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After a surprise hiccup, good to go. . . finally!
28-Feb-2011 07:08:17 AM [(GMT+05:30) Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai, New Delhi]

Atacama Crossing (Chile) 2011
So I am currently experiencing a plethora of emotions - anticipation, excitement, nervousness, apprehension, enthusiasm, happiness and many more.  With just 24 hours before I board the flight to Santiago, the first emotion that overwhelms me is just RELIEF.

Mid last week, I had a bit of a shocker - the Brazilian embassy in India rejected my transit visa application (stating that I possibly did not have adequate funds to pay for an overnight transit stay in Brazil) and asked me to reapply.  This would have taken an extra 7-10 days and there would have been no way I could have arrived on time!!

I swung into action immediately and explored other possibilities.  The best one that arose was to fly through Paris, France - so I contacted the French embassy to apply for a Schengen visa. 

Well, between getting my passport back from the Brazilian embassy, re-routing my ticketing (I was to fly through Dubai-Sao Paulo earlier) via Paris and going this morning to the French embassy to submit my visa application, I have had a few more hairs turn grey.  

Anyways, all's well that ends well.  The French consulate were very helpful and processed my request in 6 hours.  I have a valid Schengen visa and all set to board the flight to Santiago.

On the training side, last week saw me run a total of 70 km, including two half marathon distances with the back pack.  I am quite happy with the effort I have put in and I am now looking forward to the main run itself.

See you all soon in the desert.


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Bangalore, India
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