Food from Around the World

Not much food grows here in the Faroe Islands, and on my last trip to the grocery store I looked around to find out where it comes from. Here is a list of some of the foods that I saw in one little store:

  • pears from Holland
  • broccoli from Spain
  • red grapes from Chile
  • green grapes from India
  • limes from Brazil
  • pineapple from Panama
  • garlic from China
  • mushrooms from Holland
  • ginger from China
  • baby ears of corn from Thailand
  • nectarines from Colombia
  • bell peppers from Holland
  • tomatoes from Holland and Denmark
  • lamb from New Zealand
  • ground beef from New Zealand

I hope that the fruits and vegetables have an easier flight to the Faroe Islands than I usually do, but maybe they get special treatment. A six hour lay-over in the Copenhagen airport always makes me feel very wilted. The lamb and beef from New Zealand have come as far as anything can possibly travel and still remain on earth. New Zealand is almost exactly on the opposite side of the world from the Faroe Islands.

With the cost of travel, it isn’t too surprising that food is very expensive in the Faroes. When I shop for groceries, I try to ignore the exchange rate for krónur to dollars and don’t even think about the cost of a leg of lamb. It is a bit ironic that there are sheep all over the hillsides, out every window in my house, but the leg of lamb came from the other side of the world. In October, some of the lamb will be from the Faroes and some from Iceland, but this time of year it comes from the Southern Hemisphere.

Blue, Blue Skies

The weather has been beautiful and clear this week, though it is still cold by California standards. There has been very little rain, and the hillsides are still more brown than green. When the wind is still and the tide is still, there are beautiful reflections in the bay. At night, the skies are not dark enough for the stars to come out. If you want to see stars, come to the Faroe Islands in the winter, not the summer. I need to remind myself to go to bed while it is light. If I wait for it to get dark, I won’t get much sleep at all, this time of year.

A Busy Harbor

Sometimes the Fuglafjørður harbor is a very busy place, and at other times there doesn’t seem to be much going on. On Sunday and Monday, I didn’t see a single ship, but later in the week, it was very busy, and there were ten different ships here on Wednesday and Thursday. With the high price of fuel, I have heard that some ships are delaying going out fishing, waiting for a better market for the fish. At the moment, there are four ships still docked across the bay from me.

On a different topic, a few days ago the street lights in Fuglafjørður were turned off for the summer, and they won’t come back on until August. The sky is dim for an hour or two, but it doesn’t really get dark.

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