Kamchatka Land of 10,000 Bears, Part 22. Heading Home

by david on March 13, 2020

Saturday, May 11th 2019

I managed to sleep soundly despite my long nap yesterday afternoon. I jumped into the shower and finished packing my last minute items. One more of Olya’s breakfasts, with one last helping of the white cherry preserves on my granola. Add some fried eggs and bacon, all washed down with several cups of coffee, and I was good. The helicopter was supposed to be there at about 11:00. That left plenty of time for Julia and I to talk some more. We heard the helicopter for a few minutes before we felt it, and we felt it before we saw it. The vibration as it flew over was pretty cool. It was an older MI-8 helicopter, a workhorse for the last 40 years or so. This one did not look that old. It was painted with lots of bright colors. It took the guys the better part of an hour to unload and reload the helicopter. The only three outbound passengers were Vasili, Julia and myself. In addition to us and our luggage, there was a snowmobile in need of repair and about thirty empty 55-gallon drums. While the final items were being loaded, I managed to get a few moments to say goodbye to everyone. I really hated to leave.  However, it was time. I would have a few days in a hotel, and then back to back flights from Petropavlovsk to Moscow, Moscow to New York, and finally New York to Raleigh. This trip was over and I hoped I would survive a sixteen hour time change. It will be good to be home, see everyone and get back into the North Carolina rhythm of life.

Hum … wonder where I’ll go next.

 

The MI-8, once the workhorse of the Russian military would be my ride home. This one had a fancy civilian paint job.  The MI-8, once the workhorse of the Russian military would be my ride home. This one had a fancy civilian paint job.

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