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A midsummer adventure

But it didn't rain all day long. In the evening it was semi cloudy, I packed my stuff and headed to the lake at 9 pm. I rowed to the nearby islet, which is one of my favourite places. I collected dry branches for firewood. After all the rainy days everything was somewhat damp, so I had to look for suitable materials for kindling - a birch tree stump provided a dry piece of birch bark, and an old pine tree stump gave me chips with tar. Soon I got a small camp fire going, and cooked myself a mug of black coffee. I had packed a tin can of wild boar meat, which I had been storing for this kind of adventures =) The lid of the military-style kettle works as a frying pan, so I fried thin cuts of boar meat. Yes, it was super tasty (although, I must say that the canned meat is pre-cooked with spices.)

In Finland we have a tradition of burning a bon-fire in the midsummer midnight - nowadays it isn't always exactly the summer solstice, I don't know why. Anyhow, this year the official bon-fire day happened to be this Friday. I could spot several bon-fires along the shores of Lake Paloselkä. And a small fishing boat. A band of swans, and some loons. All in all, the Finnish midsummer midnight to the fullest. At my latitude the sun sets at 11:16 pm and rises at 3:31 am, which means that instead of night there is just a short period of twilight. (Because of the day-time saving thing the clock is shifted by one hour, so the real midnight is around 1 am.)

After food and coffee I went fishing. I casted the lure and reeled it back, trying different places. Every here and there I could see small fish being active, catching insects on the surface. So, I was hoping that the flocks of small fish would attract predators. Ha! I caught a young pike at 1 am - not a big one, but still worth a day's meal. I cooked some more coffee and spent a while watching the distant bon-fires. Then I went rowing, dragging the lure behind the boat. As, I think the fish often are very active around the sunrise. But no luck this time - but it doesn't matter that much, as I could just enjoy all the sounds and scents of the white summer night.

When the sun rose so did fog - soon there was a cloudy layer of fog everywhere. Well, time to pack my stuff and to head back home. I estimated the general direction towards my home and went rowing, again dragging the lure. It wasn't exactly easy to navigate in the fog, but heck the world was so beautiful! White gulls circling in the air, red and green buoys emerging from the fog, reflecting the radiance of the morning sun! I was almost back at the place where I keep my boat, when the fishing rod suddenly called for action. I grabbed the rod and slowly reeled the line. Ah, an another young pike! Using the hand net I scooped the pike and lifted him into the boat. Good - this will keep me fed for the weekend.

Now I'm back at home, soon it is 8 am. I guess instead of sleeping I'd better go smoke the pikes for food. The sheer amount of sunlight will keep one going without any sleep, no problem.

1 am : a pike
1 am : a pike
3;30 am : the islet at dawn
3;30 am : the islet at dawn
3:45 am : sunrise at Lake Paloselkä
3:45 am : sunrise at Lake Paloselkä
5 am : coming home
5 am : coming home
tags: 
diary
folklore
homesteading
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Comments

I like lacs

Sure, lacs are likable =)

This Lake Paloselkä is part of a bigger system of lakes connected by straits and rivers. Here and there, on islands, capes and on sandy riverbanks there are remains of stone-age dwellings. No wonder - if I were a stone-age hunter-gatherer in ancient Finland, I'd sure settle on shores of these lakes.

Next year...I WILL make make it to Finland!

My local lake boasts pollution, numerous deaths from drunk kids, random WWII ordnance and a few sunken cars :/...

Seems truly magical, can't say i am not really jealous!! The camera you took the above photographs with looks like it does a great job with this kind of low lighting. I bet that a good quality video of you rowing through that golden fog, silence and amazing nature would be truly amazing!!

Ah, it was just a mobile phone camera. Around 1 am it is somewhat low lighting, otherwise it is nearly daylight all night through =)

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