The days are running together. I have to regroup somehow. People all seem to agree that the days are difficult to distinguish one day from another. Perhaps because there is no darkness to demarcate. Also people often talk about the vivid dreams you experience on the ice. I had some very vivid dreams before I had heard about the prevelance of significant dreams here. Someone suggested that since we are so close to the magnetic pole that interferes with your physiology. I don't know what it is, but I dream a vivid dream almost everynight (actually every sleeping period). Being here is still kind of surreal. Which is also a common comment. I can already imagine what Christchurch will be like. What a blast of aromas and organics it will be.

Last night I went to a small open discussion regarding global warming with a whole bunch of scientists. It was interesting to say the least. I have not yet formed many opinions on the subject other than it is clear that we are warming rather than staying the same temerature or getting colder. It is not yet warmer than what we would predict the periodical climate change would suggest. There is a lot more C02 in the atmosphere. Other than that, I am still unsold on anything.

I had fall protection training yesterday (I think it was). I am good to go up towers. The tallest tower on the continent is about 100 feet high. I doubt I will have to climb anything 20 feet high let alone a hundred foot tower. There is a lot of competition to get to do the climbing on something like that around here. I did figure out how my brain plays tricks on me an height. I have to concentrate on horizontal planes rather that vertical ones. Sometimes the vertical lines are obvious and the horizontal ones are hidden.

Tonight was my first "Hut" visit. I walked the 15 minutes over to Discovery Hut with a keyholder to get in and look around. There was a guestbook to sign. What a thrill to sign the book. I feel really accomplished with that one. Such simple events really make an experience. I was there, really there. The following pictures are inside and outside the hut. Scott built the hut in 1901. Shackelton and Scott both used the hut in subsequent expeditions. Rather than go into the back shivering details of these early expeditions I will try and give you a few links. Of course the books and journals are best.

My impression of the hut was that it was almost new. In thinking about it I realized that 1902 wasn't that old of a house. My house in Victor NY was 100 years older than the hut. As far as houses go the hut isn't that old. Which meant in my feeble ultraviolet bombarded brain that the expeditions of these folks wasn't that long ago. It really wasn't. Antarctica is really terra nova still. The other impression I got was from the smell. It smells of soot and burnt seal blubber. There are frozen seals still in and around the hut. The blubber smell is slightly fleshy, but an oily flesh smell. It is not overpowering, but the smell does turn on the center part of your brain where there are deep feelings that only a smell can conjure. You can hear the coughs of the men and see the smoke and experience what must have been very quiet most of the time.

There are other huts in the area, but they can be a little more difficult to get to and gain access. I hope to get to both Cape Evans and Cape Royds. I have to plan for Cape Evans before the end of November because we can't count on the sea ice being good enough for the traverse after the end of November.


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