Archive for daily life

Welcome, Chesney fans!

One of my favorite things about this blog is looking at the “blog stats” page.  And my favorite part of the blog stat page is the list of search terms that people have used to find the blog. I’m guessing, considering some of the search terms, that the random folks reading my blog were really search for something else and came across my silly ramblings.  For example, the person searching for “pictures Kenny Chesney airplane” probably wasn’t too impressed with my post about being forced to listen to his music.  But I think the person most let down must have been the guy today who was looking for “roach poop pictures.”

Sorry to disappoint, buddy!

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I aspire to be a cool nerd now

Hey! Sorry I haven’t posted much lately, but work has picked up a bit. Using my advanced scientific observation skillz, I have determined a correlation between the increased workload and Dan’s departure/Brian’s arrival. Not that Dan was slacking off or anything, but Brian is definitely a tinkerer, and he has a long list of things to try to improve our data collection. I guess he doesn’t buy into the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” cliche. But I can’t complain because he did bring me a great care package from Nicole, with enough puzzle books in it to last me until the end of time! Thanks, Nicole!

Last week was the big changeover in personnel, and it has really shifted the whole atmosphere of the project, surprisingly. All of the big partiers have left (like the group who brought beers to the science meeting), so we’re a much more subdued group now. It also seems like the socialization is more in small groups as opposed to big events like it was before. (I feel like a sociologist, here!) It’s just like high school cliques! There are the nerds, the super-nerds, and the cool nerds. OK, maybe not like high school.

I promise to post more pictures soon. I have some good ones from the luau the other night. The dancing is really funny- it’s pretty much the laziest traditional dancing I’ve ever seen. It’s pretty much all arm movements, with a tiny bit of hip action every once in a while. The performers are the hotel staff, and they are entertainingly amateur, full of mistakes and confusion. Every week, it’s like they’ve never danced in front of an audience before! But in a way, that makes it even more fun.

OK, now I’m just rambling. I’ll post pictures soon!

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Visitors

Does anybody know if roaches poop? Because I keep finding little turds by my sink, and I’m trying to figure out what may have left them. I’m pretty sure it’s not mice since there are enough feral cats around here to make rodents a non-issue, so I’ve narrowed the culprits down to either roaches or crabs. I haven’t seen a crab in my room yet, but there was one scratching at my door the other day. (“Let me een! I weel pinch you!”) I have, however, been visited by a few roaches, one of whose final view would have been the Harry Potter book hurtling toward him at great speed.

Roaches are everywhere! Dan left his NCAR mug in the lab overnight, and one managed to squeeze through the little sippy slit and was there when he opened it up the next day on the airplane. Apparently one also got itself into a beer can he left out in his room the other night, so he was awoken by this scrit scrit noise of distressed trapped drunken cockroach. These stories have made me vigilant!

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It’s a hard day down

There are three types of days here: flight days, maintenance days, and hard down days (no access to the C-130 = forced day off). Right now we fly three days a week, with 2 maintenance days in between each flight and a down day thrown in there for good measure. It’s a much more difficult process to plan these weeks than I ever would have expected, because we have to somehow merge the needs of the scientists with the needs of the crew, which don’t seem to match very often. Most of the scientiss here would happily work 7 days a week with 4 or 5 flights, but are held back by the rules surrounding how long the crew can be on duty and how many days out of the week the airplane can fly. It’s basically the flight crew that allows us this non-insane schedule, and I am very grateful for them and their hard down days.

Tomorrow is our hard down day, so I’m trying to decide whether to go snorkeling or not, because the last time I burned myself to crispy crispness. I think it’s supposed to rain anyway, so I might be in here blogging all day! For the record, the snorkeling was very nice, but not nearly as impressive as the Great Barrier Reef. But the day was spectacular because it was just so secluded and peaceful.

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Changeover

So the one commercial flight into Christmas Island picked up a half dozen PASE people yesterday and left an equal number in their place. You would think that it would be nice to have new faces to see and people to talk to, but most of us still here are actually kind of sad about it! And not for the obvious reason that we’re stuck here for another 1-4 weeks, either. The plane took away a few people who were on the ferry flight out here, and we had all bonded, in a way. I guess being deprived of oxygen really brings people together. (Some of you have heard that story already, but let’s just keep it short and say that I now know what abstract terms like “cabin depressurization” and “emergency descent” feel like in real life.) For the past couple of weeks I’ve been spending a lot of my down time with the flight crew, who provide a welcome escape from the resoundingly eggheaded atmosphere. Of course, this means that I’ve been subjected to more Kenny Chesney than ever before. Oh well.

Maybe I’m just complaining because the plane took away Kurt, who was distractingly good-looking.

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