Amundsen Outward Bound at the First Depot

24 October, 1911

“It was a treat to get into the tent; the day had been a bitter one.  During the night the wind went round to the north, and all the snow that had been blown northward by the wind the previous day had nothing to do but come back again; the road was free.  And it made the utmost use of the opportunity; nothing could be seen for driving show when we turned out the next morning.  We could only stay where we were, and console ourselves with the thought that it made no difference, as it had been decided that we were to remain here two days.

“But staying in a tent all day is never very amusing, especialy when one is compelled to keep to one’s sleeping-bag the whole time.  You soon get tired of talking, and you can;t write all day long, either.  Eating is a good way of passing the time, if you can afford it, and so is reading, if you have anything to read; but as the menu is limited, and the library as a rule somewhat  deficient on a sledging trip, these two expedients fall to the ground.

“There is, however, one form of entertainment that may be indulged in under these circumstances without scrupl;e, and that is a good nap.  Happy the man who can sleep the clock round on days like these; but that is a gift that is not vouchsafed to all, and those who have it will not own up to it.   I have heard men snore till I was really afraide they would choke, but as for acknowledging that they had been asleep–never!”


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