Priscilla – Ice cold traveler – Norway 4

Friday December 07 2007

Update…Friday, 2:50

With great dismay and anticipation we have just passed between Nelson and Roberts Islands on our way into the Dreaded Drake.  The ship is already rocking and rolling — and this is supposed to be one of the most stable Antarctic cruising ships!  I have not spoken to one person who is anxious to return to Ushuaia — and you know between Priscilla and myself, we have talked to alot of people.  Over the next two days, barring serious sea sickness we will be posting more thoughts about our experiences.

Some current thoughts ….

There have been four people on our cruise brave enough to go swimming, two women – not P or M, and two men!

We have been on some fabulous expeditions – of which we have thousands of pictures – I’m sure more than most passengers, mainly because one of us has consistently manged to be on the last transport boat back to the ship.

Who said there was no way we could spend money in Antarctica?  Oh yea, it was me!  There have been shopping opportunities at several research station stops or more locally known as “Tourist Information Center”. 

There was just an announcement made (in three languages)  “Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, we are entering the Drake Passage and it appears not to be as smooth as it was when we came over (Just for the record – I did not think it was smooth)  please be advised that we strongly suggest you take your medicine now!”  Priscilla and I did just that earlier.

Yesterday, we picked up three researchers from Peterman Island.  The one man and two women have been living in tents for five weeks studying the penguin poplulation. P & I had lunch with them today and learned some very interesting facts about their lives.  One woman who is the ‘logistics expert’  has spent several seasons on Peterman Island – which is very impressive until she says she has been to the South Pole many times, 8 to 10!  The other woman (undergraduate from Princetown, PhD last year from Harvard) is so excited about the statistics she has  accumulated that she can not wait “run her numbers”.  Basically, Gentoo’s are doing well on Peterman Island, but the Adelie are declining.   At our last stop (9:00 am this morning) in Yankee Harbor, she and her collegues did a quick count (of course up in the mountain and in rookeries from which we were restricted) and found just the opposite information.  The winter there had been so severe that the Gentoo population is in serious decline.

One quizz question;

How many photographs have both P & I taken over the course of the last 8 days?  Also how many hours of video?

For the younger readers;

Draw a PolarCirkel boat.  How many people does it hold?  How fast can it go?  Can you get wet on this boat?

More later………P & M

Posted from Norway:

posted Friday December 2007

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