|Our local iceberg and frequent REMUS navigation hazard.|
The Crystal Symphony cruise ship came to visit us today. Since there are about 1,000 people on board, there was no way we could bring that many people to the station. So we had a sign up list for 15 scientists to go on board the vessel and do a presentation for the ship. Mark, Matt and I signed up along with several other scientists and people from the station. We took two zodiacs out to the ship which was actually a mile off shore. As we approached, the passengers and crew were out on the upper decks waiving and cheering as we climbed aboard using a small ladder. The zodiacs went back to station and we got a small tour of the ship and got to go up to the bridge and meet the captain. The ship was beautiful!
As we walked around everyone was waving to us and taking pictures. We were celebrities for the next three hours. We talked to passengers and answered questions, took pictures and even signed autographs. The station manager and lab manager of Palmer Station gave a 15 minutes presentation in the auditorium and then the rest of us got up on stage and introduced ourselves and then answered questions from the crowd for the next half an hour. There were about 500 people in the crowd and they also had 3 other sitting areas where they were broadcasting the show in real time. After the question and answer session we talked to passengers and looked around the ship. Mark was approached to do an interview for the ship’s morning show so he left for a while and answered questions that will be broadcast on the ship this morning.
We were then escorted to the ship's dining room, where we had a wonderful lunch with appetizers and dessert with a full staff of waiters and assistant waiters to make sure we had a everything we needed. We have had great food at Palmer Station, but we ran out of fresh fruits and vegetables two weeks ago so everyone ordered salads and something with fruit in it. So if any of you are having fresh vegetables or fruit today make sure and enjoy it for us please. Afterward, we were picked up by the boats and taken back to station. Everyone aboard was very excited to be able to meet some of the people and scientists who are living in Antarctica. It was very special for us to be able to share our experiences and scientific observations with the public in a direct way.
I slept in a tent last night near the glacier. It was an amazing experience to be able to listen to the glacier cracking and moving and ice falling into the bay. I also had to listen to the 25 knot winds blowing on my tent, but I wasn’t going to have another chance to be able to do this again so it didn’t really matter. I walked back to Palmer Station this morning and started to prepare for one our last REMUS runs. Hard to believe that it is almost time to pack up and come home.