Big Week. Big Week.
The Coast Guard icebreaker Polar Star came into station. Since I volunteered to help line handle, I got a page to come down to the wharf and help pull ropes for this beaut:
The Polar Star was opened up for tours, so I went down to go see what all the fuss was about. You can also catch a glimpse of the wharf and the pier to see where the vessel will begin offloading this week.
I won a recreation trip by lottery and joined a group for an evening of playing in the snow (still got the 'ole snowball arm, well-timed ducking is still the best defense), setting up a Scott tent (it was super easy), building an igloo (I mostly watched) and hot chocolate (I had two cups). It's not the most prestigious of trips and I was already feeling a little worn down by midweek, but just getting off station and doing something different for the evening was revitalizing. And it was snowing the entire time, adding to the isolation effect.
Bartended. Bartending has been one of the best decisions I've made down here. I've already made the equivalent of 3 weeks of pay.
So. Tired. Tried to sleep, tossed and turned.
No really, so tired. Actually went to bed early because...
This turned out to be my lucky week, because in addition to winning the evening out, I was asked to be a guest on a trip out to the base of Mt. Erebus. On snowmobiles.
Snowmobiling for the first time in my life, in Antarctica, made for a lovely Sunday morning. On the ride back I found myself laughing out loud inside my helmet at the thought of "I'm snowmobiling in Antarctica." Even caught a glimpse of open water. Miracle of miracles.
The cargo vessel is scheduled to arrive in the afternoon. So I'll head down for line-handling at about 2pm. The offload isn't likely to begin until the night crew comes on at about 6pm. Then it's 12 hour shifts back and forth with them until the vessel is empty (about 460 sea containers). And *then* the boat gets loaded with about 350 waste and retro containers. I'll probably be dead tired, but I'm excited.