After a decent Indian food dinner I decided to walk back to my hotel. I stopped at the Royal Palace of Brussels. Then strolled around the Parc de Bruxelles and then past the Chamber of Representatives, which is on the other side of the park.
This Thanksgiving I'm thankful for wild yeast and traditional brewing techniques. I'm at my brewing Graceland: Cantillon Brewery in Brussels, Belgium.
Amsterdam is exceedingly pretty when the sun comes out. Almost makes you forget about the rainy days.
Went to the Vasa Museum today. 390 years ago the Dutch guys built a very pretty - but very terribly engineered - boat. It literally sunk 1000 meters after being launched. They raised it about 50 years ago. They sprayed it with waxy goo (like in your chap stick) for 17 years straight to replace the water and preserve the wood. It's 98% complete.
Snowed about 6"overnight in Stockholm. It's wet snow and got super slick super fast. Pretty, though. Usually I go skiing on my birthday, not this year. Snow will have to suffice
Went on a photo expedition tonight to Monteliusvägen - it's a 500 meter long overlook of the city, a short 20 minute walk from where I'm staying.
This afternoon I took the bus over to the Kaknästornet, a 155 meter tall TV & Radio transmission tower east of Stockholm. You can take an elevator up to the 30th floor and look out over the city. It was a struggle to get there. I first got on the #69 bus going the wrong direction (apparently the buses going in opposite directions passed the exact same bus stop at the same time), and then I totally passed my stop because I was an idiot and was futzing with my phone. Regardless, I made it - buses & trains run ridiculously often in this town.
I went up to the upper observation deck to catch a photo from the outside only to find out that there are these goddamn bars you have to look through. So I went down into the lower observation deck and had to shoot through glass. This excursion was an exercise in patience.
One last night in Abisko to try to catch the #AuroraBorealis. My photography guide told me about a short hike up to a hill just south of town called Stor-Nabben. I scoped it out during the very short day yesterday and decided it was worth a shot tonight. Right now it's cloudy but the starry sky is supposed to slowly reveal itself over the next 4 hours. My fingers are crossed and hopefully I'll be able to capture some magic again tonight.
This is a bucket list sort of an adventure for me. Going 5500 miles away from home to a tiny town of a few hundred, 200 kilometers North of the Arctic Circle. Thankfully the solar wind cooperated a few nights and I was able to achieve something I'd only ever dreamt about.
The only thing I really wish I had was someone to share in these adventures. I'm used to traveling alone but ultimately it's not the way I'd like to live outt the rest of my life. It's tough seeing all these couples sharing these precious moments with each other, knowing that I'm going to be 39 in a few days and I've largely been single my whole life. Then again I think about being dumped on 2 different vacations over the years, and suddenly realize that it's ok to be doing what I want and when I want to.
Just as tonight's Aurora would be the icing on the cake of an already very successful trip, I'll try to remain hopeful that the skies of my own romantic life will clear up and I can find someone to go on future adventures with.
Hello from the Rombak Fjord near Narvik, Norway! Took a sightseeing trip today. My 1st fjord. The water on the shore was so clear but the wind was whipping waves on the water.
I went down to Lake Torneträsk in Abisko, Sweden last night and shot a series of 175 long exposure photos (20 seconds) from 2:30am-3:30am. It was very windy and the aurora was really just sort of the "baseline" variety: dim but noticeable. I took shelter next to a large boxy houseboat-looking thing, set the camera up and started my Intervalometer (that triggers the shutter after a specified number of seconds). I put all the photos together into a another timelapse. The resulting video is nicer-looking than it was to stand out in the howling wind. I love the satellites that pass overhead, including the one at the very end that (presumably) perfectly reflects the sun from the other side of the world.
On the flipside, I was up so late that I caught the livestream of The Infamous @stringdusters, who were playing in Buffalo, NY.