Random Thoughts

Yesterday, mostly at night, we had a megasnow. It was so unusual that it broke a record that has stood for 82 years. The forecast was uncertain in that the snow and ice could return overnight, and snow was forecast at our destination for later this week. As a result, Ruth spent the entire morning cancelling our trip to Pennsylvania. We hope to go somewhere soon, but inflation is so bad that this will not be easy.

As a result of the situation, I spent yesterday going from one subject to the next randomly. Because I had just read an article about Antarctica, I did some research on the southernmost point in the world. It turned out to be a place where Ruth and I have been and loved, Tierra del Fuego. Because we traveled to Ushuaia, the town at the bottom of Argentina, we experienced the Beagle Channel and went to southern Chile. I became fascinated by 2 other places in this part of the world, South Georgia Island and the South Shetland Islands.

Both were very interesting to me. While in Ushuaia, a departure point for Antarctica, Ruth & I talked to several people who were on their way there. They were super excited about going further south and knew a lot about what to expect already. One of the best meals I have ever had in a restaurant occurred in Ushuaia.

Yesterday I learned about South Georgia Island, a place I will probably never visit. It is, like the once disputed Falkland Islands, part of the British Overseas Territory. It has a summer population of 32 and half that in winter. Otherwise, it is uninhabited. Even in the summer it is mostly covered by snow and penguins. It has largely been abandoned since 1982. Before that it was a whaling station for decades. Sir Ernest Shackleton is buried there. About 5,000 people visit it each year, and a woman operates a museum on the island to entertain them.

The South Shetland Islands are, if anything, even more remote and forbidding. Antarctic cruises usually stop there so people can experience its penguin colonies. In the summer the temperature struggles to reach 34 degrees. Twelve different countries maintain bases there, but the population barely reaches 600 in the summer. Visitors like to swim there because an underground volcano heats the water enough to make this possible.

Hank

About roadsrus

Since the beginning, I've had to avoid writing about the downside of travel in order to sell more than 100 articles. Just because something negative happened doesn't mean your trip was ruined. But tell that to publishers who are into 5-star cruise and tropical beach fantasies. I want to tell what happened on my way to the beach, and it may not have been all that pleasant. My number one rule of the road is...today's disaster is tomorrow's great story. My travel experiences have appeared in about twenty magazines and newspapers. I've been in all 50 states more than once and more than 50 countries. Ruth and I love to travel internationally--Japan, Canada, China, Argentina, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, etc. Within the next 2 years we will have visited all of the European countries. But our favorite destination is Australia. Ruth and I have been there 9 times. I've written a book about Australia's Outback, ALONE NEAR ALICE, which is available through both Amazon & Barnes & Noble. My first fictional work, MOVING FORWARD, GETTING NOWHERE, has recently been posted on Amazon. It's a contemporary, hopefully funny re-telling of The Odyssey. View all posts by roadsrus

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