The anxious relatives awaiting the start of the rescue of Chile’s 33 trapped miners are holding prayer vigils in their make-shift camp.
More than two months after their ordeal began, the operation to bring the miners up one by one is due to begin early on Wednesday.
This after engineers finished reinforcing the escape shaft that has been built.
One relative said: “Of course, we laugh and talk but inside there’s a lot of anxiety, because we know the machine has arrived close to them. But we don’t know yet if there’ll be problems to get them out, up here with us.”
Another relative said: “I’m going to wait for him until the moment he gets out. That will be the longest moment of these last two months. It’s like my son will be born again. I will be a father again.”
This has turned out to be one of the most complex mining rescue operations ever, not to mention an incredible story of survival that has gripped the world.