07 September 2010

3 weeks!

I swear I didn't mean to go this long without posting!  Every evening I have had good intentions to go to the library and make a blog entry, but the nature of this place is that you're bound to run into someone with fun plans.  Like last night.  On my way to the library, I ran into a friend who wanted to go hiking to see the stars.  And bam!  There I was, out on Hut Point, having my mind blown.  But I'll get back to that. 
I am officially having an amazing time.  I absolutely love my job... the actual scrubbing of toilets is mehhh, but I wouldn't choose any other job on station.  Mostly because of the people.  I haven't laughed this hard in a long time, and the days are flying by because I'm having fun all the time.  At the same time, I feel like I've been here for years now and today officially marks 3 weeks.  It feels impossible that I've only been here for 3 weeks.  I could write on and on and on tonight but I have to meet a friend for tea, then go watch some friends who are in a dance crew practice, and then pop into the bar to visit a friend who is bartending for the first time tonight.  And it's already 8:30pm.  There is far too much going on to be ever able to do it all.
I did have a mishap this week... a somewhat hilarious one at that.  I had been working on a special project over at SSC, and got a splinter while mopping.  I pulled most of it out and continued on my way.  I had heard that things don't heal as well down here, but learned the hard way.  Two days later my splinter had turned into a big festering wound that made my entire left hand swollen.  I had to go to medical, and get a "procedure" done which involved 5 shots to the hand which left it numb all day.  And then, to make matters worse, I was told I had to wear a splint for the next 4-5 days.  Yep.  So when people would ask me what happened, since I had the lovely bandage pictured above, I would have to mumble, embarrassed, "splinter..."  So silly.  And when I would mop or sweep, my middle finger was splinted out, so I constantly flipped people off.  It was ridiculous, and people are still calling me mop hands even though the splint is long gone now.
I've been working on lots of special projects during the afternoon with fun people, like carpet cleaning with Juicebox, or scrubbing floors with Mike.  This afternoon I got to buff highway 1 by myself, and I'm kind of a buffing pro now.  Work does take a toll on the body, since we work from 7:30am-5:30pm, six days a week.  But the one day off, Sunday, is so precious.  I've spent my last three sleeping.
The people are really what make this place incredible.  I've been having too much fun to remember to take pictures so this is only a very small handful of the crazy people I spend all my time with. 
I've gotten really used to having my own room, and especially a large 4 person room.  This is my cozy nook in the corner, completely boxed in by large blue metal dressers.  The rooms are very industrial and poorly lit, but I did score some xmas lights from skua today.  Skua is the greatest system ever - there are bins by all of the recycling centers (several in each building) where you can put stuff you don't need or want anymore.  Then somebody else comes along and finds a use for it.  I've also gotten a neck gaiter, a flannel shirt, and a mirror. 
My hike last night with Rachel was one of the most incredible things I have ever done.  It's only a half hour walk out to Hut Point and back, but you get past the station lights to where it's truly dark.  Take my word for it - you have not seen stars until you have seen them in Antarctica.  The milky way was so bright, like swirls of milk in coffee.  And there were green auroras, and the stars were blinding.  It was shattering, completely exhilarating to look up.  The black of the sky and the white of the snow blended together so that it felt like the stars were up, down, all around.  I felt as if I had been cracked open, in a way that could only be done at the bottom of the earth.  And I had an epiphany - this is the place to be person I have always wanted to be.


  1. liz you are in antarctica! someday, i hope, i will be there too. xoxo

  2. That's so great that you love your job!!! Happy to hear it, I'm really enjoying your posts :)

  3. So glad you updated, I was just thinking about you today and how I need to send you a postcard and wondering how you were doing! So glad you're having such an amazing time!

  4. Wow,Wow and more Wow!!!! Your wordsmithing makes it seem so incredible and makes me kinda want to go to see what incredible things you are experiencing. I love the pics of your crazy friends! Wow, Wow and more Wow~keep us updated. We are so interested in this other world!

  5. Your hike, the stars, the feeling of it all. Amazing.


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