|Position:||65°41.1’N / 018°14.7’W|
Most of us arrived in Akureyri by bus from Reykjavik and boarded the Plancius directly, while crew and staff took care of our luggage. For some of us, this was the start of a once-in-a-life-time experience! After checking in at reception, we were able to go to our cabins and settle in. We then had some time to explore the ship or enjoy a coffee in the lounge. After a welcome by expedition leader Rinie, hotel manager Robert told us more about the routines on the Plancius, which would be our home for the next seven days.
However, before we could sail we had to attend the mandatory safety briefing by second officer Anika, which included the lifeboat drill. Part of this drill was also a practical training, where we donned our bright orange life jackets as the ship’s alarm was sounded. We all met in the Observation Lounge for a roll call and then walked up to the life boats to get a glimpse of what would happen in case of an emergency. Let’s hope we don’t need to do this again!
Then it was time to leave the pier in Akureyri; the lines were cast off and our big adventure had begun. By the time we had picked up a pair of very fashionable rubber boots from the boot room we already felt like apprentice explorers.
At the Welcome Cocktail we met Captain Evgeny Levakov for the first time and Rinie told us more about the journey. Also, the members of the expedition team introduced themselves. While it was getting darker, we enjoyed our first dinner on board and soon left the shelter of the fjord behind us. The movement of the ship increased and we felt that we were now in the open sea on our way to East Greenland.