British Woman Stranded On Remote Island For Two Months
A woman has been stranded on a remote Myanmar island for two months, living like a real-life castaway.
Natalie Poole, 35, landed on Kyun Pila on 19 March, with plans to spend a month working as a volunteer on a coral reef, but coronavirus lockdown meant that she was stuck there.
Natalie, from Devon, is now living like a real life castaway, after the only boat off the island was cancelled when both Myanmar and Thailand went into lockdown.
Since then, Natalie and four other volunteers have had to survive with almost no aid, in an almost entirely remote location, sharing their island with the likes of snakes, scorpions, wild boar and monitor lizards.
The five castaways were expecting to be rescued on 5 May, but then again had their boat cancelled after Thailand's lockdown conditions were extended further.
Although the scuba diver instructor should be back in Devon by now, working as a summer school teacher, Natalie is hopeful they will be rescued at some point this month.
Speaking to the BBC, she said: "The hardest thing for me has been not knowing how long we're going to be here.
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"It's kind of up and down, we're a very small group of people and we're living in a very confined, close situation.
"In the back of our minds is obviously families back home and stuff, which adds to the tension a little bit. We're just trying to take things day by day."
Although her visa has expired, like many countries, Myanmar have relaxed restrictions due to the pandemic.
The group, which includes two women and three men from England, Hungary, Canada, France and Malaysia, do have some respite though - there is a resort a 15 minute dinghy ride away on the island where they have access to showers, portable cabin accommodation and a bit of WiFi - which has helped Natalie to keep in touch with her 78-year-old dad in the UK.
The five of them have all made their own huts out of bamboo and bits of plastic and have continued with their environmental work - their original reason for heading out to the island.
Natalie has been scouting the beach for bits of washed up waste to use for tools and to improve their huts, and the group has even started planting their own vegetables.
Having noticed the weather begin to change, the group is hoping to be rescued soon, as the impending rainy season is starting to become a worry.
Featured Image Credit: Natalie Poole
Topics: UK News