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Island Hopping

I stumbled out of bed and rolled onto the 0630 ferry to Kokar semi-conscious. With the islands since mainland Finland being flat, pine covered, and close together, the ferry crossings hadn't really felt as if you were going out to seperate islets, more as though you were just taking the ferry around a lakeside, never being able to see further than the tree line. Now, however, on this two and a half hour crossing, we were going somewhere completely different. The ferry motored out through wisps of mist lying on the still water and continued towards the empty horizon. The low, pine-covered islands, like fragments of forest splintering off into the sea, gradually gave way to rocky, rugged islets as we moved out to clearer waters.

Maybe it's because I'm used to doing long watches on Zamindar, but whenever I'm on a boat these days I always find it impossible to go inside, and spend hours standing on deck. This, naturally, happened this morning until I was forced to go inside from being frozen.

I was the only passenger to step ashore in Kockar, an island about 5km long and very tranquil. The total silence was incredible, and the main road across the island was so quiet that people just walked down the middle of it. Things were pretty remote and undeveloped now - the island shop was down a dirt track and there wasn't even anywhere to get a coffee. I spent a pleasant few hours there before heading back to the harbour and hopping onto the afternoon ferry to Foglo.

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