Not alone

June 4th, 2006

The other morning (Tuesday, I think) my radio crackled into life – “Rothera Base, Rothera Base, this is Lawrence M Gould” – which was somewhat of a surprise. The L M Gould is an American research ship, and they explained to us that they do a winter science cruise on the upper part of the Peninsula, but had come further south this year as they could see from satellite pictures that there was no sea-ice. They’ve been hanging around in Ryder Bay yesterday – we could see their lights from the base – but despite our invitation they haven’t dropped in for a cup of tea or a beer. I’m sure they’ve got a busy scientific programme to stick to!

On Friday night we played darts against Halley – by the magic of VoIP phones and webcams, we were able to see and talk to our colleagues at Halley, and confess that we had temperatures of +4 degrees, whilst they had -38 outside!
And they beat us at darts, but only just. We already have fixtures lined up with Bird Island, King Edward Point, and our American neighbours, Palmer.

Traditionally, bases played darts over the radio, which required a certain degree of honesty. Damoy station (a British transit station north of Rothera) once won an inter-base radio darts competition some years ago, for which the prize was a keg of beer. When their beer was delivered, they confessed that they didn’t actually have a dartboard!

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