Thursday, January 29, 2009

Reflections on Ice - Season End

The summer season at McMurdo is quickly winding up. Our annual resupply vessel, the American Tern, will be here in three days. After a whirlwind of activity off-loading the vessel, then reloading it with items to be returned to the U.S., the station will begin quickly sending home those people who are not staying for the winter season. The term used for working a winter is "winter over", as in "Are you wintering over?" or "Did you winter over last year?".

I am scheduled to redeploy on 11 February. I will fly back to Christchurch, NZ on a C-17 jet just like the one on which I arrived. There are some significant travel plans and I will continue to update the blog as I visit New Zealand, Australia, and Southeast Asia. 

My experience in Antarctica has been transformative. The continent, this environment, is majestic yet harsh. It is alluring though challenging. I am continually impressed by the people I meet here. Everyone has a story, a life journey that includes working and living in Antarctica. I have been privileged to become very good friends with a small group of diverse individuals. They include managers of significant departments, an electrician, and a firefighter. The Wednesday evening Bridge group, which played its last game two days ago, started as students. I taught them how to play the game over six weeks. We have been playing weekly ever since. It warmed my heart that "Reefer Bob" (the refrigeration technician) told me he already located a group with whom to play Bridge when he gets home next week. It is my hope that Pedro the Food Monkey, Greg the Electrician, and Marci the Sous Chef continue playing too.

2 comments:

Bubba's Sis said...

I can't believe it's already time for you to leave! It went by so fast! Do keep the blog updated on your travels - I always enjoy keeping up with you!

Greg Burns said...

Don,

Thanks for letting us tag along on your adventure. I've enjoyed your blog and photos very much.

Travel safely,

Greg