Today I learned something really cool that helped me realize how unique this experience is. I am the second youngest female to ever winter over at the South Pole. The best part is, the youngest female (who is there right now), was also 22 years old when she went and her birthday is 2 weeks after me! I was so close to being the youngest. Oh well, second is pretty awesome too!
I woke up at 4:50 am and took my last long hot shower for 13 months. I am allowed 4 minutes of water per week, but I am able to break that up however I want. The most common option is two two-minute showers a week, but for working out I am considering four thirty second showers and then one 2 minute shower to wash my hair each week. For my sisters, that is enough to keep them from ever considering this job. Well, that and a few other things… they prefer the positive temperatures.
We then got on the shuttle and went to the CDC. We all had to put on all our gear and weigh everything we are taking with us. I went from 165 lbs to 204 lbs with my gear and carry on bag. My checked bags only weighed 83 lbs, but the max weight for winter overs is 110 lbs.
Next, we watched a video about the importance of recycling trash properly in an attempt to reduce landfill waste and help keep Antarctica clean. We are not allowed to pour anything out outside and if something does spill, it is our job to make sure it gets cleaned properly. The most important is properly disposing of hazardous waste.
After we did all of that, we got on a bus (we were all sweating in our cold weather gear) and were delivered to the plane. Which, brings me back to sitting here starring at cargo with my earplugs. We have a 5 hour flight.
They are letting us take turns going into the cockpit.