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A Journey To Antarctica: ‘Before I’d Finished My Tea I’d Seen Three Pods Of Whales’

Source: The Guardian/Matthew Taylor - March 7, 2018 in Adventure

A Journey To Antarctica: ‘Before I’d Finished My Tea I’d Seen Three Pods Of Whales’
Photo: Torsten Dederichs/Unsplash

5 February, Punta Arenas, Chile

I have arrived in Punta Arenas on the southern tip of Chile after a 24-hour whistlestop tour of South American airports. Pleased to see my bags have made it too. I was asked to avoid packing synthetic and down clothing wherever possible because it could contaminate the environment, so was pleased all those carefully selected natural fibres had made it with me across the Atlantic. Luke, my press contact at Greenpeace, meets me, which is just as well as I don’t really speak Spanish. We get a taxi to the dock and I have my first view of the Arctic Sunrise – the Greenpeace ship last in the news when it was stormed by the Russian FSB in the Arctic. It is bustling with people fixing things, loading things, working and chatting. Everyone is friendly. I wonder about the different stories that bring them all here. Are they the kind of people who want to jump off the edge of the map, as Werner Herzog found in his documentary about the Antarctic? The ship is smaller than I’d imagined and more “workmanlike”.

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