Thursday, January 07, 2010

Back in Antarctica

I finally made it to McMurdo. We did the usual routine -- up at 5:30AM, get to the Clothing Distribution Center, put on our gear, check in, wait for a couple of hours, go through the metal detector and get on a bus, out to the airplane where I always make sure to grab a side seat -- more legroom, then a 5 hour flight followed, most importantly, by a landing!

Among the crowd waiting to get on our plane and go back to Christchurch were a couple of IceCube people so I chatted with them for a bit, then got on one of the waiting transport vehicles for the 30 minute(/) ride into the actual base -- the plane lands out on the ice field, far from the "town", just like most airports.

We filed off the busses and into the galley where we sat for another half hour while they gave use the standard briefing, then got our room assignments -- I'm in a dorm bunkhouse in "Hotel California" which sleeps 24, I'm hoping there aren't TOO many other people staying there!

I picked up some linens, went out to the dorm, and made my bed then got back to the main building just in time for dinner (a so-so steak, mashed potatoes, carrots and bread) and finally went to the computer area to get online and assure my wife that I was still alive.

In another half hour I'll do a "bag drag", where I'll haul my carry-on and winter gear out to the departure building. I'll be reunited with my checked luggage (which I haven't seen in a couple of days), pull out a couple of changes of clothes (in case we get stuck in McMurdo for a while), then get weighed with all my stuff and re-check my non-carry-on bags.

I'm not sure when I fly out tomorrow, but the weather report seems promising, so my next post will likely be from the South Pole!

No comments: