Monday, March 3, 2008

Spartan casualties

Yesterday evening was supposed to be the official beginning of our small group's following of the 300 workout. Sadly, but not totally unexpectedly, 3 of the original 5 guys didn't show up. We picked up another person for their first time, and I'll be interested to see how sore-if at all-he is this morning. I now wish I'd insisted that these guys follow through with their proposal to have a $100 buy-in, and that each missed workout cost you $10. I think I could have picked up a bit of cash that way, but oh well. I'm in the workout for the long run.

I just found out that an astronaut named Steve Hawley is going to be joining my alma mater as a faculty member of the University of Kansas. That almost puts the thought of returning for another degree in my head, but I'm not sure if I'm really up for a PhD at this point in my life. It's a moot point until November, so I'll put that thought on the back burner for the time being. It is also down to just less four months until the deadline for the astronaut applications comes due, and it would be awesome to get any sort of positive feedback from NASA while I'm still here at Pole. That could be a great morale booster while in the blackest pits of winter night.

Our weekly station cleaning tasks (called affectionately: House Mouse) included moving in a bunch of bedding from outside and getting it in the laundry machines. As it came out of the dryers we moved it into the berthing wing I lived in during the summer, which is now closed and not heated for the winter. You wouldn't believe how cold those sheets and blankets were that had been sitting outside for days on end. And, you certainly wouldn't want to have been jumping between them with any expectation of getting any sleep. Rather, you'd just be going numb with frostbite extremely quickly.

Here's a pic of the downwind side of the Dome from back on the day of the new station dedication. Watching the guys take down the flag was vaguely reminiscent of Iwo Jima/Mt. Suribachi in my mind at the time. I actually feel like standing directly outside the Dome makes it seem smaller than when you're inside it, but that may just be because it slopes away from you and most of it isn't really visible.


Scott said...

Back to an earlier topic - have you been able to fit in any time to do the Russian language CDs? You need to find someone else there to do that with!

EthanG said...

I've been doing my best to catch a lesson every day, but some just get too busy and I end up not feeling up to it. I could do a lot better with it, though. The cryo tech was in the Peace Corps in Kazakhstan for a couple year, so I have him to bounce Russian questions off of.