Greetings dear readers!
Today is Monday, September….26? I think… I had a pretty eventful weekend and work and took on the “crap magnet” status. Within 24 hours, I sent B shift on 4 calls. It was great! I have also been dubbed the smoke and spill queen because I seem to get a fair amount of calls regarding inactive spills. *Fun factoid – if something is spilled, glycol, fuel, etc, we have to call out the spill team. It does’ t matter if it is a drop or if it is a gallon. Sometimes this is annoying and frustrating, but we do what we can to protect the environment.
Unfortunately the weather was very nasty on Saturday, -81 degrees with the windchill, and one of my FF’s got slightly frostbitten on his ears. He’s recovering though. Frostbite is a very nasty thing and seeing it first hand was a bit eye opening. A few weeks ago, two people went out jogging and got frostbitten as well. Don’t worry Mom! I’m wearing layers, just ignore the fact that I have ice on my face in my Ob Hill pictures. I wasn’t in any danger, I had taken off my hat to try to defrost my glasses and the sweat froze to all of the little hairs on my forehead. It is amazing to discover how much hair you have on your face when icicles form on it. I can’t imagine having a beard down here. I’ve had my hair freeze a few times when walking to work if I didn’t get my hair all the way dry, but it melts fairly quickly. Luckily, I haven’t had it freeze solid and snap off. Yes. It happens.
Today I went with one of our fire-fighters to hike to the top of Ob Hill. I’ve been getting in better shape down here, I’ve lost weight but I’m still WAY out of shape and need to lose, oh, a lot more. And taking on this hike with someone who is probably 130 lbs of pure muscle and a former marine, yeah… Not my most brilliant move, but she was also very patient and understanding. For that I was thankful.
Just the walk to get to the base of Ob Hill was challenging. Walking uphill, in the snow (I LOVE ANTARCTICA!) to the base of a rock/ice/snow covered mountain about an hour after eating lunch made me queasy. This impromptu hike made me realize that planning, might not be a bad thing. So Kate and I started up Ob Hill. We were heading up and I kept saying “I’m not gonna make it!” and she kept saying “It’s not that much further!” so I huffed and puffed and kept walking. Turning around and walking backwards so the wind wasn’t slapping me in the face was the only way I made it as far as I did.
The view was amazing. I FINALLY got to see Mt. Erebus, our nearest active volcano. Yes there are volcanos in Antarctica. Yes we live fairly close to it. And there was smoke coming out of it. But, there is generally smoke coming out of it. There are also times when fireballs can be seen as well. I will be going back up to see that. But first, I need to hit the gym.
Enjoy the pictures!