Acc: Cristian and Ignacia’s home
Dist: 0 km
This will be the last blog entry in this format – my “official” arrival day! This doesn’t mean I won’t write anything in between…but not all days any more, sorry…
Cristian drove me to the Capitania in Valparaiso, and it was scheduled to have the press and “official” arrival at noon. I got on the water at 11 am, with a complete empty boat, nice hairstyle, a bit of make up and rather in my THULE rain gear than in my dry suit! Who knows what I am *usually* looking like when I arrive from a day’s long paddle… 🙂
I paddled out to the harbor entrance light house, escorted by two small Navy zodiac boats. The third boat, the big Navy patrol zodiac boat, drove back and forth twice to pick two times a new bunch of reporters with TV and photo cameras to get pictures from off shore before I “reached” the coast. SMILING, WAVING, PICTURES…business as usual.
Eventually I was “allowed” to paddle in, where a music ensemble from the Navy was already playing some marches. I wonder if anyone noticed I was paddling perfectly with the marching rhythm… 🙂
The music was obviously attracting a bunch of onlookers, and besides the plenty of journalists and many, many Navy officers, a lot of tourists and locals were crowding the stairs.
Once arriving full, the same game again, SMILING, WAVING,PICTURES…more business as usual. getting yourself into the best angle for the cameras, and taking care not to fall in…glad the swell on the same staircase was much less than yesterday where I could not really get out of my heavy loaded boat. Today, they installed a brand new nice hand rope, my kayak was empty, and with a helpful hand of a Navy officer I could get out of my boat easily and get the kayak lifted on the stairs with no problems. I will always like to arrive with an empty boat and freshly styled!!! This is so much nicer…I will do the same in Georgetown after the second stage and in Buenos Aires on the 10th of May 2014!
The Commander was greeting me in nice German (sorry I did reply only with a few words of Spanish…this needs to be improved!), and more official pictures were made. I handed out my cards, but was only able to sign just a few in between the many interviews following.
Once the whole buzz was done, I washed my kayak with a handy water hose (as Cristian is living in an apartment building…), jumped into civilized clothing, and organized with the agency lady from THULE my stay and press work in Santiago.
After a nice Chinese luch with Cristian, a lot of work in my room sorting out my gear was waiting, plus the usual online stuff. Not much time to relax yet!