The Fog Came in on Little Cat Feet…

  • Day 8, Voyage of the Vikings 2019
  • Tuesday, Aug. 6, At Sea near Greenland

… with props to Carl Sandburg

The glass-half-empty view of today is a missed port. Or if you want to look at the sunny side, it was a bonus sea day. Actually, sun was the one thing we never saw. I awoke to heavy fog and it barely lifted throughout the day.

Our first stop in Greenland – Paamiut on the southwest coast – was fogged in. We sailed in fog much of yesterday as we crossed the Labrador Sea. Once we reached the inlet for Paamiut, I could see just far enough to make out a few rock outcroppings.

Capt. Vaartjes delivered the bad news early, but said he would wait to see if the fog lifted. At one point it did lighten, and he sent a tender up the inlet to check conditions. Alas, the fog set in again. So we raised the tender, took off and sailed slowly toward tomorrow’s port.

When the fog was heavy, the ship’s foghorn blew a prolonged blast every two minutes. Even in the Crow’s Nest, just under the horn, we quickly tuned it out.

With nothing on my schedule, I settled at a table by the Lido pool to organize my watercolors. Since learning to watercolor almost two years ago, I have mainly used travel palettes prefilled with basic colors. Now I am more confident and branching out on my own. So before this trip I added to my paint tube collection, packing them all along with a bunch of empty pain pans designed to fit in a new travel palette.

Today I first created paint samples of each color, exploring the changes from heavy pigment to watery tones. From these I can better discern the warm and cool tones and subtleties between manufacturers and similar colors. I mixed them in different combinations to see which work best for me. I know that with about six essential colors I can mix the majority of colors I want. Some additional paints are just for convenience and others are for nice tones that I seldom mix successfully. Some, like some violets and teals, are almost impossible for me to create.

After creating my sample cards, I chose about 18 for my personal palette, filled my pans and created index cards so I will know which paints are where. Surprisingly, the whole project took the balance of the day. Of course, I stopped to eat lunch, chat with passengers sitting nearby and walk around to see what others were doing. The pool area was a hive of activity.

Later while in the Crow’s Nest for happy hour, we spotted some movement in the water. We think it was dolphins, but others thought whales. I never saw the telltale whale sign of spouting. And whatever they were, they barely broke   the surface.

We passed a few icebergs during the day. One in the distance looked like a white cruise ship. I zoomed in 10X on my iPhone 8 for the shot – grainy, I know, but it gives you an idea of the size of some of these.

Our fingers are crossed that the weather will improve for our second Greenland port tomorrow.