Burial of John Franklin. Author: me


Kabloonas is the way in which the Inuit who live in the north part of Canada call those who haven´t their same ascendency.

The first time i read this word was in the book "Fatal Passage" by Ken McGoogan, when, as the result of the conversations between John Rae and some inuit, and trying to find any evidence of the ill-fated Sir John Franklin Expedition, some of then mentioned that they watched how some kabloonas walked to die in the proximities of the river Great Fish.

I wish to publish this blog to order and share all those anecdotes that I´ve been finding in the arctic literature about arctic expeditions. My interest began more than 15 years ago reading a little book of my brother about north and south pole expeditions. I began reading almost all the bibliography about Antarctic expeditions and the superknown expeditions of Scott, Amundsen, Shackleton, etc. After I was captured by the Nansen, Nobile and Engineer Andree. But the most disturbing thing in that little book, full of pictures, was the two pages dedicated to the last Franklin expedition of the S.XIX, on that moment I thought that given the time on which this and others expeditions happened, few or any additional information could be obtained about it. I couldn´t imagine that after those two pages It would be a huge iceberg full of stories, unresolved misteries, anecdotes, etc. I believe that this iceberg, on the contrary than others, would continue growing instead melting.

lunes, 17 de septiembre de 2012

EXPAND YOUR LIBRARY (Edited version)

Are you tired of reading ancient journals in your e-book? or of buying books coldly via Amazon?

Do you like to feel the hardcover of a really old book in your hands?

Then you have to walk and walk again, enter in the old book shops and wander into them and ask for the travel section. Sometimes you can be surprised, and suddenly find yourself holding a very old book in your hands. In this moment you can feel several different sensations.

I´ve found this evening the second volume of the original first edition of  "Farthest North". its back cover was very spoiled, but it increased my feeling that I had in my hands an old book with a long and secret life. I´ve could admire its wonderful cover and the golden edges in its pages. I´ve enjoyed that moment.

I´ve  also felt a strange and ancient sensation as if I were holding "The neverending story". As if I could open that book and then, being tele-transported directly to the arctic ice...

Photo of "Farthest North" From "Beautiful books"  http://www.bibliopedant.com/
A beautiful web site to take a walk, indeed.
I haven´t bought it although its price was only 30 €. I wanted to check before its real price in the web.

In the "rare book shops" the cost per volume can vary from 200 $ to 50 $, so I have to think a little about it. I don´t think that there will be a long row of people asking for the book tomorrow in the shop .

The book in fact is magnific, if you want to read it and to watch the sketches you can do it for free here.

The re-edition is available in amazon much cheaper, but...what about having the feeling of holding a book which was made two years after Nansen came back?.

I´ve found a site where you can found a lot of this rare books, and even if you don´t want to buy any of them, at least you can take a look to see how this books looks like when they where originally published.

The site is this: http://chetrossrarebooks.com/catalog/arctic/

5 comentarios:

  1. Beautiful post, Andres, and so true! It is a magical feeling to hold an old, worn book in your hands. The electronic versions pale in comparison. I'm going to love browsing that website!

  2. Yes, it is a curious feeling. But I have to say that I am still buying through Amazon. In Spain, finding any of this jewels is nearly impossible, even the modern arctic books are hard to find. When you find one, as it happened to me yesterday, it is like finding an egg in a nest, which it is at the same time in the bottom of a well, which it is at the same time in the court yard of a castle, which it is at the same time on the top of a mountain, w.i.i.a.t.s.t. in a far kingdom, etc.

    So this afternoon I´ve received "Unravelling the Franklin Mistery" from Amazon...ejem, ejem. For me, at least, It is a necessity using this kind of modern and cold methods anyway, you know. The great thing is that ... I HAVE THE COVETED BOOK!!!!

  3. Speaking of reading ancient journals, just the other day I was reading Parry's from the 1824 expedition and read aloud the portion about the men and their undergarments freezing, to my mother -she wondered why I was reading about dead guys bits freezing - I looked at her said, 'duh, it's history!'

    Back to the post; what a pretty cover 'Farthest North' had! W^o^W

  4. As Jaeschylus rightly said in the previous post, the arctic can be a very cruel place. But both, its history and the arctic itself, are fascinating and adictive.

    I suppose that those who have been in the arctic and have received "The call of the north" know well why they repeat their visits to this places. I´ve never been there but I received once "The call of the mountains" and I think that I can understand the feeling in a far similar way.

    In a different sense, all of us, the people which are inmersed in the reading of journals writen a century before, have somehow received that "call" but shouted from a long distance, enough however, to be, nearly obsessed with this issues.

    I compare it with the mountains which I know better, and though different, they share some of their cruelties and add others. In the case of the arctic in the previous centuries: Scurvy, lack of accurate maps, suitable means to orient you, lack of food, walls of ice trying to capture you, and a long etc. In the case of the mountains, you have to add avalanches, fallen rocks, sudden weather changes, etc.

    Both histories are full of adventures, rough and gallant people, anecdotes, and even murders, politics, intrigues and ardent love stories.

    That´s the reason I am so hooked to this kind of readings.

    1. I don't think anyone else could have said it better, Andres! I share the same sentiments: the dangerous beauty of the mountains AND the polar climes is irresistible.