We had a nice Christmas dinner at midnight going into Christmas day. There was shrimp, duck, lobster tails, and beef wellington. I learned my lesson at Thanksgiving and made sure not to gorge myself too much. All in all it was a pretty good mood.
I was feeling pretty glum for Christmas. I didn't sleep very well the night before so I had a bad headache, and being away and missing all the festivities back home made me a little depressed. Davide cheered me up, though. After work we went to the Galley and got big plates of fruit. And then we walked back to the lounge to watch a movie and play some pool. On the walk home, we ran into the skua and just dared him to take to the air and try to attack us. He eyed us interestedly but I think since there were two of us, he decided to wait for easier pickings. Or maybe he had already gotten his share of the Christmas feast and he was full. It was a good Christmas even if I wasn't at home with my family.
Last night was Tom's last day on the night shift. He's going out into the field in a couple days. What a trooper! He's been down here with us since October and is heading out to the field for another 6 weeks. I know I speak for everyone on the night shift when I say that he'll be sorely missed. But hopefully we won't be on the night shift for much longer...
The big surprise for Christmas day was that drilling completed. The last run came up at approximately 10:30PM putting us at a terminal depth of around 1285 meters below the sea floor (and nearly 100% core recovery). We're currently about 100m behind the bit, which means another 2-4 days of night shift depending on the complexity of the core. The first ANDRILL hole is officially a success!
I'd also call PSICAT a success. The road hasn't been without bumps, but with nearly 1200m logged already, PSICAT has been up to the challenge. There's been no major failures; only minor annoyances. I've implemented a lot of new features and fixed as many of the annoyances that my time down here has allowed. The day to day operations has given me valuable insight into how people interact with PSICAT. The team down here has also given me plenty of useful feedback into how things can be improved to make using PSICAT easier and more productive.
Other than all of that, things are about the same: still working hard, still tired, but still having a good time. I'm looking forward to getting back and seeing family and friends. That and a big Chipotle burrito. :)