Reluctantly agreeing to hair cuts

November 27, 2007 at 6:35 pm | Posted in Rachel Hazell, The Practicalities of Everyday Life Out Here | Leave a comment

12th November

I’ve been snoring, quite rhythmically, and keeping Tudor awake, despite his painting marathon yesterday. Sea is rippling, wafting larger bergs into landing site. Crunchy snow. We hope a ship is coming in tomorrow.

So the paint-spattered cardboard is bundled up, dust swept, dribbles removed, stains scrubbed and omissions touched up. I’m assigned to sparkle up/groom lounge and science room. Many grubby corners excavated and much delicate wiping with a damp cloth, and remembering where artefacts had been hung before we moved them to decorate. Enjoy systematically going through all the bookshelves with the duster. Who’s been reading the entire works of Proust? Pile of 1950s magazines and plenty of the same era’s Reader’s Digest if we run out of literary matter. Finish by sweeping, including all low down nooks and crannies.

The science room contains an extravagance of material for such a small space; an array of historical, scientific and personal artefacts, with the Beastie (hugely important in the realm of Ionospherics,) in the middle. Carefully move each item, wonder what it is and how it works, clean/dust it, and shelf, and replace. Try to absorb and learn as I go
along: International Geophysical Year, Whistlers, the ozone layer, weather data… wowee. Screw information plaque and hardware onto dark room door. Sweep around there, and where Rick’s been tidying the workshop bench. After tea, down to the boat shed with Helen so that Tudor can explain his stock storage system to us i.e. Port Lockroy caps are behind this stack of boxes, at the bottom. The thought of re-stocking in a hurry, between ships is terrifying. Flee to warmth of bunkroom and write. Helen verifying shop procedures, so salmon carbonara (tastes great looks yuk) is slightly late, thus all the more gratefully received. Takes a while to heat up tonight. Having problems reaching anyone on the HF radio, and no news of the ship due tomorrow. Helen rushes in announcing a new visitor – Hello adelie! He’s looking anxious too, and wanders disconsolate, me following with a camera at a respectable distance. Oh it seems so lost. We’ve been here two weeks; no visitors, no fresh supplies, no shower… and d’you know? It’s ok.

Reluctantly agreed to have hair cut (by Vidal Baboon, one of our local hairdressers,) two days ago, but haven’t got round to it. One chilblain. Helen has brought ‘Poetry Please!’ and reads one to us in bed.

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