Thursday, March 6, 2014


Stepping outside, Bjorn and Ane were met with shrieking seagulls and a light drizzle. Geir, talking to the captain over by the boat, had pulled the hood of his green army jacket up over his head to avoid the wetness drifting in from the fjord. The captain, perfectly covered from top to toe by thick water resistant gear, looked unimpressed by the weather, and even less impressed by Geir who was clearly in the middle of some mind numbing monologue.

Quickly reaching for his hood to cover his head, Bjorn walked over to the boat with Ane by his side, with Ane tilting her head somewhat to keep the drizzle from getting in her face. With her hat functioning as a small umbrella, and the trench coat keeping the rest of her dry, she was almost as well protected against the weather as the captain who lit up the moment he caught sight of her.

"Ah, there you are!" The captain exclaimed, breaking Geir off mid sentence in whatever he was lecturing. "As you can see, we have finished unloading, and I'm wondering how long it will be before you're ready with our fish?"
"Well, we are already stacking up the finished product over by the gate," Ane said with a proud smile. "We're probably ready in another two hours."
"Great! That leaves us with plenty of time to clean the hull, and even go for a quick visit to the village. I have not been here for ages."

Ane made a short pause, looking around and sending a quick glance up in the air to observe the birds circling overhead.

"Nothing has changed," she said returning her glance to the captain. "Yet everything is different. You´ll like it though. The place is full of optimism."
"So I've heard..."

There was another short pause, and Bjorn, curious to learn more about Ane's business used the opportunity to ask the captain about the fish.

"So you are taking the processed fish with you?" Bjorn asked. "Where to?"
"The fish depot in Kirkenes," the captain answered happy to explain. "You won't believe this, but we used to send this fish to China by plane to have it processed, and then returned to Bergen for distribution. Now, thanks to Ane, we can get the fish processed right here in Norway. It saves us a lot of back and forth. And I fetch a better price for my fish."
"To China? That makes no sense. Why?"
"It was cheaper that way. Labor cost here in Norway is so high that sending the fish half way across the world for processing actually made sense. Until Ane opened this business, that is. This colony is going to be like a little China one day."
"You think so?" Bjoen asked genuinely curious to hear the captain's view.
"Sure! With labor practically free, this place will be like a tiny China right here at the edge of the world."

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