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26 February, 2001

Name for Rabbit

-066 01 lat 093 38 long

Last night we had a clear night and the stars shone beautifully, I saw Orion on his head with Betelgeuse on the horizon. For the first time I saw the southern cross, directly overhead. We even saw a satellite move slowly to the north. I wondered if it was the one we are using to send e-mail. But as I was gazing at the Milky Way what caught my eye was the most amazing thing. It started out like a cloud or mist in the sky but then it grew and spread across the horizon in an eerie green hue. My friend Rob Beamam figured it out before I did; we were looking at the Aurora Australis (same as the Aurora Borealis but in the south). It was so awe inspiring that my teeth hurt and I remembered "don't drop your jaw in minus 24c wind chill weather!"

When it was too cold to stay outside any longer, I went back inside both to warm up as well as to do my turn at watch. I was pleased to see many of the ship's scientists had written on post cards from a friend's middle-school class. I enjoyed reading what they had to say. It is always interesting to read others peoples' opinions of the same event. Speaking of students, I have included a picture of a toy rabbit soon to star in his own animation movie about "life aboard a research vessel." None of us here can think of a good name. If you have a good name, please send it through the web site address. On march 6 we will start filming so after that its to late to name him so let me hear from you soon!

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