We received the news yesterday that due to the flow on effects of losing one of our helicopters our project was unable to be supported this summer. Namely, we don’t have the aviation support to fly the rest of our team from Casey to Davis. This also means that for everyone remaining on station, our only ticket out of here is on the Aurora Australis when it arrives again in February. Fortunately, we were always expecting to be leaving at that time but it does highlight the isolation down here. No one in, no one out, unless of course it is an emergency. We don’t need any more of those thank you.
So I had a bit of a sulk about that yesterday. Not only was this summer meant to get me a significant data set for my PhD but I was going to be able to contribute to a fantastic project investigating the effects of climate change on some often overlooked, yet incredibly important marine organisms. Its pretty disappointing not to get that opportunity now.
But there’s no point in dwelling on what could have been. Today we’ll pick ourselves up and work out what we can do to keep some science projects going through the rest of the summer here. Then we’ll work out how we can also contribute our extra time to helping the station community as a whole. Having no aviation-related jobs for the rest of the summer also gives some other people here on station a lot more free time so we’re not the only ones who are left with a very different schedule than expected.
Talk to anyone who has made a career out of Antarctic science and they will tell you that is the risk they constantly take. It’s a risk I am willing to continue taking to work in arguably one of the most incredible places on earth.