“There’s nothing more boring than talking about traveling and talking about where you’ve been and what you liked best.” I explain to one of my best friends when on the first evening of my trip we sit in the Red Lantern in Hamburg and drink Mexicans.
A week later I’m sitting on one of the numerous peaks on Lofoten, biting my lip to avoid falling into the travel blog cliché myself and trying to describe the landscape instead.
The first act of a landscape interpretation
Lofoten is a group of islands in the north of Norway. The islands are characterised by the fact that they consist almost exclusively of mountains, valleys, rivers and lakes; there is hardly any flat land.
Green grass and grey rocks characterise the landscape at the horizon of which, depending on the location and the viewing direction, one looks into the infinity of the sea or into the next mountain range.
The numerous mountain ranges create an exciting composition that guides the viewer’s gaze in all directions. If you enjoy the panoramic view from the summits, you can either wander off into the distance or be introduced into the landscape by the composition lines of the mountain ranges.
The second act brings movement into play
The movement creates special relationships and angles of vision. If you are on one of the numerous hiking trails, the landscape moves through the changed perspective and you have the feeling to be a part of it.
The special feature of Lofoten is that numerous mountains and valleys are lined up in a compact form. This results in a correspondingly large number of image levels, which shift as described when hiking. In this way the landscape creates a stimulating picture depth for the viewer.
The third act becomes damp, full of suffering, but with a happy ending.
In the meantime it has begun to rain and storm, my feet are slowly getting wet and my hands are too cold to type this text. My body is suffering as it is guided through the landscape because I know that I am heading for the climax. I still enjoy the incipient suffering, because I know that beautiful moments that follow a story of suffering are perceived all the more positively.
In this case, the return to my bus. When I can finally take off my wet clothes, slowly thaw my hands again, a warm soup awaits me and I finally think back to my hike full of happiness. But the moment between the climax, in this story the return of the hero, and the initially pleasurable suffering must be overcome.
It was the time when it dawned on me that I was still at least two hours on the road with bathtubs on my feet, because I had the feeling that I could have swum in my shoes or that I had slipped away again on the damp rocks, but fortunately there was no more intensive physical contact with the rocks. Safety First. Take care of your safety!
When you get to that point, the pleasurable suffering degenerates into tormenting perseverance. In such moments it becomes apparent whether and how one endures the suffering or whether it kills one and on returning one is not happy about the beauty of the landscape but frustrated by the strenuous hike.
Anyone who is in Lofoten should definitely go hiking. And not only along the coast, but the mountains high inland. No matter if it rains or the sun shines. Only then can the viewer get a comprehensive picture and interpret the landscape on Lofoten himself.