Tomorrow I turn 30. Funny thing is we are going to miss my birthday because we’re turning the clock forward 14hrs so that day is virtually erased from the calendar! It’s going to be a very late night tonight and then we’ll do our best to sleep over the time change till Monday morning. So since the Sunday of my birthday will vanish, and I’ll just have to stay 29!
The expedition is not feeling so young though. Everyone (but me really) has packed their stuff up and switched from field to office work. It completely changed the scenery on board and it’s almost a bit sad walking around the labs to see everything packed away. It’s almost over. I still hope to keep working through the transit but it all depends on the weather.
Last week was a bit odd. It’s started slow after a late Saturday and I really felt like I was done and ready to go home. It was this weird in-between situation when you can feel that it’s over for most people but you’re still stuck on the ship for two more weeks. I struggled to find the motivation to keep going but was salvaged by some happy spirits around me. I’ve started shifting my day rhythm to waking up early and have been staying up late every night aiming for the German time zone that Tim has been sticking with all along.
A late night movie club spontaneously formed and we’ve had so much fun watching movie after movie in Oden’s cinema room. The bad ones have been the best ones as we talk our way through them commenting and calling things out in silly but enjoyable ways. The highlight this far must have been John Travolta with a Pavarotti dyed goatee firing a bazooka at a Volvo terrorist out the window of a speeding car. It was my turn to pick the 2 am movie last night and I wanted to keep the Travolta ecstasy on with some disco dancing directed by Sylvester Stallone in Staying Alive. A newbie in the movie club refused to watch it though and after him threatening to leave we ended up watching an Academy Award kind of crap that left us sleepy but fairly content. I went to bed to lie sleepless listening to ice breaking while a few chaps stayed up to play their hearts out on some guitar hero like video game. Late nights like these have brought my spirits back up and I’ve actually had a really fun and productive week.
I have booked a model for a photo shoot tonight after dinner and I hope that my UTC birthday will help out to make it successful. We’re still in the ice and I think that we’re riding along the edge for as long as we can before we’ll head out to the open sea. You constantly hear rumours about what crossing the Barents Sea is going to be like. Most of the time they include storm systems and Empire State Building high swells but I choose to believe in the ones of surprisingly calm and comfortable conditions.