1 December, 2001
ARRIVAL IN MCMURDO
We arrived in McMurdo at 5pm on the 30th. The C-130 landed without a hitch. The landing field is literally an ice field. There is no land under this ice. When it melts each summer, they must move the landing field to a different location.
We are met by a driver with a terrabus--a gigantic bus on top of what appears to be giant tractor treads. The bus holds all 50 of us, and although the driver is careful, the terrabus does a "180", and we almost spin into a large pallet rack out on the runway. Our first Antarctic adventure!
Once in McMurdo Station we attend the Welcome Orientation and are assigned our dorm rooms. The dorms are very similar to college dorms--four to a room with a communal bathroom/shower down the hall. The room is cozy enough and gets very dark at night (no windows), so we have no problem sleeping in spite of the 24 hours of sunlight here.
Because we will not be stationed in McMurdo, but out in the fields, we are put in "temporary housing" which is great because we're also in the same building as the cafeteria. The cafeteria, again, is very much like a college dining hall. It's self-serve, all-you-can-eat, and free to visiting science teams. The food is not bad, although there often is a shortage of fruits and vegetables (freshies).
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