Archive for April 11th, 2012
In January this year – I flew to Simonstown in South Africa to continue filming the long-form documentary of the TOPtoTOP Global Climate Expedition
All I knew was that from there, we would be sailing to South America – and I should bring my sailing harness.
South Africa was incredible.
We soon set sail, and arrived after 14 days at sea to our first destination; Saint Helena Island. (See my previous post)
The social and environmental situation there is dire. It is one of the last remaining places on earth with such a pristine ecosystem and unique social character. There is development plans underway for the construction of an airport – until that is built, the only way to access this gem is crossing the atlantic ocean. The only chance of preserving some of it’s culture, flora and fauna is for the local “Saints” of the island to take pride and protect.
Financially, they don’t have the resources and the economy is dependant on British Aid. The average annual wage for a Saint is £6000. Their knowledge of the island is unrivalled, and TOPtoTOP is hoping that the international consultants that make the social & environmental decisions will start working closely with the locals to determine their future.
Filming on the island was an absolute privilege. Thank-you so much to all the Saints that made the experience and documentary so special, and to the fellow filmmakers who were also stranded in the magic ~
Around the 17th of March we departed Saint Helena to sail across the ocean to Brazil.
It was quite an epic adventure! One night, in a sudden and huge gust of wind, our huge gennaker sail actually snapped from the halyard and into the ocean!! It was quite an effort to lift the waterlogged sail back onto the yacht… all hands on deck!
You can see a playful video of the children onboard here;
I’m going to seriously miss these kids when I have to leave.
Making documentaries is not a skill which can be trained, but one that must be nourished ~ I hope the experience over the last 5 years filming with TOPtoTOP has enriched my perspective….
“A writer sees the world through their eyes… a journalist sees the world through the eyes of others…”