As publications specialist for the expedition, Kelly VonDrehl also serves as our social director. Knowing we’ll be away from friends and family for nearly eight weeks, a bit of fun is a real necessity. Kelly’s festivities began at the 1500 coffee break with a birthday party for “twins” Hiroyuki Takata, a micropaleontologist from Shimane University (Japan), and sedimentologist Jens Herrle of Goethe Univeristy (Germany). I can accurately report a good time was had by all.
What’s next? Coffee breaks at 2100 and 0300 (and 0900 and 1500) and movies at 1915 and 0115 (and 0715 and 1315). Some of us are better at the 24-hour clock than others. In addition to learning the ins and outs of the lab equipment and computers, daily lessons are available in finding your way around the ship (where’s the gym?), lifeboat drills, new-fangled, ecofriendlier plumbing, and shades of blue in Pacific waters.