The Majestic, Astounding And Jaw Dropping Iguazu Falls – Part Two

The following captures further illustrate the vast panoramic scenery of the Iguazu Falls, complemented by vibrant wildlife:

Capturing Devil’s Throat From The Argentinian Side
The Rainbow Striker!
Are You Green With Envy….???
Overview Of The Iguazu Falls – Brazilian Side
Ooops!! Don’t Fall In!
Careful – I Bite! DON’T FEED ME

The Majestic, Astounding And Jaw Dropping Iguazu Falls

No words can ever encapsulate the magnificent, dramatic  landscape of this natural wonder that is the heartbeat of Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. The Iguazu is nature’s gift that is breathtaking as it evolves and envelopes you. It is captivating and your senses literally drown, as you witness the roaring impounding of the Devil’s Throat falls. 

Devil’s Throat Waterfall From The Brazilian Side

As you walk the giddy heights of the walkways the spray of the waterfall skim past your face, and your heart skips a beat when you see the tourist boat navigating the furious whirlpools under the Three Musketeer Falls. Only the attached photos can do true justice to the wonder of Iguzau.  So feast your eyes on this visual wonder that we must treasure for an eternity.

The Joys Of A Boat Ride Under The Three Musketeers Waterfall!
The Rainbow Effect Spreading Across The Falls

The Birds, Flora and Fauna of the Iguazu are truly remarkable and the alluring Parrots are fascinating and enthralling, as they display their bewitching multicoloured feathers and crowns.

Birds Formation Tweeting In Synch
The Vibrancy Of Birds Is Endless

May Day: Air India Resumes UK Flights

Air India will be resuming flights to and from United Kingdom (UK) starting 1 May 2021. The news comes after the Airline suspended travel between India and the UK during 24 to 30 April. This was because of the huge surge in COVID-19 cases across India, that is on average over 300,000 a day, leading the UK government to tighten restrictions on travel between the two countries and adding India to the ‘red-list’.

Air India will start by conducting flights between Mumbai and London Heathrow on 1 May, with a return flight occurring on the same day. Thereafter, flights between Delhi and London Heathrow will resume on 2 May, which will then be followed by Bengaluru and London Heathrow on 5 May. This will enable thousands of Indians in the UK to be able to return home. Previously, this was rather challenging due to the limited services offered by other Air Carriers between the countries.

Ready for May Day Take-Off | © Trak.in

Requirement to Rebook & Revalidate

It is important to note that Air India will require passengers who have already booked the aforementioned flights to rebook or revalidate their flight tickets by contacting Air India. For those booking fresh flights anew, booking and validating can be done via the Air India App, website, or other third-party vendors offering flights.

Travel from India to the UK now comes with caveats, and Air India has reiterated the need for passengers to factor in the UK’s travel guidelines in relation to COVID-19. The Airline said, “It will be the sole responsibility of the passengers to ensure his/her eligibility to enter the destination country. Air India will accept no liability if non compliance results in denied boarding.”

Airport Passengers Go Astray In Assam

Just as India is in the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic, experiencing record number of cases, passengers landing at Silchar Airport in Assam have aggravated the pandemic, by somehow bypassing mandatory Rapid Antigen Test & RT-PCR Test on arrival at the Airport. Furthermore, local authorities are unaware of how these passengers managed to slip under the radar.

“On Wednesday, 690 people landed at Silchar,” said Sumit Sattawan, ADC, Health, Cachar district, “Some were exempt since they were transit passengers travelling to other northeast states. A total of 189 took the test — out of which six were positive. Around 300 went away, skipping the test. Regarding how they ran away and other details, we are still investigating what exactly happened”. However, he remained adamant that every effort would be made to trace the perpetrators.

Conforming to Covid-19 Compliance Not Commonplace in recent times | © News18

Skipping Tests Over 500 Rupees

Passengers should undertake the necessary Covid-19 Tests at Tikol Model Hospital in the vicinity of Silchar Airport. This is due to the Airport lacking capacity to cater for mass testing. Public transport is provided to passengers from the Airport to the Hospital, or they can take private transport, subject to providing vehicle & driver details. The RT-PCR Test costs 500 INR (US $7), which appeared to be a key driver behind many passengers failing to take test.

Sumit Sattawan added, “The police are currently tracing the passengers who fled, following which legal action will be taken. Cases will be registered under relevant sections”. The need for enforcement is further heightened by the state of Assam currently having 9,048 active Covid-19 cases. As such, the State Government is currently ordering all public spaces and places to close by 6 PM each day.

Horse Whispers In The Pampas

Estancia El Ombú de Areco radiates the aura of an epic, vast and panoramic landscape of lush greenery. Nestling in this Pampas grasslands are the farm livestock and the handsome Criolo Horses that are a sight to behold.

Criolo Horses Lazing In The Sun
Angus Cattle Nestling In The Pampas Grasslands

The Estancia consists of a magnificent 1880 Farmhouse that has belonged to the Boelcke family since 1934. Visitors are treated to a gastronomic feast of Empanadas, Wood Roasted Chicken, Lamb and Steak, followed by delectable home made Pasta with limitless Malbec Wine.  

Wood Fire Roast Chicken & Steak
Hospitality Galore At Estancia El Ombú de Areco
In Conversation With The Resident Parrot

The most unforgettable experience of the day is the demonstration of the Doma India, which is the special Horse Whispering. The video below displays true justice to this art form.

Magic At Work: Horse Whispering
An Innovative Pillow?

The dance with the Gauchos and a Horseback Ride around the Estancia are treats not to be missed, as you absorb the scenic flavours of this idyllic countryside.

Tango In Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires is the most alluring and fashionable city in Argentina. One finds the ambience of the Chic Parisienne fashion aura, the delectable Italian eateries and the charm of an old world European architecture. The Teatro Colon is a testament to the grand Italian architecture with its imposing columns.

The Teatro Colon
Cafe Tabac

Avenue de Liberators in the Recoletta district is not to be missed. A must go to restaurant is Sotto Voche, where the Malfatti Pasta is to die for. The Patio Ullrich has a great range of coffee shops and eateries. The Italian Ice Creams and Dulce de Leche pastries are simply divine.

An Ancient Fisca Tree – Legend has it that they bought the seeds from India!
Sumptuous Malfatti Pasta at Sotto Voche Restaurant in the fashionable Avenue de Liberatador

Dog Park in Buenos Aires!

A stroll down Posados Street takes you to the sought after Perez Sans Boutique, selling signature handbags.  Nearby is the Alvear Palace Hotel where it is said that Eva Peron once stayed. The Palermo District has the finest cafes, where one can just sit and literally watch the world pass by. I recommend Cafe Tabac where the Matte drink is very popular. 

Perez Sans Boutique
Street Art in Palermo

Whilst in Buenos Aires, do take a trip to the River Tigre and see where the residents of Buenos Aires spend their weekends in panoramic surroundings. No visit to Buenos Aires is complete without a visit to La Boca, the home of the late great Maradona, and an evening Tango Show at La Ventana that is simply mesmerising.

Lemon Grove at Tigre Delta
The stairways to the Tango Show at La Ventana
The inspiration for Tango came from La Boca Street Art

Flirting With Wine In Mendoza

Mendoza, the wine heartlands of Argentina is a perfect weekend getaway. It is a divine and surreal experience to do the wine tasting at the Al Grahanda and Alta Vista wineries. The experience of sipping Malbec wine and nibbling empanadas under the olive trees set against the background of the rugged Andes mountains, abounding in picturesque and sublime scenery is just magical.

Mendoza Central Park
Enjoying A Glass At Alta Vista In The Garden

A tour of the winery at Al Grahanda is a must, and you are drawn into the heavenly intoxicating aroma of the various wines nestling in oak barrels.

Wine Barrels Galore At La Grahanda Winery
Wine Tasting 🙂

The guided tour is informative and provides historical snippets into the origins of the winery and the process of creating this liquid delight. It is a unique liquid art craft and it would not be an understatement to say that it is comparable on all levels to a rare painting that engulfs the senses.

 

Electric Energy Epitomises Exeter Airport’s Road To Recovery

In the past 12 months, Exeter Airport has witnessed the absence of FlyBe (its main revenue stream) and a perpetuated downturn in passenger traffic and flights, owing to the Covid-19 Pandemic. However, as the prospect of reopening its Airspace draws closer, so does its strategy towards modernising flying from an environmental perspective.

Indeed, Exeter Airport could be about to witness the departure of the first hybrid-electric aircraft commuter flight bound for Newquay Airport. Should this be fulfilled in line with expectations, then this could be the ‘E-Normal’ moving forward.

The hope is for Noise Abatement to turn to Noise Absence | © Radioexe

2ZERO Project Initiative 

All of the above is led by the 2ZERO (Towards Zero Emissions in Regional Aircraft Operations) project. This will witness an evaluation of the requirements for electric driven flights to be commonplace. Importantly, there will be particular attention paid to the recharging capabilities of aircraft batteries. The hope is that such initiatives will reduce emissions by up to 70%.

A key stakeholder in accelerating the growth of electric flights, AmPaire, was awarded £2.4 million by The Future Flight Challenge. As such, they hope for the entire Aviation Industry to complement the green school of thought, as evidenced by their Vice President of Global Partnership, Susan Ying’s comments. She said, “For electric aviation to become commonplace, and play a significant role in reducing greenhouse gases, we need to look at not only electric aircraft but the entire ecosystem to support electric aviation. That will be a key aim of the 2ZERO programme.”

The Road To May 2022

2ZERO project will run until May 2022, by which time there should be clear evidence of progress towards reducing emissions, rather than just coming out of a pandemic recovery. Such thoughts were echoed by East Devon District Council leader, Paul Arnott. He said, “We are keen to support a green recovery rather than just a return to business  as usual and today’s announcement is a  really important step towards this. It will ensure that the airport can act as a test bed for new technologies including electric flight and can play a leading role in helping to meet the global challenge of decarbonising the aviation industry.”  

In summary, the future of the freedoms of the sky will be determined by the care the air is treated with.

Unemployment Pandemic Piling Pressure On Airport Workers

The questions lingering on many peoples minds is, how are Airlines going to survive the pandemic, when will Airport passenger traffic reach the record levels of 2019, how much more will an Air Fare be post Covid-19. Such uncertainties have led to the unwanted reality that the unemployment levels of Airport Workers has exceeded the unemployment rate across the United Kingdom

To illustrate this, the All-Party Parliamentary Group for ‘The Future of Aviation’ research found that the number of claims for unemployment benefit of Airport Workers increased by 145% between January 2020 and January 2021, compared to a national increase of 112%. 

Absence of Airport Personnel is becoming an unwelcome norm

Unemployment Benefits Most Pronounced In The South-East

Given that many of the UK’ mainstream Airports are in the South-East of England, this has correlated to the highest level of unemployment benefits claims by Airport Workers within the past 12 months. By way of example, the London Borough of Hayes & Harlington that has close proximity to Heathrow Airport, witnessed a 221% increase, whilst the Borough of Crawley, that is a stone throw away from Gatwick Airport, witnessed a 224% increase. Furthermore, Saffron Walden, which is in the vicinity of Stansted Airport, witnessed a 228% rise.

The Budget On The Horizon

On Wednesday 3rd March, The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, will announce the budget for the forthcoming fiscal year. As such, further pleas have been prevalent from Henry Smith, the Chair All-Party Parliamentary Group, for greater financial support to the Aviation Industry.

He said, “Our aviation, travel and tourism industries have been devastated by the near total collapse in passenger numbers and our airport communities have borne the brunt of this. With continuing travel restrictions adding further delay to aviation’s recovery, without a continuation of the job retention scheme, we run the very real risk that these figures will continue to increase.”

Indeed, the Aviation Industry will hope the motto of ‘First and Foremast For Furlough’ is evident in Wednesday’s budget announcement. 

LEVERAGING LEEDS BRADFORD AIRPORT’S SCOPE FOR DEVELOPMENT

Leeds Bradford Airport has won the hearts and minds of Leeds City Council by being approved to go ahead with a groundbreaking £150 million project to renovate the airport’s terminal. Indeed, the Airport’s owners had to convince the Council that the benefits outweighed the environmental impacts, the latter of which had been vehemently opposed.

Explicit Messages of Protest

The 9 to 5 Effect

The Leeds City Council Panel voted nine to five to approve the plans for the terminal subject to further discussions with the Airport over the conditions of the agreement. Once these discussions have taken place, the Airport will present an updated plan regarding the development, which will require final approval from the Council.

A spokesperson from Leeds City Council took steps to ensure that objections to the development had been carefully considered and in line with government guidance. They said:

“There were a large number of matters for plans panel members to consider during this process, including the council’s declaration of a climate emergency and the issue of increasing carbon emissions from flights.”

Furthermore, the spokesperson put a different spin on the debate by stating that Leeds Bradford Airport’s growth could reduce road traffic emissions by ensuring that local passengers stay local. They said:

“Current Government policy points to these emissions being something that should be primarily tackled at a national level – and addressed through international agreements and protocols – rather than by suppressing growth at individual airports in a way that could simply export passengers to other nearby airports at a higher financial cost to them and increase surface transport emissions.”

Renovation Landscape

The Airport Terminal renovation is centered around constructing a new three-story Terminal, which will acquire 365,000 square feet within the Airport’s boundaries. This will result in the city of Leeds creating an additional 12,650 permanent jobs and a further 850 construction jobs.

Furthermore, this project will increase the Terminal building’s environmental friendliness and presents the opportunity to extend the Airport’s operational hours up until 11:30 PM, thereby resulting in increased flight frequencies. Airport Passenger traffic is likely to increase from current levels of four million to seven million by the year 2030.