Taming the Antarctic
What is the one thing that defines you? Where do you stop at?
When we walked through the magnificent and picturesque campus of The Doon School in early 2015, the place was buzzing with enthusiasm. Age-old traditions and legacies are protected here along with an energy that is contagious. The boarders are ready to take on the world, and they would stop at nothing.
What do you offer these enthusiastic and adventurous boarders that would blow them away?
Apparently, a challenge none of them have faced ever. Actually, a challenge that no Indian School has ever faced. We ask an often clichéd question. What is the one thing that you haven’t done before? There’s this one response that catches our attention, ‘’ I have traversed 5 continents at age 12, there’s really nothing more left more to see now, is it? ”
As we walk them through the bylanes of where they are going, we couldn’t help but see those ‘Oh wow’ looks on their face. Pitching a tent at -6 degrees Celsius, camping under the Midnight Sun, and with Penguins for companions, there would be hardly any scene that would beat it? Edvour will be going to Antarctica, and in the process the boys will be part of history of educational travel by becoming the First Indian School to reach Antarctica.
As we board the Polar Cruiser there is nervousness in the air. There are 2 days of Drakes Passage ahead of us. Stormy seas and icy conditions make this a test for even the best of all sailors. Antarctica is a place deemed by many to be too inhospitable to live, a place, which has no permanent residents. But just as young learners aboard are starting to get wary, they are hit by the serenity of the crisp Antarctica Air. The Antarctic Coastline is in range, and it is truly majestic. We realise the fact that this is the most sought after place in the world, but it is traversed by only a few.
As penguins squabble and cracks of glaciers make noise, the boarders can’t wait to get on land. The Antarctica Expedition has begun!!!
Antarctica opens up for visitors in the months of October to March. Of the approximately 25,000 travelers who frequent the continent every year, less than 1% of them are Indians.
This post is part of a series titled Taming the Antarctic – a first of its kind expedition to the southernmost continent. Watch this space for more!!!
Copyright Edvour 2015
Picture Credits: Avan Goel