Blog #4: Ny-Ålesund is bustling and alive

Life up here in Ny-Ålesund is simple, comfortable and rich. Although there is not a lot in terms of consumption and culture, the social contacts and the impressive nature are all over the place. Time goes by fast, scientists and other visitors come and go continuously. It is a repeating cycle of getting to know each other, using the common time optimally and saying goodbye. As a permanent inhabitant of Ny-Ålesund you sometimes have to step back. The scientists and visitors are here just for a short time and want to get everything out of their stay. They work their asses off and in every spare moment you find them doing outdoor or social activities. It is easy to get suck into this enthusiasm on a place where everybody knows everybody and where the sun never sets. Sleep is a precious and rare thing, something for which you actively must take your time. Ny-Ålesund is bustling and alive.

On the moment of writing, there is a week of breathing. Relatively few people are around in the village. The first bigger wave of visitors is over. It is like a calm after a little storm, but before a hurricane. June, July and August form here the high season of polar research. The midnight sun, the higher temperatures and the returning flora and fauna cause the summer to be a beloved time for polar researchers, especially biologists. Since last month, the fjord has filled up with algae, plankton, seals and whales, the sky shows more and more birds and because the snow is now melting, reindeers are more regularly coming to town to enjoy some juicy piece of tundra. Nature causes no day to be the same. Ny-Ålesund is bustling and alive.

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