Day 2 & 3

As it turns out, no one at RPSC told me what my job would be.  I knew I was a GA (General Assistant), but I didn’t know which department I would be working for.  Eventually I tracked down someone who told me I’d be working in the Power Plant/Waste Water Treatment Plant.  Sounds good to me.  However, I had not had my Hepatitus A & B shots.  I was told that I would not be able to do my job for at least 30 days after I got those shots.  So I went to Medical and got both shots (the first ones anyway, because they are both a series of shots).  Everyone in Medical knew my brother because he had gotten REALLY sick the week before (  Then I went to my morning safety meeting.  Every morning there is a half hour safety meeting/stretching time.  It’s nice.  Then my boss sent me over to do two trainings (since I can’t do my job yet): a walking orientation of McMurdo Station and OSL (Outside Training Lecture).  Both were interesting and informative.  After lunch, I met up with Ken and he gave me something to do….there was a large room filled with buzzing equipment and a huge toolbox in the corner (6 feet by 4 feet by 4 feet).  I opened the drawer marked “Metric Socket” to find metric and standard sockets as well as wrenches, wires, and all other kinds of crap just piled into each drawer.  Can you guess what my job was?  It was actually kind of nice, because I could just listen to Harry Potter on my iPod and have total control of how I was going to organize it.  I like that kind of thing.  After doing that for a few hours, Ken took me aside and told me to take as many trainings as I can (light vehicle training, snow school, sea ice training, etc) so that he can send me off to do exciting things, since I can’t do ‘my job’ for a while.  Ken’s a great guy. 

 Saturday was also the night of the BIG halloween party here at McMurdo.  My good buddy Tia could not go to the party because she had to work the night shift over at MacOps, so I went over to visit her first.  She basically runs all of the radio communications between McMurdo and the South Pole/base camps.  It was quite impressive/interesting to get to watch her work.  Then I high tailed it over to the party.  It was absolutely insane.  There were hundreds of crazy people dressed up and dancing like there was no tomorrow.  It was like the Macalester QU except it was on Antarctica.  It was so hot and humid in there from all of the sweaty dancers that at times people would open the door to let a bit of cold air in and the room would fill up with steam due to the temperature change.  It was like someone had turned on a smoke machine. 

 Sunday is my day off.  I slept in and ate a huge brunch.  Later in the day my roommate, Karl, and I took a hike up Observation Hill to get a look around.  We had a great view of McMurdo Station and all of the crazy mountains as well as loads of sea ice.  However, it was -5 with a -30 windchill so my moustache kept freezing to my face mask.  I’m about to go to a science lecture about whether it would be more fuel efficient to take fuel to the south pole by ground rather than by air.  I can’t wait. 


One Response to “Day 2 & 3”

  1. Ellen Says:


    You are in Antarctica—far out….literally. Thanks for you blog. I love reading it, in my head it sounds as if you are talking in your normal voice with the inflections and everything.

    Please give Eli and Meredith a hug for me. Would you like me to send you anything?


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