forward to it!

 

 

1st of October

Dear diary.

Today we (Icelanders) started our trip to Keflavík at 13:00 or at 1pm. Laufey and Hafdis dressed up like they were going on summer vacation and not to Norway, which is a cold country, we think, it probably is, ANYWAYS.

On the trip to Keflavík we spotted many sheepsand horses, like somebody come get their animals, it is almost winter. And we also spotted a car in a lake, somebody must be a bad driver, even I a 17 year old can drive better than tourists in Iceland.

Our bus changed drivers like 3 times, I guess they can’t handle our awesomeness. We stopped at KFC in Selfoss to finally get something to eat.

We’re also going the LONGER way to Keflavík, and it’s called the GRINDARVÍK WAY. Our final destination for the day is a hotel near the airport.

That’s all for now. Thank you for reading.

XOXO Students from FAS and teachers. 

On the way to Norway

Tomorrow, a group of students from Iceland leaves for Norway, but they are participants in the project Geoheritage, culture and sustainable communities in rural areas in Finland, Iceland and Norway, which is sponsored by Nordplus Junior.

This is the third and last year of the project and we are working with selected global goals. Since the start of school, the group has been preparing for the trip and will present both the country and the nation as well as participate in project work related to global goal 14, which deals with life in water.

The group flies to Oslo on Sunday morning and where we meet our partner from Finland. From there, we have a long journey to Brønnøysund, but the group should be there by Sunday evening. The next week will then be used for various types of work. We look forward to visit our friends in Norway and spend next week together.

You can follow the group’s travels at https://geoheritage.fas.is/