Sailboats appear; therapeutic franking; the comfort of bunk

January 24, 2008 at 7:41 pm | Posted in The Practicalities of Everyday Life Out Here | Leave a comment

26th December

Conflict of schedule first thing – Maryshev and Orlova are double booked. (Rick’s penned alterations misunderstood.) But goodwill prevails, as it often does down here, and Maryshev whisks pax in from Dorian Bay even before they’ve finished swallowing breakfast. So Orlova’s visit, after Ricky’s talk, is not unduly delayed. All in good spirits. A group of ROAM-IPY students especially enthusiastic. Oh but I haven’t been able to eat one mouthful of (last bowl of) granola. Having maintained a cheery exterior, Helen tells me I’ve turned yellowish. After a little therapeutic franking I seek the comfort of bunk and weep silently before vague slumber. Helen and Rick restock shop. Hear Toonuka arrive with two guys from Vernadsky (Eugene and Stanislaus) who have come to fix the magnetometer. Dutch skipper helps adjust our aerial too, while pax wander the island leisurely. Finally arise from fug, joining everyone for tea and cake. (Trying to encourage/force the large sweet creamy one we  have been given on everyone first.) Helen’s Mum’s fabulous Christmas cake is multilingually appreciated. Helen cooks up beef and butternut stew. My stomach is in a fragile state and our guests too have surprisingly small portions. All except Rick out to chick hunt, and find one on far side of mast, near to Stairway. Helen discovers that our original babe now has a sibling – they are both being fed. We stand in the evening light. Rick is at the landing site on a garden chair, catching up with the base diary.  From our elevated position we watch the sailboat Anna Margaretha appearing from the Peltier. A soft whisper of brash.

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