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Journals 2007/2008

Mark Goldner
Heath School, Brookine, MA

"Dynamics and Transport of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current in Drake Passage"
R/V Nathaniel B. Palmer

November 7 - December 7, 2007
Journal Index:
November 7 - 8 - 14 - 15 - 16 - 18 - 19
               21 - 22 - 24 - 25 - 27 - 28 - 29
December 2 - 4 - 5 - 6

Additional Resources

December 4, 2007
Channel Fever or Groundhog Day?

55° 5' S, 64° 32' W
Temp 4°C / Windchill -12°C
Wind at 30 knots, gusting to 40 / Seas at 12-15 feet

We have one more day of science to go, and another day reserved to make sure we get back to Punta Arenas by Friday morning. We're very close to the end, and at this point it's clear that I'm suffering from "Channel Fever." This is the term that seagoing folk use to describe the intense restlessness you feel when you're close to the end of an ocean voyage. It's exacerbated by the fact that there's very little for me to do. All the CPIES have been deployed, and even as we continue to take CTD casts in the Northern Drake, we're not collecting that many actual water samples for me to test. Occasionally there's a "packing up" job for me to help out with, but mostly I find myself waiting, talking, reading, napping. It's a bit of an anticlimactic way to end this trip, but so it goes.

This picture shows a pose I've become a bit too accustomed to, a late afternoon nap!
One of the many diversions to get us through the slow times. Rachel and Kathleen with the bubble maker.

For the past several days, it also has felt a bit like the movie "Groundhog Day." Every morning we wake up to the same routine. The only difference seems to be the date on the calendar. Days here run together. The same work gets done, and the same routine is followed. And, as there is less and less to do, restlessness has taken over many of us. After a few weeks of the same routine, I am definitely looking forward to getting back into the rhythm of the workweek when I get home.

Some of the large waves from today's unexpectedly rough seas. The rough weather delayed some of the CTD casts this evening.
Chief Scientist Terri Chereskin, the proud owner of CPIES #119, just before its deployment

So, not much new to report here on the Drake. Tomorrow or Thursday I'll post my final entry on this blog, and then I head back up to Boston to return to my normal life!

To complete the "Forrest Gump" quality of this blog, here's me driving the boat.