We checked in with Today Show host Natalie Morales, who arrived in Chile Saturday after rescuers broke through to the trapped miners.
Have you spoken to the families?
Yes, they are extremely grateful to the rescuers and very anxious for the moment they've all been waiting for. Yesterday was a day of celebration at Campamento Esperanza. There is already euphoria in the air.
Are the families hopeful or nervous?
They are a bit anxious... And more importantly, we're hearing the miners are also experiencing some anxiety—they were hoping the breakthrough would mean an immediate rescue, but there is still work to do... Now we're told the rescue will happen most likely Wednesday.
What should we know about the next few days?
The hole is being cased with steel for the first 96 meters... they started that today and expect to be done by tomorrow. But then there's another 24 to 48 hours to go. The mine minister today said they are preparing for a Wednesday rescue. The families are ready for this to be over and know the extra preparation is necessary to ensure their loved ones safety.
How are you feeling?
This is an incredible story and to see the world's interest is amazing. There are about a thousand journalists here now (when I was here 2 weeks ago it was more like a hundred). But we all need a story with a happy ending and here, God willing—we have a miracle of an ending. It's stories like this that keep us going during the really difficult moments.
Is it hard for you to stay objective when you cover a story like this, especially since you have a connection to the culture?
Well, we are human and we all have emotions. In a story like this you have to share in the emotion of the moment.