We are all quite literally on the edge of our seats as we get ready to enter iceberg territory. I have a little more time off today as we have finished the main campaign of sampling and will wait until we are on the return voyage to peer over the side of the boat again. I am going to spend some more time up on the bridge so that I can get a good view of both icebergs and whales, the latter making an appearance earlier this afternoon. Unfortunately, a sighting of either will do nothing for my credibility as it will reduce me to the crazy lady waving her arms again. The fabulous folks from the ABC let us have a look at the footage they took yesterday, and I look demented.
I’m not sure whether it aired last night but Donna and I were trying so hard to keep straight faces as we interviewed with me in a Muppet beanie stretched over my hard hat. For the record, I really am that enthusiastic about science. I can’t help it. Okay so it is not all roses doing a PhD but if you are really lucky, you get to come out on the Aurora Australis, and work with wonderful people from the Australian Antarctic Division and CSIRO, and be impressed by the science and the scientists alike. It is such a privilege to be a PhD student and getting a chance to go to the Antarctic is the reason I came to university, so you’ll have to excuse me while I wave my arms around a little.
Speaking of privileged I also got to listen to talk by Will Steffen, possibly the preeminent climate scientist in the country. What a guy!
I’ve seen him lecture before and I am always floored by the breadth of his knowledge, and ability to distill an enormous amount of complex ideas into a coherent and insightful presentation. Makes me want to hit the books again. So perhaps I should dig up a few papers, revisit nitrogen isotopes in individual amino acids as a tool to reconstruct ecosystem dynamics…….or I could stare out the windows at icebergs and whales.