Tucked away in storage in Australia is a bottle of Linie Aquavit that I’m hoping will fund my retirement.
It’s a bottle of Norwegian firewater that accompanied me on my big trip around the equator and crossed latitude zero as many times as I did.
The Norwegians believe that aquavit gets better every time it crosses the equator.
The phenomenon was first discovered in 1805 when the crew of a ship that regularly scuttled between Norway and Australia found a crate of the stuff they’d forgotten about hidden in the hull.
They cracked it open and were astounded by how good it tasted.
A legend was born. Now every bottle of aquavit produced is sent on an around the world trip on a shipping container before it is sold.
I’m not sure exactly how many times my bottle of aquavit crossed the equator.
I have a notebook, also in storage, where I jotted the times and dates of crossings.
And I also have photographic evidence of most of the crossings. (This pic was taken at Equator station in Kenya)
But there were times – on the backs of trucks in Zaire or on river boats in Indonesia – where the bottle crossed back and forth across the equatorial line and I was blissfully aware.
And at places where the equator was clearly marked I also tended to wave the bottle back and forth over the line a number of times.
Realistically, where talking thousands of times.
So, Norwegian billionaires – what am I bid?