What do I miss?
It was brought to my attention that I did not mention what I do miss the most while being out on the ocean so long. I would have to say that it is weekends.
Out here everyone works 12 hour shifts every day we are out. About half the ship work the 12-12 shift (noon to midnight or midnight to noon), while the other half are on a 6-6 shift (with a few odd ones thrown in, like the co-chief scientists work opposite 3-3 shifts). Operations go around the clock, with plenty of lights turned on when we are on site so everyone stays safe. The combination of shifts means that at every meal there are some people eating breakfast, some eating dinner, and others eating dinner. With twenty different nationalities on board, we get every type of dish imaginable over the weeks, so food items are not anything I miss. No, it is definitely weekends – the ability to curl up with a good book on my couch or sun porch, and not put the book down until I finish it. After 57 days straight (that’s 684 working hours, for all you mathematicians out there) I think I’ll be due for a few books!