Science amongst the waves

We have left the South Shetland Islands and are bound for Signy Island in the South Orkney Islands. Today consisted of various stops at sea to collect and deploy scientific devices that the Liverpool and Southampton scientists on board are working with. The Chief Scientific Officer, Mags, also gave me a tour of the science area which was interesting to find out about the work that is currently being done out here. It’s also interesting to compare the size of the equipment on board with what we had been using on King George Island – our corers, water samplers and such like are miniature dolls house versions compared to the huge pieces of kit on board here! We stopped for more measurements after lunch and I wandered out on deck to watch a huge flock of Cape petrels, and white chinned petrels, which were bobbing on the waves and flying around the ship keeping us company in an otherwise deserted stretch of water seemingly in the middle of nowhere.

For lunch I had my first fish since the sushi we had on our last night in Punta back in October, something of a novelty. Dinner was prawn cocktail (with lettuce, cucumber and tomato – again the first since October and even more exciting being salad that I had been craving!), roast Falkland Island lamb, spinach, cauliflower, roast potatoes, gravy and mint sauce, baked rice pudding, cheese and biscuits. The food is amazing on board, we are really being spoilt! I even treated myself to a gin and tonic while networking with the other scientists in the Officers and Scientists lounge in the evening! Such decadence but I think justified after our hard-working field season.

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