Taking Chances: A New Lesson from the Arctic

Some days just don’t get off to a good start. Today was one of them. Our vessel, m/v Plancius, had spent the night sailing toward Phippsøya, one of the famous Seven Islands forming the northernmost segment of the Svalbard archipelago. The recent weather had been great, spectacular even, as though purposefully showcasing some of the best sights of our voyage: the vibrantly colored houses of Ny Ålesund, the silhouetted blue whale in Woodfjord, and our haunting Hinlopen Straight passage through shards of crackling sea ice. Maybe all this good meteorological luck had set our expectations a little too high. Maybe that’s why we were so disappointed when the luck ran out.

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