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Day 1 - April 18, 2010 - Santa Cruz De Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

By Stefan Kredel, Geologist

Co-ordinates: 28°28’N, 16°14’W
Weather: mainly sunny
Air Temperature: 21°C

Well, a strange day. We were waiting from midday onwards for our new guests, but were not sure how many would come …

We expected 109 guests, knew by the morning that 16 wouldn’t make it and were planning to make it to Lanzarote in two days from now, and that another 12 guests are for sure on the island already. About the remaining 81 guests we had no information and could only hope that they would come. And why all that? Because of Eyjafjallajokull. (Try to say that 10 times very fast in a row!) This volcano on Iceland decided to erupt and put quite some ash into the atmosphere. The wind sent it to Europe, and so most airports all over Europe were closed, today only Madrid seemed to stay open, as even Barcelona was closed at 08:00 am. So only guests who were not coming from northern Europe, or guests that had arrived a couple of days earlier to the island, as I did, had a chance to arrive. We also knew already that some of our new crew wouldn’t make it. So the embarkation started slowly. And at 21:00 we had only 49 guests on board, and only one more flight was expected to arrive.

The decision was made by the Captain, the Expedition Leader and the office ashore, to stay one more day in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, to give missing guests a chance to still make it. For the guests on board, two different excursions for tomorrow were arranged. When our Expedition Leader Conrad introduced the heads of departments – at least those who where on board – he also informed our guests about the new situation and about the extra excursions here on Tenerife tomorrow. As I have been already a couple of days on the island and did a lot of sightseeing and hiking, Conrad asked me to give our guests a quick idea of the highlights of those tours. One excursion is focusing on the Teide national park, for sure a geological highlight, and the other tour will go along the north side of the island to the far west, the village of Masca, a very picturesque village in a small and steep valley. Hard to decide, I can be glad that my Expedition Leader decided for me and so I obviously will go on the geological tour, to Mount Teide.

After a great dinner, I went straight to bed to be ready for a great excursion the next day.

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