Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Pre-trip Reflection

I made sure I had a good meal before the long journey with all freeze dried food (this time it'll be Norwegian kind - not sure how it is going to be better that what I ate in the North Pole) and high calorie snacks. Also I have been craving for seafood and this is Punta Arenas, right next to Strait of Magellan, there should be plenty of seafood restaurants. So I decided to go for a feast on sea creatures.

I bumped into Nick on the street. He was going to get some postcards to send home in the UK. I asked him for a recommendation. He knows the town pretty well, so he said I should check out Sotitos restaurant. They have the best seafood in town. It's kind of out of the way, far end of downtown. And true to his recommendation, it was excellent. I had pretty much full course meal (except for dessert -- I would have if I had room for it). I ordered a veggie soup, squid for appetizer, and fish for entree. They were all delicious. I wish I had room for dessert :)

Now I am full and relaxing at the hostel, I suddenly feel the need to write more.

It's been amazing ride for me to get to this point. Although this kind of adventure is not new as I did the North Pole, but still I had to go through a lot of hurddles to get to here.

Firstly, and obviously, the finance. It can be a down payment of a house. I had to get a loan and support from sponsors (not too much but anything helps). I want to thank them for supporting me. When I told people the cost, everyone thought I was crazy, not about the fact that I am going to Antarctica and South Pole, but the way I managed to pay for it.

Secondly, if you follow this blog, I did quite a bit of training. I had an amazing summer when I did my major work as preparation for this. A lot of climbing. And tire hauling. And gym sessions. I want to fully experience Antarctica and a good preparation is part of process. You can never be over-prepared for this kind of trip. I really hope what I done so far helps.

Last but not least, the support of my family and friends. For the North Pole, most people worried about me, but I made it back safe and sound. It's a proof that when you take a good care of yourself and well prepared, you can be safer. This is Antarctica, nothing is guaranteed and the fact is it is a big risk to take to do this kind of expedition. Preparation lowers the risks but does not eliminate them. That's the fact. But anything in life you do always associates with some risk, so while this seems to be riskier than others but if you know them and mitigate them, they can be part of the enjoyment you'll get.

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