Toasting the New Year in Miller Range Camp.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
January 1, 2006
Welcome to our first posting of 2006! We had another potluck dinner (featuring crackers and hummus, seafood chowder, pork tenderloin, spicy sausage-pasta casserole, and chocolate pie) in the Endurance tent on New Year's Eve. Thanks to Ralph and Oz, we also sampled some very nice chocolates! Of course, we weren't able to watch the Twilight Zone marathon on the Sci-Fi channel, see the ball drop in Times Square, or attend a fireworks display. Instead we watched John Carpenter's "The Thing" (a sci-fi horror film that takes place in Antarctica, but was filmed in British Columbia, Canada) and listened to Monty Python sketches. We also made sure to toast the New Year under the midnight sun, which is not something we could not do at home!
The New Year brought us some long-awaited wind. Unfortunately, we also got another dusting of snow on New Year's Eve day. We have some new, small snowdrifts in camp, and we can see some small patches of blue ice nearby, but there is still too much snow on the ice to allow us to search for meteorites.
We're keeping busy with odd chores, reading, writing, cooking, visiting, and watching movies. People have been working on future weblog entries as well. Shaun just handed me a nice, new write-up, and Marie and Jani are compiling a team book list. Most of us brought multiple books with us. We have quite a few books about Antarctica and the original expeditions here. (Thanks to my colleague, Chuck Trupe, for loaning me a good one comparing Scott's and Amundsen's adventures.) Some books we brought are very good, but others were a waste of space. I think the list will include recommendations.
I'm still waiting for one team member to contribute a blog. I won't mention his name (which is Mike Rampy) specifically here, but if you've been following the weblog closely, process of elimination will tell you who it is. If you have his Iridium number, and would like to hear from him in this log, send him a text message and pester him to do so!
We spoke to the Recky and Evaporites Teams, and both are doing very well. Like us, both of the other teams have been plagued by snow. The Evaporates Team was able to get out and do some sample collecting despite the snow. The Recky Team traversed to their camp near Depot Nunatak on New Year's Eve day, and found two new meteorites in the process. They have clean areas of blue ice to search. During the Recky Team phone call, I spoke with Graciella. I want to say "hola y gracias" (hello and thank you) to her mother for the text messages! They go to the Recky Team's phone, but Graciella makes sure to relay them to me. I'm glad to hear that our weblog is being enjoyed in so many places!
To all of our family, friends, and colleagues we wish a happy and healthy New Year!
Photo caption: The ANSMET Miller Range Collection Team (L to R): Jani, Oz, Mike R., Ben, Shaun, Joe (kneeling), Marie, and Mike K. (holding penguin that is shagged out from a prolonged squawk).