Tuesday Timewasters – Stalking the Public – 03/05

Svalbard (Photo credit: James.Stringer)

The Canadian One has an obsession with an Arctic archipelago called Svalbard. Located midway between mainland Norway and the North Pole, The Canadian One’s love affair with this tiny cluster of icy islands began after he read a book called ‘Four Against The Arctic’. When speaking about it, he enthuses about how four brave Russian sailors end up shipwrecked and managed survive six whole years on this island. He’ll tell you about how they killed polar bears (10 to be exact with homemade weapons), how one sailor continually talks about how much he misses his wife and how amazed he (TCO) is by it all.

Polar Bear, Spitsbergen, Hornsund
Polar Bear, Spitsbergen, Hornsund (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In fact, he loves this island so much, not only have we looked into the idea of visiting the island cluster (and we all know how much I hate the snow), he’s also read several other books about the archipelago and written two songs about it.

All of which brings me to this week’s Timewaster: Stalking the Public.

Sometime, last year, The Canadian One and I were googling Svalbard, entertaining the idea of a trip to polar bear central where it’s mandatory for non-settlers to carry a shotgun at all time. During our search, we stumbled upon this: a webcam in Svalbard where you can watch the island all year round….Nothing much happens except it gets dark and then bright again, but still, it’s interesting. I watch it thinking ‘PO-LAR BEAR! PO-LAR BEAR!’ but sadly nothing. Not one bear in sight.

Of course, where there’s one, there’s more. Many many more. All over the world in fact.

Did you know this? That there are webcams around the world? ALL around the world?! I didn’t!

Last night, The Canadian One and I spent over 30 minutes watching people walking around New York’s Times Square playing the game of tourist, New Yorker or criminal. We were bored. No judging.

Times Square, New York


Some more interesting web camera setups around the world include:

Temple Bar, Dublin


The Canadian One and I visited here during our Christmas break and we’ve recently become very excited to think that we may have been featured on it!

Abbey Road, The Crossing

abbeyroad crossin

The famous crosswalk the Beatles filmed on. Now, you can watch normal people cross in a normal way 24 hours a day…unless you see tourists. They won’t be walking normally and you’ll be able to spot them almost immediately. They’ll have cameras and will be running back and forth across the road like chickens. We call them zebra crossing in Ireland. What do you call them?

The Las Vegas Wedding Chapel


People get married, the staff mill about, the cleaning staff clean up, all in a day’s work over at the Las Vegas Wedding Chapel.

A Cat Shelter in the Netherlands


Exactly what it says in the title. Cats. In a shelter. Being cats.

Niagara Falls


It’s a big waterfall in Canada. I’ll be visiting it soon. Very very soon. Like, this time next month, I will have visited it. Unless there are no boats running. No boat – no visit. That’s my deal.

We also checked out webcams in The Canadian One’s home town of Cape Breton and in his university town of Fredericton.

For more webcam fun check out EarthCam or WorldCam and tell us where YOU like to watch!

Still got time to waste? For more Timewasters, check out:

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