My travel around the world on the "SS Sørlandet"
My life completely changed on August 30, 2017. You see, that is the day I started my new life, the life where I am traveling around the world on a sailboat with 80 other students/teachers and crewmembers. My journey started in Kristiansand, Norway, and will continue until June 2, 2018, making it a total of approximately 9 months.
A little information about me: my name is Fredrik Albert Sletholt. I am a 16-year-old student from Kristiansand, Norway. I went to a normal school in Norway, but I wanted something more out of my second year in high school. I saw the global sailing program that A+ World Academy offered, and I knew it was something I wanted. Not to mention that I would surprisingly have plenty of time to further develop my passion for guitar.
Ever since I was a little child, I loved music. Music was always a huge part of my childhood. My whole family has been involved with music and following in my brothers’ footsteps is especially important to me. My brothers started to teach me how to play the guitar when I was about 10 years old, which means I’m rounding out my sixth year of playing right about now. After some years of playing in a band and taking guitar lessons, I was able to learn how to play proper guitar for myself. When I decided to travel the world, I knew I had to bring a guitar. Now, after one month into the journey, I am so happy that I got to bring the KLOS Guitar.
The reason I fell in love with the KLOS Guitar was that the size and durability was perfect for my journey. I was a little worried about what sort of sound a carbon fiber guitar would have, but when I got it, I was thrilled with how it sounded! Sitting on the for-deck of the ship, under the stars, playing my favorite songs on the guitar is breathtaking.
The "SS Sørlandet" is a 65 meter (214 foot) long ship with an amazing story behind it. It has been sailing the world for 90 years. During World War II the Nazis captured the ship and used it to ship coal during the occupation of Norway. Not long after, the Allies bombed and sank the ship outside the coast of Norway. After the war, the ship was resurfaced and brought to the ship construction yard that it was first constructed in. There they fixed the ship to make it operational, and it has been sailing ever since. It is one of the three tallships in Norway, and is the smallest of them. Stunningly, it is the oldest ship of its type that is still sailing.
On the boat, we are 60 students from all over the world traveling together. As you can imagine, having personal space is not really an option, but you get used to it. The school system is such that when we are sailing we have school every day, but in ports, we have a lot of spare time. That is when I play the most guitar and bring it to different places around the world. Having the guitar at the beach with all my friends while singing has been one of my best memories so far. The guitar is really quite perfect for my trip. The experience so far in general has been amazing, and I cannot wait to get further into the journey. I am so thankful that I got to bring my favorite musical instrument with me, and that I got to bring one that was as amazing as the KLOS guitar.
-Fredrik Albert Sletholt
About the Author
Fredrik Albert Sletholt is a Norwegian high school student who is sailing around the world as part of his high school education. He is traveling with his KLOS acoustic guitar as he makes his way from country to country. You can follow his adventure on his Instagram @albert_sjomatros.