This is the start of my four-month project as a Fulbright Scholar in the Norwegian Arctic exploring science, technology, culture and tourism in the context of climate change and shifting paradigms in the Arctic Ocean. After passing through Oslo and Tromsø and traveling non-stop to Svalbard, the first day of this huge project is spent in the village of Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen island, where I wait one day on the way to the science base at Ny-Ålesund. Snowmobiles and skis rule here. Still lots of ice along southwest Spitsbergen, but relatively ice free around Longyearbyen. Temps in low teens (for you Americans), minus 10 Celsius for the rest of world! Flying onward to Ny-Ålesund tomorrow above the 78th parallel, just 780 miles from the North Pole.