Saturday, January 19, 2013

The PM visits McMurdo, More Snow!, and a Cancelled Marathon: January 19, 2012

Saturday morning we woke up to a couple inches of snow covering all of McMurdo. I went over to our office in Crary early to answer some questions about Antarctica for my mom's first-grade class. While that was happening, we got an email reminding/informing us that John Key, the Prime Minister of New Zealand was going to be touring Crary in a short while. I hung around the extra 20 minutes or so until the PM came in, and got a glimpse of him and his party while I walked down the hall to the bathroom. I saw the group he was with again when they came upstairs and went to lunch, and got to see the PM patiently waiting in line for some Frosty Boy.

It kept snowing most of the rest of the day. I talked for a bit with Peter Rejcek, the editor of The Antarctic Sun in our office, and JohnE was there for the last bit as well. At dinner we found out that the McMurdo marathon, which was scheduled for tomorrow, had been cancelled. This doesn't impact any of the Super-TIGER people directly (we're not insane), but Elio from BLAST had been planning to run, and hopefully defend his 3rd-place finish from two years ago.

They cancelled the marathon just because there was a little bit of snow.

During our shift, we met some of the people from the lab across the hall, who are doing work on a robotic arm with the hope of including it on a future robotic mission to Mars. They went out and found a great spot for sledding, with improvised cardboard and trash bag sleds. It sounded fun, so we're going to give it a shot once our shift is over. We also ran into Dr. Stan Love, the astronaut who was Bob's roommate back before we launched, who is back from the field. He said that they could see our balloon in the sky for several days when we were down south earlier this week.

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