The Spirit of Mine – A Story from 600m below Ground!

I had always had an interest in Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Disasters, for reasons I was too young to understand then. I – in fact – wanted to chase them for a living. It was later that I understood that what really attracted me towards all this was the human aspect which sort of triumphs the tragedy, the stories of encouragement and hope and inspiration that are always a by-product of such an event!

These stories came more alive and more apparent during the two months that the tragedy of the trapped miners continued, finally coming to an end a few hours ago. The stories that reached almost from the start, thanks to the media, were simply astonishing. And what we saw in the last 24 hours unraveling itself on our TV screens was even more so!


And it is finally over for them!


The media and the world is waiting for drama, for the men to go nuts, to scream and crumble to the scars of the tragedy. They are waiting for this tragedy to finally take its toll, for so far, we have only witnessed the positive side of a nation, whose credibility had much been shattered due to past Politico-social events!

But we keep forgetting that these men have probably always expected to be engulfed by their very own profession. That they had always at the back of their head might have envisioned their death to take place like this – trapped in the depth of the earth not knowing how to get out, helpless, and with no way out! They haven’t lived in the most ideal of economic circumstances, and I am sure that half of their lives they have felt the pangs of hunger.

The incident that happened, therefore, was something that they had all been prepared for in some way or the other, because they know those mines better than anyone of us sitting outside and looking. They haven’t lived the ideal life, so this although not being what they had, was not so bad either.

Most importantly I think was that they built themselves – as was pointed out by the Chilean Naval Doctor – a “Society”. You had a leader, the doctor, the historian (the guy behind the camera) thus keeping the depression at par. And then the most important of all, was the confidence that the nation and the Government hasn’t forgotten them. That everyone is working to get them out. They were not forgotten, and left to face death.

Technology played a great role, for although they were isolated in the physical sense from their families – the link was always maintained through camera links and notes.I truly believe that this helped!

The Chilean Government should be praised for what they have been able to accomplish, and how they used this chance to make a place for themselves in the heart of the people of Chile, as well as the whole world! And instead of looking at the cases that are to follow by the miners themselves as a negative thing, they should be seen in the light of the fact that it is these steps that would make Chile a better place. After all, the 33 miners are now the new ambassador of the Mining World, and it is on their shoulder to bring change.

The Chilean Government has done their job splendidly and now it is time for the Miners to play their part!

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