Tuesday, December 4, 2007

December 4

Dec 4 10:20 AM

Just got the call. Be ready in Antarctic gear in one hour, checked out and waiting, we leave for Antarctica now….I was preparing that long update for something to do…yesterday..so here is how it sounded.

Still ready in Puntas Arenas, like dressed for the ball and no coach for me..….. This is hopefully the last update from a computer, the rest of the updates will be by Iridiium phone unless of course we are stuck here for a week…...there have been several long delays for Antarctic trips this year…

About the local people, Chileans who live in Punta Arenas..hats off to them.They are a nice folk who live in a city on the edge……this is the furthest south of any continental city in the world..

Perched on the Straits of Magellan the city has a busy harbour, there is a tourist component and the cattle industry is always omnipresent in Patagonia. Not hard to tell that beef rules and it is very good. The people who live here are as rule very friendly and polite..they speak a soft spoken Spanish-Chilean with a unspoken meaning…… we live in a ruff climate, we manage very well here but it is nice to be nice since the climate isn’t always that way. A nice group to be around, you never feel unwelcome.

Talking about beef, perhaps some of our fast food people should note this…..went into a popular local burger joint today, looked at the menu and the options beside hamburger were pork or beef slices cut thin and grilled for on the bun….when I asked for papas fritas( French fries)….I was denied, the waitress said they are not good for cholesterol….I asked for next time and she said never…not good for the belly she indicated. I thought who cares I won’t see a burger for six weeks…...but the thing is think about it, when is the last time you went to a burger joint in North America and they warned you off French fries as too fattening and too high cholesterol…wonder what’s in our burgers?? Talk about dietary concerns from your vendor… they were sincere or else my spanglish is very poor , note that a properly done burger down here is a brilliant piece of work and they are good…….well in North America we have to think twice about having a burger and it is not only the guilt, health and obesity warnings about burgers and all…perhaps all fast food servers in North America need to take a fat safe course as in tell your customers what to avoid…...tips based on what is better for me? A novel approach to the things that ale us!

There are a lot of taxi’s here, at times I think as many as regular vehicles, since the price is quite reasonable it might be cheaper (certainly based on our costs) to use cabs in a small city than to park and pay for a car year around. I believe the main occupation in the City of Punta Arenas is the ever present block watch…the meter man and girl. They seem to be everywhere with handheld printer ready…maybe that is why cabs are preferable than trying to park under the Punta meter watchers…

There are more of them than pigeons…

Look for an update from the ice in Antarctica……..


Thethomfamily said...

Go Georgie Go. You likely won't see this as you are now off to the Antarctica. We will be thinking of you and looking forward to reading your blogs about your grand adventure. Be safe and stay warm!

Jen, Ian, Morgan and Abby

brad bryan said...

GOOO GEORGE!!!!!! brad / deb / moira / rowan and the marmots are pulling for ya!!! well, we're not pulling, you are. but we're cheering!!!!