4. Aland 2017  

We sailed in French Polynesia until the mid of June when we left Bird of Passage in Papeete on Thatiti and took a flight back to Aland. During four months we worked on our house, met many friends and enjoyed Nordic summer. On the 11:th of October we started the trip back to Papeete again.

Summer was already in full bloom when we arrived to our home in Aland. The grass in our garden was almost a meter high !

This year the Flycatcher had two hatchlings. The Blackbird was also there, probably the same as last year.

Insects were also in full action. I found a Hornet (Sv: Bålgeting) who had catched a Stink Bug (Sv: Bärfis) and I also saw the magnificent worm of a Liguster butterfly (Sv: Ligustersvärmare, Lat: Sphinx Ligustri).

Now it was time to continue what we started last year. Youngest son Gustav joined us for a week and helped me to finish the details of the roof and the outside painting of our new house.

We had a lot of visitors this summer. Here is my mother (90 years old), my wife Tove, our two sons and my brothers oldest daughter and her boyfriend. In the background, our half finished house. The lower part of the house is what is left from the old summerhouse built 1959.

Ica and Berndt visited us with their boat on their way from Ekenäs in Finland to Stockholm in Sweden. We have known them for a very long time and sailed together several times.

We were extra glad that Evaldas visited us. He came with Milda and their two year old daughter Aurora and also their nice friend Vaida from Holland. Evaldas is an old friend of our family who has helped me with many boat jobs and lived with us for several years.

We had a great time and played a lot of music and danced all night. Milda, Tove and Vaida are all Beatles fans and we played a lot of old Beatles records.

My second cousin Lena visited us as usual. We always look forward to that. This year she brought her brother Christer and that was extra nice. We saw Bomarsund, had a walk in the mountains and a good time and a good dinner together. Hope to see you both next year.

One evening Toves mothers cousin Stefan and his wife Anita came with their boat to visit us. They live in Stockholm but have a summer house in Långbergsödavik, not far from where we live in Aland.

We also had visitors from Gran Canaria. We met Yvonne and Claes a few years ago in Las Palmas and now they are back in Sweden. This summer they sailed to Aland. Old friends Ben and Sässi picked them up in Mariehamn and we spent the day together, all six of us.

Harvest is celebrated one weekend every year in September. This is a big happening in Aland and many farmers invite the public to visit them. This year we went to Bolstaholm, a big cattlefarm and of course there was rodeo for the children.

One day we went to see Lemböte Chapel. This beautifully restored ruin was originally built sometime during the 13:th century and was used by sailors who passed by on the Valdemar route, an old sailing route from the south of Sweden, through Aland and further east.

The chapel is beautifully situated on the shore of a very well protected anchorage. Ideal for tired seamen on a long voyage.

A more recent historical place is the Russian military installation in Sålis. Built during the first world war when Aland belonged to Russia. For a few years this installation with three big artillery pieces was served by more than one hundred Russian soldiers.

After a few years however, when the war was over and Aland declared non military zone, the entire installation was destroyed by Swedish military.

Today you can walk the old stone road up to the ruins and see what is left. Everything is very well in order and there is lots of information to read in several languages.

Summer went by quickly and I worked on with the two new rooms inside the house. A sleeping rom and a library and on top of them, one floor up, an uninsulated attick for storage.

With the library finished Tove could start to unpack all her books. Her old friend Melisse came by one day to help. After a few weeks about 3000 volumes had found their place in the library and almost 3000 more upstairs in the attick.

With the new rooms finished we could unpack all boxes with stuff from our old house in Sweden. For two years we had stored 8 full pallets of boxes and furniture in the garage. Most of it was books that went into the library but ther were also many other things that we moved up to the attick.

With the garage empty I could now finish one more part of what is going to become my workshop in the future. I unpacked my old Marantz Hi-Fi equipment and it was still in good shape after 7 years in paper boxes. The speakers needed new bass elements so I ordered replacements from Hi-Fi-Kit in Stockholm and once again I could listen to a really good sound. I mounted the speakers on the wall and built a piece of furniture for the electronics. I'm quite sure I have the best music equipment in any garage in our neighbourhood.

By the end of September all the construction jobs planned were finished and you could feel in the air that summer was over. That is a good time to take care of a big pile of wood that was left two years ago when we cleaned land for our new garage.

In mid October we closed our houses, turned of the electricity and left Aland for the winter. It was now full Autumn with rape Rowan-berry (Sv: Rönnbär) and mushroom season. Two days later we were on the other side of the world sleeping off our jetlag in Bird of Passage.

  End of Aland 2017