Things have been pretty hectic around here the last couple of days with things wrapping up. It's also been complicated by the fact that I've tried (with mixed results) to switch over to the day shift. Here's a brief summary of what I've been up to the last couple of days:
The night shift had a dinner arranged for us at Scott Base on the 1st. It was at the normal daywalker dinner time, so I had to get up in the middle of my night to go over there. The highlight of the trip, besides the food, was the fact that it was Margarita Mondays over there. The margaritas were made with glacial ice formed around the time the Roman empire fell. The Kiwis have someone doing ice coring this season, and she graciously donated some of her cores. I also played a few games of pool with Jim Cowie, who heads up the operations side of ANDRILL.
Tuesday, the 2nd, was the ANDRILL end of season party. We rented one of the bars and threw a big party with lots of good food and tasty beverages. Everyone was in good spirits since most of the work was done, and Megan put together a nice video/slideshow with some funny memories from the season.
Yesterday was a long day. I worked for about 18 hours trying to finish things up for the report. Mainly it's been exporting the PSICAT diagrams at various scales. There were quite a few new things that I've had to write on the fly, so I'm looking forward to getting back home and cleaning up the code.
Today almost everyone was supposed to fly out. But they've been having some mechanical problems with the planes, so it was delayed until tomorrow. Earlier we just heard that they won't leave until Sunday at the earliest. And that only gets them to Christchurch. There are no available seats on any flights leaving Christchurch until the 10th at the earliest. So even if they get out on the 7th, they're stuck in Christchurch for a couple days. So there are a lot of bummed people. But what can you do?
In other news, these last couple of days we've had a bit of excitement. There are two icebreakers, the Swedish 'Odin' and the US 'Polar Sea', that are cutting the channel through the sea ice for the main supply vessel. So we've been making regular walks down to Hut Point to see their daily progress. It's slow going for them, the ice is about 12ft thick, so I think they're only making about 1 mile per day. But with any luck they'll be here in the next few days. Below is a photo of the Odin from earlier today (it's a pretty small smudge on the horizon):