Fresh Air and Bananas

John Jacobsen
Sunday, November 20, 2011

Home Other Posts

Earlier post Traveller and the Human Chain southpole

Later post Shower Instructions southpole

Nov. 20, 2011 12:49 NZDT B2 Science, Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station

6365794001_05c4abce37_o.jpg

Figure 1: Peek-a-boo with the Ceremonial Pole

Sunday here, so a light work day. Station has been pretty quiet all day. Slept a solid 8 hours, had a banana and oatmeal for breakfast, then suited up and went out for a walk. It’s funny, yesterday morning I had a dream about bananas, and then the first bananas showed up on-station. I’m eating one now (hi Dad!).

If you don’t go outside you forget how amazing it is out there. You get to feeling like you are living on a cross between a cruise ship (comfy and isolated) and an aircraft carrier (not so comfy but still isolated). We are indeed floating on an ocean… a solid one. But the solidity of the water doesn’t always make it easier to get out and about, if you’re sleeping on station and your duties don’t take you outside.

Get out, though, and it’s another story. The air is cold, yes (100 degrees colder than inside the station) but it is fresher than any most other air you could conceivably breathe — the cleanest air in the world, they say. When you walk, the snow squeaks like styrofoam. It actually sounds hollow and had me wondering if it was at all possible to encounter crevasses at this part of the Polar Plateau. After several days of crystal-clear skies, there are a few clouds, doing their usual it’s-so-cold-and-flat-here-let’s-also-do-the-flat-thing thing. Nearby, the power plant belches a steam cloud the size and speed of about one Graf Zeppelin flying away every ten seconds.

Went out to the Geographic and Ceremonial Poles just to say hi and look around. I have been noticing that the horizon here is not strictly flat — there is a slight rise between the end of the skiway and the Clean Air building, which is easy to see if you look for it from the Galley, and still noticeable from the Pole markers. What passes for terrain is a barely visible inflection of an otherwise perfect horizon.

Went to the gym and did some stretching, sat, and just got back from brunch. In short, between some fresh fruit, a couple of good night’s sleep, and a stroll, I’m in better spirits today. I know that getting outside is part of it and so I moved all my ECW gear to the coat room near Destination Zulu so I don’t have to drag it out of my room every time I feel like a stroll. I don’t think I want to do a lot of running outside (my co-worker Carlos regularly does 10k or more out on the skiway—he just passed in front of the window in front of my desk mere seconds ago, covered in frost), but will make more time for walks, and continue my runs on the treadmill.

6365788621_7a24685660_o.jpg

Earlier post Traveller and the Human Chain southpole

Later post Shower Instructions southpole

Posts (153)

Select from below, or choose only posts for:clojure southpole misc python art code


Home


Reflections on a Year of Daily Memory Drawings art

Repainting art

Marathon southpole

Daily Memory Drawings art

Questions to Ask art

Macro-writing Macros code clojure

Time Limits art

Lazy Physics code clojure

Fun with Instaparse code clojure

Nucleotide Repetition Lengths code clojure

Updating the Genome Decoder code clojure

Getting Our Hands Dirty (with the Human Genome) code clojure

Validating the Genome Decoder code clojure

A Two Bit Decoder code clojure

Exploratory Genomics with Clojure code clojure

Rosalind Problems in Clojure code clojure

Introduction to Context Managers in Python code python

Processes vs. Threads for Integration Testing code python

Resources for Learning Clojure code clojure

Continuous Testing in Python, Clojure and Blub code clojure python

Programming Languages code

Milvans and Container Malls southpole

Oxygen southpole

Ghost southpole

Turkey, Stuffing, Eclipse southpole

Wind Storm and Moon Dust southpole

Shower Instructions southpole

Traveller and the Human Chain southpole

Reveille southpole

Drifts southpole

Bon Voyage southpole

A Nicer Guy? southpole

The Quiet Earth southpole

Ten southpole

Plein Air art

ISO50 southpole art

In Defense of Hobbies misc code art

Closure southpole

Takeoff southpole

Mummification southpole

Eleventh Hour southpole

Diamond southpole

Baby, It’s Cold Outside southpole

Fruition southpole

Friendly Radiation southpole

A Place That Wants You Dead southpole

Deep Fried Macaroni and Cheese Balls southpole

Retrograde southpole

Three southpole

Transitions southpole

The Future southpole

Sunday southpole

Radio Waves southpole

Settling In southpole

Revolution Number Nine southpole

Red Eye to McMurdo southpole

That’s the Way southpole

Faults in Ice and Rock southpole

Bardo southpole

Chasing the Sun southpole

Downhole southpole

Coming Out of Hibernation southpole

Managing the Most Remote Data Center in the World code southpole

Photoshop on a Dime art

Man on Wire misc

Posing Rigs art

Metric art

Cuba southpole

Wickets southpole

Safe southpole

Broken Glasses southpole

End of the Second Act southpole

Pigs and Fish southpole

Last Arrivals southpole

Lily White southpole

In a Dry and Waterless Place southpole

Immortality southpole

Routine southpole

Tourists southpole

Passing Notes southpole

Translation southpole

RNZAF southpole

The Usual Delays southpole

CHC southpole

Wyeth on Another Planet art

Detox southpole

Packing southpole

Nails southpole

Gearing Up southpole

Gouache, and a new system for conquering the world art

Fall 2008 HPAC Studies art

YABP (Yet Another Blog Platform) southpole

A Bath southpole

Green Marathon southpole

Sprung southpole

Outta Here southpole

Lame Duck DAQer southpole

Eclipse Town southpole

One More Week southpole

IceCube Laboratory Video Tour; Midrats Finale southpole

SPIFF, Party, Shift Change southpole

Good things come in threes, or 18s southpole

Sleepless in the Station southpole

Post Deploy southpole

Midrats southpole

IceCube and The Beatles southpole

Video: Flight to South Pole southpole

The Pure Land southpole

Almost There southpole

There are no mice in the Hotel California Bunkroom southpole

Short Timer southpole

Sleepy in MacTown southpole

Superposition of Luggage States southpole

Sir Ed southpole

Shortcut to Toast southpole

Pynchon, Redux southpole

Flights: Round 1 southpole

Packing for the Pole southpole

Goals for Trip southpole

Balaklavas southpole

Tree and Man (Test Post) southpole

Schedule southpole

How to mail stuff to John at the South Pole southpole

Summer and Winter southpole

Homeward Bound southpole

Redeployment southpole

Short-timer southpole

The Cleanest Air in the World southpole

One more day (?) southpole

One more week (?) southpole

Closing Softly southpole

More Photos southpole

Super Bowl Wednesday southpole

Night Owls southpole

First Week southpole

More Ice Pix southpole

Settling In southpole

NPX southpole

Pole Bound southpole

Bad Dirt southpole

The Last Laugh southpole

Nope southpole

First Delay southpole

Batteries and Sheep southpole

All for McNaught southpole

The Big (Really really big…) Picture southpole

t=0 southpole

Giacometti southpole

Descent southpole

Video Tour southpole

How to subscribe to blog updates southpole

What The Blog is For southpole

Home