Well, as they say – that’s a wrap. We are safely across Greenland, in the small town of Tasiilaq, having completed the most incredible adventure!
This land of 55k people don’t just survive, but actually thrive, in a harsh, desolate, unparalleled beautiful environment. Salo was telling us about narwhal (a medium sized whale) fishing, in the traditional way (as is the norm here) in a kayak. He had spent the morning with patience, silently hunting the narwhal. When he finally spied it, he drew back and threw his spear piercing the animal. Unfortunately, somehow the rope was tangled and still attached to his kayak. The narwhal dove deep into the ocean taking Salo and his kayak with him. The rope broke releasing Salo – who saw some bubbles and light and kicked up to it, barely conscious. His family were in kayaks behind him and were able to drag him out of the water. His kayak popped up, undamaged and he went right back to the task at hand and caught that narwhal later that same day. And that exemplifies life in Greenland. It is about being one with the land, the weather, and the environment, accepting your part in it with patience and resilience, and taking it as it comes. Something I will try to take with me from this trip.
We do these testyourlimits trips to remember the possible. Please register to be a donor (www.beadonor.ca) – transplantation is an unparalleled opportunity for those dying from organ failure. I keep Matt Antolin in my thoughts each trip – young Matt wanted to do a TYL adventure but died from heart failure while waiting for a heart transplant.
By far, Dale and I agree this 8th TYL trip was the toughest ever, from 100mph winds, -35 temperatures, zero visibility, blizzard conditions and long ski days – teamwork prevailed as is often the case in life. As always, I can’t thank my team back home enough for making it possible for me to do these trips. As transplant ambassadors go, there can be no finer example than Dale – almost 20 years post heart transplant, and continually scheming about the future…..
Where will TYL go next? I don’t know, but I can say that it feels to me like we are just starting to gain momentum…….mmmmmm…….