I started a course of antibiotics and took anti-inflammatories to control my fever.
At least I was not nauseous. I just lay in my bunk alternately sweating in my shorts on top of the duvet then shivering under the duvet and two blankets with my thermal underwear on.
I left my bunk on the morning of day 13 on the Vavilov.
Over the last two days I missed incredible talks by the ship’s photographers, historian, biologist and ornithologist. I also was too sick to watch the reenactment of Shackleton’s journey across the Weddel Sea where a group of modern day explorers did the same trip from an ice flow to South Georgia in a small boat built to the original specifications with the same clothing and food: Shackleton, Death or Glory.
Day 13 was a crisp day with us cruising past Elephant Isle. The sky was a strong blue with streaks of cirrus clouds laying a soft pattern in the sky. The white of the clouds matched the snow and ice on the island. We got in close enough to see the bust of Captain Luis Alberto Pardo, the Chilean captain of a steam tug “Yelcho” that rescued Wild and 21 others. We had started their trip in reverse. First we saw the harsh Alps of South Georgia where Shackleton had landed and crossed the snow and ice laden peaks. Then we crossed the sea to Elephant Island, and now we were moving towards the South Shetlands and we seeing icebergs along the way. Schackleton and all his men had survived an 800 mile trip through ice and storms. It is one of the most incredible expedition stories of our time. Although the expedition itself was not successful in it’s objective to cross the Antarctic from side to side, the journey expressed the strength of men and solid and visionary leadership. Shackleton was truly loved, admired and respected by his men. The story is worth a read or watch the film.
First thing that morning I went to the bar, weak again from not eating, and was happy to see Amanda’s smiling face and the blender filled with fruit and berries for a smoothie. I sat next to one of the older passenger whom I had only greeted before. She looked and me, said good morning then asked:
“Do you dream?”
I was flabbergasted, then remembered that this universe is filled with synchronicity.
“Oh, yes I do” I said to the stranger. “In fact I really had a terrible dream about someone close dying last night. But I know they are OK for now, but that it will happen in the future.”
“I didn’t dream so much when I was on medication for depression”, she said, us not having said anything before except “Hi, where are you from?” She was from New York. “Now I dream more and talk about it a lot to my therapist” she finished, and sipped her smoothie.
I then told her about Ian Player and his Dream Centre Workshops in the Karkloof, and how he has kept a Dream Diary for most of his adult life
We parted and I continued my dream trip to the Antarctic.