12 April 2007
We are in Svalbard. The “we” represents a strong team made of sailors, scientists, movie makers, photograph, pilots. Jean, Romain, Etienne, Francis, Eric, Hélène, Michaël and Philippe,…
“We” covers the three navigators who have left the boat, Denys, Hervé, Bruno and who arrived at home in France last Wednesday.
“We” represents also those who took off on the DC3 toward Tara last Monday, Marion, Guillaume, Ben, who are going to be away for a year, six months or three weeks.
And then there are those who are on board, who should be relieved in a few days, and those who are going to continue on the drift for several months. Nicolas, Mathieu, Gamet, Viktor and Grant.
“We” is also Bernard, alone in Russia, having to wrestle with the Russian bureaucracy
Finally it also covers the land team, Eloïse, Anne, Myriam, Caroline and Noan who have remained to relay us.
A strong and tightly knit team that has been working hard across Europe, from Paris to Moscow, from Longyearbyen to 87°North.
Like in September 2006, bureaucratic set backs have upset the organisation of our mission.
The scientific mission that has already taken place during the polar night was successful and we were able to transmit and bring back information to dozens of labs. The film makers and photographers have already brought back photos, films that have astonished us and amazed a lot of people.
The team is continuing to work on board and here in Longyearbyen, a small town busy with tourists and explorers. Longyearbyen is like a camp base for us, from which some of us would be happy to leave as early as possible to join Tara, our star from which we have never been closer in many months.
Thank you Etienne, you have a fantastic team. We are doing this with you and for you, even if we are going through difficult times, the support is mutual and we shall accomplish together the drift until the end.
We have not reached yet the highest point of our journey, we have not yet covered half of the distance, so, as I was saying last night, let’s save the date of the 20th of April 2008 before the boat exits from the ice and let’s meet all together in ten years for my 80th birthday!