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Monthly Archive for March, 2009

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Cuverville Island

Reasons – An Unusual Destination – Maverick Life – the Real Reason  (Map this!)

When we asked our fellow passengers for the reason that they had wanted to go to Antarctica, we got an answer similar to the famous repost by George Mallory, “Because it is there”. Antarctica has a mysterious draw that is hard to explain. We met people that had traveled all the way across the world just to run a marathon in King George Island. Others were there for visiting the “Peace Continent”, so called because of the fact that no one country owns it. One thing is certain, it attracts a very select set of travelers.

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At Random

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The Drake Passage

“Hasta el rabo, todo es toro” – Friend Jesus Ruiz de Alegria about the Drake passage.

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In the Antarctic

On Petermann Island, Antarctic

Specially abled – An eight dollar squish – Penguins! – Dali landscapes.  (Map this!)

It takes a special person to go to Antarctica. To get on a converted Navy ship that takes you through waters so rough that you can barely stand up and lurches so violently that you pray to the God you don’t believe in to have mercy. Mercy that the steak and salmon that you had for dinner in the evening won’t come up in thick partially digested chunks and that the pills you doped up on will keep you comatose till its over. In that sense ‘special’ starts to resemble the politically correct description ‘specially abled’. But our fellow passengers were quite delightful and turned out be a part of the charm of Antarctica, better by far than any other companions we have had on our other previous packaged holidays.

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Ferdinand Magellan

A Portuguese entrepreneur – A Sindhi industrialist – In Punta Arenas – A Hindu temple – Indian food – Being Indian.  (Map this!)

In 1505, a young man from an relatively unknown family undertook a long voyage from Portugal to India, on a route pioneered by Vasco da Gama. The Portuguese were at their height of their maritime prowess and controlled a significant portion of asian trade. Having gained valuable experience the young man proposed a daring expedition to his king; a westerly route to the Spice Islands.

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