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7 September, 2001

September 7, 2001

Some R&R

After our side-trip yesterday to the North Pole, we are now heading back to Gakkel Ridge to return to the business of rock collecting (among other scientific endeavors). While we are traveling to our destination, we are enjoying a day of rest and relaxation.

Yesterday when we were at the North Pole, I walked around it in a circle. Therefore, I technically traveled around the world! (Maybe that's why I'm so tired today.) I did all of the things that I would have done if I had been at home on the weekend-- sleep in, watch videos, read, and work on lesson plans. Why, do you ask, did I work on lesson plans? Each scientist is giving a lecture to the crew and the science party while here, and I didn't want to be left out. Instead of lecturing, though, I am holding "7th Grade Science Class". It will involve doing science with food and should be nice and messy.

I did manage to show up at the science lab today just long enough to send my journal and find my North Pole souvenir cups that went down into the Arctic Ocean yesterday. As you can see from the picture, the pressure they endured caused them to shrink to the size of a thimble. They retained their shape and color quite well, though.

I enjoyed today very much, and I'm grateful that we had a day for reflection. It gave me time to think about all of the things that I miss most (family, friends, teaching, the West Virginia scenery) and those that I don't (cooking, grocery shopping, driving in traffic, housework). It seems amazing that when we return to our schedule tomorrow, we will have just 27 days left in our expedition. It feels like yesterday that this incredible journey began!

<> Before: I pose with my styrofoam cups, a styrofoam head, and in the bag is a styrofoam body. They will all travel to the depths of the ocean in the name of science!

<> After: Scientist Kyla Simons displays the result of the pressure of water on styrofoam.

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