Uncertain polar bears

It’s been a while since I last posted – lots of things going on here, sorry! And while most of these things are good, there’s been one big disappointment recently.

It seems a certain north-eastern country isn’t letting the Kapitan Khlebnikov come out to play this summer, and so all Arctic trips on it with Quark have been cancelled at short notice. Now call me cynical, but a country that wants its icebreaker back for commercial service, (and is getting it back in spring 2012), and is itching for the tourists to stop playing with it, hasn’t got many options to speed up the process… But a failure to get a safety certificate (the reason we’ve been given for the cancellation), hmmm that would do nicely. And once the “repairs” are done to meet the certificate standards, oh dear, no tourists booked on it… well, we’d better make use of it commercially rather than it sit idle then…

Perhaps I’m mistaken, perhaps just getting too cynical, but the faffing around with visas (a whole saga in itself) and where the boat will be sailing from rather adds to cynicism than willingness to take whatever I’m told as gospel!

And the end result of this – my tour to photograph polar bears in Spitzbergen and Greenland isn’t happening. I’m not yet sure whether my funder for this trip will go for an alternative boat, but at the moment it’s looking rather like the polar bear pix will have to wait a bit longer.