Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Day 248: My 100th

Indeed, this is my 100th post. Is that lot or a little? I suppose it boils down to one every 2-3 days, so let me be forgiven for the past week. Looking back through the blog (as I must, because geeze...100!) I realize how much I forget to remember about the places I've been. Not that I don't remember things, merely that I get so caught in where I am at the moment that I have to be reminded of some of those past experiences. Apparently, they were awesome.

I just got an email for the Watson people (my magnanimous funders) with instructions for arriving in California for the August conference. Terrifying? Yes. As is the fact that I still don't have a Russian visa. Or titanium in my foot.

On another note, it has once again been proven that the Arctic is the most incestuous social circle ever. One of the head scientists from my time on the CCGS Amundsen is coming to UNIS to speak at a conference. An old acquaintance from my university mentioned knowing an Arctic explorer who I had heard stories about in Greenland. Some Polish friends of mine from working at Hornsund two years ago came through Longyearbyen a few days ago on their way back to Hornsund, and we had a lovely reunion.

Adam, me, Sebastian - Sebastian and I once had an interesting run in with a polar bear...

I will say its a bit odd that I'm far enough along in my semi-adult life to have old friends.

Did you know my room smells like the inside of a exhaust pipe? It does. I hardly notice anymore. That would be the fault of all my clothes, which I wear everyday, driving my snowmobile that runs like a lawnmower. A fume machine.

Well the big news for this post was supposed to be the departure of the Frozen Five. Unfortunately I'm about a week late for that, as they left last Thursday. The departure was quite an event - not huge, persay, but permeated with that spirit of adventure that you may have found around Scott, Amundsen, or Peary. A huge sense of enthusiasm mixed with pangs of wonder...when will we see them again and what condition will they be in?

The teammates gather for final packing and goodbyes outside of UNIS:

Ulli with his ever-colorful ensemble:

Nice tie.

Spirits appear high, and the team dog is definitely ready to go:

The final strap-downs:

The first step?

And there they go.

I strongly recommend you keep up with the FrozenFive updates on their website. Best of luck to them!

My own mobility-challenged activities seem particularly so these days. A quarter of a year in a cast. Christ.

More views of other parts of town:

Reindeer, which I am now making an effort to capture on film.

Three reindeer and a ptarmigan...if you can spot the ptarmigan, I tip my hat to you.

Looking across the fjord to a scooter training course:


What seems to my eye to be a glaucous gull.

Well, there it is. 100.


ahb said...

I can spot the Ptarmigan. So there.

I'm going to India in less than a week and I don't have a visa yet either. But that's why I'm going in person to the consulate in Chicago in two days...

Maybe there's a Russian consulate in Barentsberg? Ha! (that's a joke)

Anonymous said...

he's to the right of the right-most reindeer's butt. I think he's facing right. At least there's a smooth-white-(presumably-feathery)-looking blob over there.

Miss you! You need to come back to Cali some day and then convince me to come back to Cali and we can hang out.

Anonymous said...

congrats on ur 100th post ...
keep 'em posts coming ...
hehe ...