Tuesday, October 14, 2008

M is for Mortsund in ABC Wednesday

ABCWednesday this time is from a small place called Mortsund on the island of Vestvågøy in the archipelago Lofoten, Norway. The area is special to me since my mother-in-law came from this little hamlet, and thus "one half" of my wife. Last year there was a gathering of relatives going back to my mother-in-laws granparents. More than 100 persons living all over Norway attended.

The picture beneath was taken as the plane was preparing for landing at the local airport and shows the area as it is now.



Here we are at sea level with Mortsund to the right and Ballstad with its mountains in the background.

My mother -in-law grew up in the 20's and 30s when the living was hard in Norway, especially in peripheral areas like Lofoten. One had to make a living from what nature provided - which in this area for a large part meant the ocean with its products. The families also tried to do some small scale farming, but as we can see that was not easy.

The main product from the sea was fish, especially cod. The fish was cleaned and hung on drying racks like these until they became ready for export as stockfish. By the way, the racks below now stands approximately where my wife's grandparents lived.

Whaling was also one of the ways of getting food, both for their own use and for sale. This is still being allowed in a small way.

If nothing else, they could not complain about the view - only these small rocks and islands protected them from Vestfjorden - Norway's widest and most exposed fjord. In practice the North Atlantic Ocean.



Today's post is part of the the third round of ABC Wednesday. The founder, Denise Nesbitt, has changed the rules to make the system more practical. There is now a no-comment blog where you can post a copy or short version of your post with a link-back to your original post for the full version and comments. Scanning through this no-comment blog will give you More Ms! She has also set up a new site where you can log on via Mr. Linky if you want to do that.

50 comments:

Ivar Ivrig said...

Lyse og gode bilder. Bra story i tillegg. Ha ei fortsatt fin uke :-)

'JoAnn's-D-Eyes'NL said...

Hi RuneE,
This is really awsome I love the photo's and the views,great welldone.

Watch my M blog here:JOANN's-D-Eyes
http://www.joannwalraven.blogspot.com

Note:
( the Mr-linky isn't working)

leslie said...

Beautiful photos! The more I see of your homeland, the more I understand why so many Norwegians colonists from Minnesota settled in the north-west-central portion of British Columbia in 1894. They settled a town called Hagesborg where I lived for a year teaching school. The year I arrived was the Norwegian's Centennial and I took part in some of the festivities, including sampling lots of Norwegian food - YUMMY!

ChrisC and JonJ said...

What a beautiful place!My father's ancesters are from Norway,and now I most definitely want to go there.

Old Wom Tigley said...

As always Rune I was drawn into your writing and pictures... I could have read more as you had my interest... excellent 'M' posting

Tom

Mine's Here

John said...

Nå snakker vi her :)
Meget flott serie med velkomponerte bilder og ikke minst fra Lofoten. Flott Norges reklame.
Excellen ABC post!

richies said...

I imagine that life was hard. What rugged beauty there is in that area. Thanks for the great pictures, and the history lesson.

crete said...

Beautiful pictures, thanks.

Ray

Liz said...

Very beautiful but i'm not sure if i would have liked to have lived then!

How on earth did an aeroplane land there?!!!

Kim from Hiraeth said...

Beautiful pictures, as always!

Rocky Mtn. Girl said...

Mmmm... cod... being a vegetarian and eating nothing but fish.. I could live there happily for the rest of my life... what a beautiful area!
~Michele~
Mountain Retreat-Canada

Barbara Martin said...

Beautiful, exquisite place!! The inlets I like the best.

babooshka said...

I think you find the most picturesque places to show us. Excellent again.

Dulce said...

I loved your photos. Such a beautiful spot!

Suzanne said...

These photos are beautiful and gives me a wonderful sense of Mortsund and the fondness for your Mother in law. The first photo is breathtaking

Luiz Santilli Jr said...

Photos first class!!!
Marvelous post!

Luiz

Anemone said...

Fytti rakkern!! for en fotograf du er :-))

Bear Naked said...

This part of your country reminds me of a part of Canada--Newfoundland.
It really is a beautiful area and your photos are again MARVELOUS.


Bear((( )))

naturglede said...

That was a good choise for the M. Have a nice day:)Supre bilder og tekst som alltid hos deg:)

Lew said...

Great photos of your trip! What a nice experience to have so many people return for the reunion.

antigoni said...

Excellent post and pictures.

Gary said...

Wonderful post - and wonderful memories of life when times were really hard.

Love the cod racks - I think I may have eaten my way through a full one of those just this year!! (I love Cod!!)

Thanks
Gary
Bidge's Bulletin

ArneA said...

Empty racks mean lot of Lutefisk. mmmmmm
The season is here

MEDITERRANEAN KIWI said...

excellent commentary about life in the past - so what was grown in the soil? i understand there was an abundance of fish, but what about fruit and vegetables?

Ida said...

Flott serie fra din kones barndomstrakter og røtter.
Mektig og vakkert landskap. :)

evlahos said...

great shots of this wonderful and peaceful, must be, place

ArneA said...

og m for måse i din norske blog

PERBS said...

Such wonderful photos of your MIL's homeland. You are blessed that you can travel there.

Louis la Vache said...

Fine photos and interesting history, Runee. Thank you for sharing them both.

Reader Wil said...

Always wonderful to read about Norway, and above all to see those photos.
I have often been to Norway but never in the Lofoten. I love stockfish ( in Dutch "stokvis")
You said something about the issue of the relation ship between the Aborigines and the white population. Well I wrote something about it on Monday, February 11, 2008, and Wednesday, February 13, 2008. You can find it in my archives or under " Australia's terrible history." The PM of Australia did a good job by saying "Sorry".

Abraham Lincoln said...

These are beautiful photographs and full of memories for those who know about your country and what living there must have been like. Impressive post.

MumbaiiteAnu said...

Awesome pictures.
Great choice for 'M'

Mine is here

Kerri said...

Fabulous post! What a beautiful area!!

Your EG Tour Guide said...

Very rocky but very beautiful in a rugged way. Thanks for the tour!

kissa said...

Just visited your blog by luck.The photos took me back to a trip we made there a few years ago staying at the Youth Hostel at Stamsund and borrowing bikes to explore this very island. It was glorious and your photos do it justice. Tusen takk!

tr3nta said...

I dont know exactly were Mortsund is but its WOW...

Great images...

Miss_Yves said...

"M"is for "Merci" pour les voeux adressées à ma Mère !
Awesome landscapes...
Fishermen's life was certainely very hard , when we see the litle lonesome house sheltered by the rocky mountain...we feel moved ...
miss Yves

starnitesky said...

Stunning scenery but it is easy to imagine how hard life could be there.

D Herrod said...

The first one is my fav it is absolutely breath taking.

Alan said...

Nice shots. Love the one with the little red barn and the last one - the water looks so glasslike.

photowannabe said...

Such an amazingly rugged and hauntingly beautiful place.
I can't imagine trying to farm the land there. No wonder they lived off the sea.

Neva said...

These are great shots.....The views are awesome....

Ackworth Born said...

I like the aerial shot despite what I presume is a smudge on the glass (thought it was a volcano for a second).
Life must have been tough in these remote places - I wonder if they really appreciated the beauty of their surroundings.

Virtual Voyage said...

Just stunning - felt like I was there.

kjpweb said...

Gorgeous imagery! I so would like to see the Lofoten!
Cheers, Klaus

namaki said...

this is a beautiful serie of photos ... I love the one from the plane ! I can understand that life in Norway was hard in the 30s ... I have had the opportunity to visiter the Varanger Fjord in June ... and it was so cold !!! but beautiful and wild !

kml said...

So stark yet so beautiful. The pic from the plane is my favorite.

Dick said...

Wonderful place, a place where you can be alone, which is almost impossible in the Netherlands.

spacedlaw said...

Great photos. I love the atmosphere in it.

Red Eyes said...

World's most romantic, what I see so far is very impressive. Do you have dreams RuneE? I am so curious and hoping to see you around...