Antarctica Day3 - Drake's Passage

Trip Start Jul 08, 2007
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58
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Antarctica  ,
Saturday, February 23, 2008

After almost 2 full days at sea, we have finally sighted our first iceberg, at 12h01 to be precise.  A few hours later, while in the vicinity of the South Shetlands Islands, I went to the top of the boat to observe our arrival.  The wind was so strong and cold and the rain so painful that it was almost impossible to breathe while looking forward. This hardship awakened inside of me my conqueror fire and I let go a deep and loud shout of success out in the open.  What an amazing feeling, I was there, this was Antarctica! 
 
During the day, we had a few more fascinating lectures on penguins, ice formations, more heroic Antarctica tales and the ABC of land excursions and zodiac landing.  Stronger than expected wind coming from the north propelled our ship a few hours ahead of schedule and the captain tried to land us at a polish scientific station on the east part of the South Shetlands Island.  Having a big group of Polish on board, everyone was quite please with this unplanned activity.  However, the wind got so strong (around 50 knots) that it became too dangerous to attempt any landing.
 
I feel it's now time to tell you what a typical day on board the Orlova looks like:
8h00-9h00 breakfast
9h15 first lecture (i.e. Penguins)
11h00 second lecture (i.e. Ice)
Or 8h-12h landing
12h30 lunch
15h00 third lecture (i.e. Zodiak landing explanations)
Or 14h-18h landing
16h00 Tea and cakes
17h00 4th lecture (i.e. Antarctica historic tales)
19h00 Dinner
20h45 Movie
 
This schedule is pretty good as it gives us time to discover Antarctica, know one another and enough personal time to read or whatever we feel to do.
 
Tomorrow, we are heading to the Weddell Sea.  It is east of the Antarctic Peninsula and not many ships venture there. Once in a while, we see a tabular Iceberg (can reach the size of a city) passing by and the more we venture south, the more the harsh, cold, dry, windy, snowy, icy and rocky landscape of Antarctica is unwinding in front of us J . 
 
Today, I felt that an old part of me needed to die in order to let a new one take over.  I am not really sure yet what this is all about?  And so I am going to bed puzzled but with the hope that a new world is possible, and is my responsibility to discover.
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