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October 16, 2009

This morning Geoff and I sat in a cozy room with our new boss, going over rules and expectations and anecdotes about our jobs. After a lunch of tacos, we spent an hour or so driving around the station in the huge pickup trucks (the tires come up to my waist) used for getting around town. Then we were sent over to the Berg Field Center, where there is a food distribution center for people who are “going into the field” – i.e. traveling out to one of the non-permanent science outposts deep in the continent. We spent three hours making gorp, bagging nuts, and carrying cardboard. Around 3pm Geoff turned to me and said the most mind blowing thing.
“We are bagging mixed nuts in Antarctica,” he said, with a look of bemusement.
I couldn’t have said it better myself. It’s hard to describe exactly the palpable absurdity of being down here. Maybe everything starts to feel normal after a while, but for the moment I’m continually jolted by the strange juxtaposition of seemingly normal things with the strangeness of this location. It’s like the surrealists works of art that are just normal objects displayed in an unexpected setting. There are so many very normal things here – a dining hall, tons of books, pictures, couches, TVs, phones, pencils, weird plastic doohickeys – pretty much anything you could want. And the tasks are seemingly normal – filing, repairing machines, shoveling, eating, going to yoga, bagging mixed nuts. But then you look out the window and catch a glimpse of a 14,000 foot mountain towering over sea ice, or you step outside and the wind whips at you, and suddenly normal things seem very very strange.

In any event, that’s just a brief overview of how life down here has been so far. I’ve fallen too far behind to do anything in too much detail, so instead I’ll just post some pictures. I promise to post more regularly now that I have some semblance of a schedule and am beginning to find my way around.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 23, 2009 4:21 am

    This is incredible! How did you get here? How long are you going to be there? I’m completely jealous and humbled! ❤ Best of luck, gurl, and all my love!

  2. jenny St. Runge permalink
    October 23, 2009 1:58 pm

    Holy CRAP! Those photos are amazing! More more! I love how everyone on the plane is wearing overalls…esp. the dude sleeping on the other dude in overalls.
    Love to you both! Keep your tootsies warm. If there isn’t one already I think you should organize a staff talent show. We’ll ship you maestro’s costume if needed. mmmwa!

  3. Nina permalink
    October 26, 2009 4:47 pm

    Crickie the photo of you with the frozen eyelashes slays me. More, please.

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