19 January, 2001
The early explorers of this frozen continent were isolated from the rest of the world, sometimes for a year or more. This is not the case anymore. Technology has changed. With the invention of telecommunications, satellite phones, e-mail and everything else dot com, people stay in contact more. Imagine if Scott had a GPS unit, things may have been different for him and his team. He would have had a sponsor from North Face and held his own web interview once he found the pole. Members of Scottís team would have recorded the event on digital video, streaming the video to the cyberworld.
Technology has certainly affected my Antarctic experience in many ways. I needed an extra bag to carry the 15 lbs. of gear that I ran through the airports with. Which in turn affected what I brought to Antarctica due to the weight limits when flying on a C130. Things like a change of clothes.
What did I bring? A Canon digital video camera which allows me to post my adventures, and my Apple laptop computer, where I can journal and post my experiences on the web giving people, like you, something to read. Especially now that the regular football season is over. I am also able to answer questions from people whom I have never met. Students, teachers, friends and others who have an interest in the polar community and my current mental state. Even my dentist stays in touch.
One of the e-mails I received was from a past Antarctic explorer. Only a few years ago she was a TEA parcticipant and had the opportunity to conduct research in the dry valleys. Upon my arrival in Antarctica, she asked me to find a spot in the dry valleys and ìshare my feelings and the experiencesî of this special place.
So while at Lake Hoare, I was able to find some time alone on a sun drenched rock; I now understand its appeal to lizards. Sitting here I looked at the incredible beauty of this isolated landscape, that only about 1,000 people have seen. My thoughts eventually turned to what brought me here in the first place. I think it is a search for freedom and experiences. All of us search for our own freedom and pursue that freedom within our own individual limits. Every journey is about the whole experience. It teaches us, makes us strong lets us touch enlightenment if even for a moment. Each journey gives us experiences that penetrate the heart.
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