Jenny, Oleg and young Zenja (our camp helper) left yesterday morning and headed over to Gorno Altaisk for the night, before continuing their journey to the mountains and base camp.
For me the mission yesterday was printing and laminating. It was quite a mountain of papers to go through, but friendly people in the copy shop did an excellent job and even gave me a generous discount. The only mistake I made was to walk across the main square, carrying a set off maps. Nothing wrong with that unless there is demonstration going on. Plain-clothed policemen stopped me and asked to see my documents. Lesson learnt, always carry a copy of your passport and visa on you!
Today my task was to update the medical kit. With all my local helpers on the way to the Altai, I had no choice but to go shopping on my own. Ordering things in English in a Russian pharmacy was close to Mission Imposible, but luckily, in pharmacy number four, I ran into Ivan who, educated in London, kindly helped me out.
I spent the rest of the day fitting roof racks to the Land Rovers, which was tricky for one person only. But once the job was done, and with three days to go, we’re starting to look like an expedition!