In the midst of current news and the dynamics of every day, Ferdinand Bravo He showed again why he is a benchmark for those who love radio. From his program, Bravo Continental (AM 590) gave listeners a different moment with a different interview. She communicated with LRA36 Archangel Saint Gabriel National Radio, the only station in Antarctica, located at the Esperanza Base about 1,100 kilometers from Ushuaia and 3,200 kilometers from the Obelisk. The driver spoke with Maria Eugenia Rodriguez, one of the four women who are in charge of broadcasting.
Bravo told listeners that the station celebrated 43 years since its creation and began the talk by returning to the previous topic, traffic chaos. “You don’t have traffic problems out there,” he said. María Eugenia replied that no, but that “the day was complicated to get to the station.” She clarified that although they barely have to travel 200 meters “the road is up and down and with accumulation of snow up to the waist.” In addition to the snow, “we have very strong gusts of wind that cause the snow to accumulate and make it difficult to travel. They are gusts of almost 100 kilometers per hour.
Then he explained that they carry out a program that “goes out to the continent and to the whole world with stories and the trajectory of the Argentine presence in Antarctica.” They also spread all the scientific research that is done and the claim of sovereignty over Antarctica that corresponds to Argentina.
The driver was internalized by the daily life of the people who inhabit the frozen continent. This is how it was learned that there is a school at the Base where “two boys go to the initial level, five to primary school and eight to secondary school”. When asked how they adapt to such a different landscape, Rodríguez answered that “they play a fundamental role together with their parents and that is to uphold sovereignty. It is an experience that will last a lifetime.” Although he clarified that at first it was a bit difficult for them to adapt, they are currently very happy, they celebrate every birthday and even celebrated a 15th birthday. For Saturday they plan a Halloween celebration and then another for Tradition Day. “They have their activities and little things so they don’t miss the continent or their friends so much.”
Rodríguez said that “we have communication through networks, we talk on Whatssap, although sometimes there are difficulties due to the weather. Today there are winds of 100 kilometers per hour but we have reached more than 200 kilometers per hour”. Faced with these winds it is impossible to go out because most of the activities are also carried out on foot.
“We have a temperature of 27 degrees in Buenos Aires,” Bravo informed him and received a response that left everyone “frozen.” “Here we are with a thermal sensation of minus 20”, revealed Rodríguez and caused the surprise of the study. “We have a 40 degree difference,” said the driver, recalling the time he visited Base Marambio.
“The commander warned us not to leave any part of the body in the open air because the wind chill was 40 degrees below zero. I did not want to get off ”, he narrated amused. Rodríguez clarified that sometimes low temperatures give them a little respite. “A few days ago we had positive temperatures. It was not degrees below zero, the sun was wonderful and the boys played a ‘football’ on the snow”. He also explained that at this time the sun sets at 9:00 p.m. and rises at 3:00 a.m. He explained that they have been in Antarctica for eight months and that they just finished their mission in January.
This year and for the first time in the history of LRA36, the station’s team (producers, presenters, operator and on-air) is entirely run by female personnel. In addition to the radio, they carry out different tasks at Base Esperanza, either as informatics, health personnel or teachers.
As they are not specialists in broadcasting, each year and before traveling to Antarctica they receive special training on production, presentation, technique and international broadcasting by John Benaventea benchmark for the development of radio throughout Argentine Antarctica and the management staff of RAE (Radiodifusión Argentina al Exterior). LRA36 Radio Nacional Arcángel San Gabriel is part of the system of public radio stations whose executive director is Alexander Pont Lezica.