Progress is possible only if science develops. And the main discoveries are made in it thanks to single enthusiasts, in front of whose frenzied curiosity the world reveals its wonders and secrets, expanding the boundaries and capabilities of a person. Such an enthusiast was "Columbus of the 20th century", the Norwegian traveler, writer and archaeologist Thor Heyerdahl.
The famous traveler was born at the very beginning of the 20th century, in an era of social upheavals and great discoveries, on October 6, 1914. In addition to him, the family had six more children. Father, Thor Heyerdahl, owned a small brewery in the Norwegian town of Larvik, and therefore the family was quite wealthy.
Mother, Alison Lyng, despite the disapproving views of others, who believed that the woman's place was exclusively at the stove, worked as an employee of the anthropological museum. It was thanks to her that the boy from childhood was carried away by the works of Darwin, zoology and anthropology.
Surrounded by the majestic nature of Norway, this unusual child dreamed of long journeys, exotic animals, the difficulties and dangers that await man in the wild - and he managed to realize all this in his life.
Education, personal life
At the age of nineteen, Tour went to Oslo and entered the university, where he met with the outstanding researcher Bjorn Kraepelin. He, impressed by the knowledge and curiosity of the gifted student, introduced him to his collection of relics and books about Polynesia. This meeting became decisive in the fate of the young Thor Heyerdahl, and he forever chose a career as an explorer.
The second fateful meeting in 1933 was the acquaintance with Liv Cusheron-Thorpe, a wayward blonde beauty whom the young man met at a party. It was then that he realized that he had found his love for life, because Liv without hesitation agreed to follow him to the ends of the world - and Tour was just going there.
The girl's parents were against the connection with Tour. Liv's father, hearing that the lovers were going to leave for the Pacific Islands immediately after graduation, where Tour was striving with all his heart, almost upset his daughter's wedding. But everything turned out as the young people wanted, and, having played a wedding in 1936, they left for Tahiti, and then moved to the island of Fatu Hiva, isolated from civilization, which they called their Garden of Eden. Unfortunately, the serene happiness did not last long - only a year, and then the couple had to move closer to civilization in order for Liv to safely give birth to a child. Tour wrote books about his observations, and soon moved to Canada to continue his research.
When World War II broke out in Europe, Tour did not want to sit out at home and, after graduating from a radio school in Britain, went with a group of other saboteurs to occupied Norway. He rose to the rank of lieutenant, visited Russia and met the end of the war in the town of Kirkenes.
During his travels, Heyerdahl had many theories about the dispersal of animals and people around the world in time immemorial. He believed that the Incas somehow got across the ocean and settled Polynesia. Trying to share ideas with the scientific community, he listened only to a barrage of ridicule. And then Tour decided to prove his theories in practice.
According to the schemes and drawings of the ancient Incas, Tours and several of his devoted supporters built an outwardly flimsy raft from balsa wood, on which the desperate traveler had to overcome the Pacific Ocean. This controversial swimming facility, created on the coast of Peru, was named "Kon-Tiki" in honor of the ancient sun god of the Incas.
Even friends did not believe in the success of this event, moreover, close people knew that as a child, Tour almost drowned and since then was terribly afraid of water. It took incredible stubbornness and courage from Heyerdahl to implement his crazy idea.101 days, 8000 kilometers - and Kon-Tiki moored to the Tuamotu island, safely crossing the ocean and saving the life of its incredible owner.
After that, Tour went on a tour of the United States with lectures on his discoveries and received an Oscar for the documentary "Kon-Tiki", at the same time changing many provisions of the UN. At this time, there is a break with Liv, who is raising two sons of Heyerdahl - Thur Jr. and Bams. During his travels, the legendary explorer met another woman and fell in love. Perhaps this was predetermined - after the "heavenly life" in Tahiti, the couple had almost no time to be together.
Mature years and death
After "Kon-Tiki" Tour made a similar journey across the Atlantic Ocean, from Egypt to South America on the boat "Ra" made of reeds and papyrus, built according to the sketches of the ancient Egyptians. This journey not only proved the possibility of migration of ancient people, but also completely changed international maritime law. And this was far from the last sea expedition of the legendary wanderer who learns the world.
Until the very old age, the traveler did not abandon his scientific activity and continued his endless wanderings. He made a huge contribution to the preservation of nature and ecology, revealed many world secrets. “Borders? - he asked, - I have never seen. I only know that they are in the minds of many."
Heyerdahl was married and left five children for the third time. Thor Heyerdahl really lived the life he dreamed of, and death came to him the way he thought. Surrounded by close people, in April 2002, at the age of 87, its greatest explorer Thor Heyerdahl left the world.