Day 46–Quietness and the Frostbite

December 20, 2011 6:00pm

December 120, 2011

S81°18.637 E048°17.162

Elevation 12040 feet

Stillness surrounds us. All night the tent was battered again by the lashing winds, shaking, howling and hissing. By morning, however, the silence was deafening. Not a flutter from the tent, nor a whisper in the air. The sun was in hiding as evidenced by the sharp drop in temperature inside, and the absence of the morning blast of light over Eric’s side of the tent. Outside, a fog had overtaken the landscape, shrouding us in a blanket of white. Small crystal were dropping from the sky, but you could hear a pin drop: not a sound and a complete white out. The chill was piercing, and the temperature gage hit below 30C. That is all it took to get back to the warm feathers of the sleeping bag. As the day wore on, the horizon fought to outline itself, slowly defining a band of pale blue hues from the white midst. The sky looked like an abstract minimalist painting. Life imitating art.

Without the sun, it is hard to hide from the cold. Even inside, temperatures were well below zero for most of the day, which made for a good nap day. Eric repeated the effort of fixing the other binding, with the added comfort that the breaks were virtually identical. The fix, therefore, followed the same formula. Let’s hope they both hold.

I lost another nail today. In these boots, and after multiple weeks of riding over really rough terrain, the toes sustain a certain amount of trauma. Some go black; others bruise on top; just about all of them go numb. The feeling will slowly come back over weeks following the expedition. At least that’s how it went after Greenland. But the ongoing promising development is that the frostbite has not expanded or deteriorated for the last week, which conservatively suggests that it will not affect negatively the remainder of the expedition. This is a long shot from contemplations of loss, aborted mission and medivac, which were all discussed only a few days ago! Evidently, an angel is still sitting on my shoulder.

No travel today. The POI playing hard to get. Late in the evening, the sky cleared, and the sun, again, blasted the tent with its warm rays. I have a feeling the storm system of the last few days is behind us. This probably means back to low winds and slow miles. Whatever it takes…
PS. For those who have never seen a frostbite–there it is! It will heal.

5 Responses to “Day 46–Quietness and the Frostbite”

  1. Lis says:

    I am rooting for that toe!!!! Go, toe! Go, Sebastian!!!!!

  2. You’re a trooper,battle on!Ask that angel on your shoulder for help,you’re doing something good and worthwhile,it’s why he’s there.Good Luck to you and God Bless.

  3. Matthew says:

    “Keep calm, and carry on”….”See you on the other side mate”…:)

  4. BASILE says:

    Bad looking, but good new: it will heal
    It’s okay
    Best wishes

  5. Ginger says:

    Ewww yuck! Hobbit Feet!!!!

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