6 November, 2000
FYI answer for 11/05/00
Life in Antarctica depends on the weather. Planes and helicopters can't fly in the wind and poor visibility. Even walking into the wind is difficult for a person here on the ice.
Winds are the major weather problem here. The winds make the ice and snow close down roads and passes. The winds can move ice and snow away from one area into a drift five or six feet high, and it still looks flat. Trucks, tractors, and skidoos can end up stuck in these snow drifts, if not worse.
Today was supposed to be 'Sea Ice School' for me. Since I will be living out on sea ice when I join my team, I must go through this course. Notice how I said, "supposed to be." I awoke this morning to a full blown Condition 2. This time it came with the snow. It has been blowing, snowing, and drifting all day long. Another day that flights to field sites and the South Pole will be pushed back. Another day that Field Safety School and Sea Ice School will be pushed back. Another day that life at McMurdo goes nowhere because of the WEATHER.
What do you do when the weather shuts you down? I did some touring. I met the people who make the newspaper around here. All two of them. The 'Antarctic Sun' is published once a week. It is usually put out on Sundays, but the copy machine is broken, so this edition will be a day or two late.
I also found our television and radio stations. There are a few more people to run those operations though. Yes, McMurdo has TV and radio. The radio station is very computerized. The DJs are usually anyone who wants to volunteer. This place has many CDs, but it still has thousands of good old LPs (the big black circle things that go on record players). I was able to watch the Sunday afternoon football games...Sunday for the states that is. Today is Monday, remember. Inorder to watch the games live here, we have to watch them early. There are usually two major networks that reach here by the use of satalites and communication towers on the Black Mountains. The rest of the programs are movies that the television people have fed into our TV lounges through cable. Who has time to watch much TV though?
Because McMurdo is on the other side of the
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