lundi 2 février 2009

Novo Station, waiting again... - Jeroen Van Wichelen

So here we are, in Antarctica, yippie!!!!!! It seemed the plane was never going to stop on the ice, but at least we could get out and walked our first steps on this wonderful isolated outpost of the world. It’s just amazing we got the luck and opportunity to wander and work on this beautiful continent. But at first we couldn’t enjoy it as much as we wanted because we had to take part of the chaos of unloading the plane. The Russians are well equipped here, we sleep in heated 8 persons tents on field beds, we have normal flushed toilets (also heated) with warm water and a nice mess tent with plenty of foods available. We have the company of a selection of British and Norwegian adventurists, that repeated the race of Scott and Amundsen towards the South Pole, now hundred years ago and also of Pascha and Mascha, two fairly tamed Skua’s, my first Antarctic birds to see. Since the weather conditions haven’t improved in Utsteinen, we all have to stay at least 2 more days. As kind of an appetizer, the Russians surprised us with a touristic tour with the snow cat towards a nunatak nearby. We than became fully aware of the exceptional privilege we have to enjoy these landscapes and there are no words for the feelings we exhibits while wandering around on the rocky hillsides. To our surprise there were unfrozen lakes in the valley in front of the nunatak and a careful look on the ground beneath our feet revealed many lichens and even mosses. Cyrille was already thrilled with excitement and was turning stones in look for his precious springtails, but only mites turned up, amazing that these little animals can thrive out here. After a play of cards, we were ready for our first ‘night’ on the ice, tired but so happy!

Jeroen van Wichelen

4 commentaires:

  1. Dear Jeroen,
    it's good to hear that you guys are doing fine!
    We're just back from the ASLO meeting in Nice, which was most exciting and very "mediteranean" with lunch breaks on the sunny terrasses of cours saleya. Today we can chare your frozen thoughts, as it is snowing in Belgium. Take care, Nicolas VO

  2. Hiya jeroen,

    looks like a luxury holiday when i read the stories! You enjoy yourself


  3. Dag mijn broerke,
    Het doet ons deugd jou zo gelukkig te zien op de foto's. Ik sta er van versteld dat jij die zo ver weg bent toch zo dicht bij ons zijt. Het is leuk dat we alles zo'n beetje kunnen volgen. Elke dag kijken we na of er al iets is bijgekomen op de webblog. En dan kijken we samen naar de mooie foto's. Gisteren hebben we lichtmis gevierd met lekkere pannekoeken. Oma en grootva waren er ook. In gedachten waren we bij jou. Alleé broerke, ik mis je toch al een beetje en doet da daar goe hé. Dikke kus, je zusje.

  4. Hoi Jeroen,

    Zo tof zeg. Ik wou dat ik daar ook was. Maar op deze manier is het toch ook leuk om te zien hoe jullie het daar stellen. Zeker met die foto's...

    tot later,