|Jose - soon after reaching the Marshall Islands|
Surely the "news story of last week" accolade must go to Jose Salvador Alvarenga who arrived in the Marshall Islands after drifting across the Pacific Ocean for more than a year. In December 2012, he and a companion called Ezequiel set off on a short fishing trip, leaving the Mexican coast in a small fibreglass boat. A storm blew up and they found themselves being blown westwards, without the necessary facilities to turn back homewards. It is 5,000 miles from Mexico to the Marshall islands.
At first Mr Alvarenga looked like a Robinson Crusoe figure - grinning widely as he stepped onto dry land.sporting a full beard. It should have been a delightful good news tale but there's something rather odd about it all. For a man who had apparently spent a year surviving on the fish and seabirds he caught he looked surprisingly robust - not an undernourished sunburnt skeleton of a man. Later, in a TV press conference, a now clean-shaven but miserable-looking Jose struggled to communicate and questions about Ezequiel's demise were left hanging in the air.
Perhaps we will never know what really happened out there but when I look at that TV interview I see a man who appears to be traumatised - and not just by memories of his incredible voyage across the world's biggest ocean. Things don't quite add up.
|Jose - two days later at the press conference|