The members of Team Acid were volunteered for a completely different task today. Donna, Delphine and I have been running the departure lounge as we attempted to get our important visitors onto the continent via helicopter. There are of course very strict weight allowances when packing a chopper and so all the prize fighters need to weigh in before their flight. It’s like herding cats; big cats, big cats with luggage. Have you ever tried weighing a cat? Anyway for a small price I can tell you how much the director of the Antarctic Division weighs, with and without his bag. I’ve had to tell everyone that work boots weigh an awful lot, at least 10 kgs, it helps dissipate the looks of horror as the scales click over…and over. I can’t talk, I’m insisting that the scales are not calibrated properly, it can’t possibly be the extra desserts I’ve been eating.
Our crack operations have just been scuppered by the fog that is rolling in behind us. We managed to get three flights out and some cargo. But we don’t have a captain any more. Nor a voyage leader for that matter, they are at the hut having abandoned the ship……Mawson and his men are putting us to shame. Someone was interviewed recently from the mother country and the comment was, ‘if Mawson could do it, why can’t you lot?’ Well it would turn out that no matter how sophisticated the technology, if the horizon disappears and you can’t tell the difference between sky and ice, you shouldn’t be flying a helicopter. And so the chopper has been ‘debladed’. Yes the blades have been taken off and we are bunkering down for the fog to lift. All jollies out onto the ice have also been cancelled which is a shame as we can now see Emperor penguins on our pitch. The Adelie’s have also taken an interest in the igloo that was constructed yesterday. There are some great pictures going around of our feathered friends checking out the new real estate. None quite rivaling the picture of the penguin checking out the stuffed penguin that is apparently doing the circuit of the world’s media outlets.
And so we are grounded and being told to hurry up and wait. Hopefully we are not as grounded as Donna was on her voyage a few years back.
They were trapped in the ice on a Norwegian vessel for 7 weeks. For the last three weeks they had nothing to eat but fried herring and pistachio ice cream. I think I’d swim for it.