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Saturday 21 October 2000
Mid morning we had our weekly muster drill - when the alarm bells were sounded all expeditioners put on their warm Antarctic clothing, got their life jackets and gather at predetermined locations - the helicopter deck in this case. The ship is divided into two muster groups - port and starboard depending which side of the ship their cabins are on. It was very cold out on deck - probably minus 10 degrees and there had been a fair bit of snow. Gordon checked off all the names of people who were in his muster group and then reported to the officer. The ship’s Third Mate then spoke briefly about life rafts and other emergency craft used for evacuation if necessary. When all the expeditioners were dismissed, many of them decided to have a snow fight - throwing snowballs around at one another. It was fun - OzGold and I got hit a few times.
We then attended a special briefing for Crew on helicopter fire fighting.
Just after lunch we were to have a gathering of all the soft toys on board - a number of us got together but the event did not draw many people and it also clashed with the opening of the post office - lots of people went to that to buy stamps and envelopes and things.
A bit later Gordon gave his talk on the history of Australian Antarctic aviation again - only a few people but they were certainly interested.
For dinner tonight we had a BBQ on the Trawl Deck. Our expeditioners from overseas were amazed - only Aussies can enjoy a BBQ when it’s -14 degrees outside and your bread and lettuce freezes whilst you are waiting for your meat!!
In the evening the big people had another party in the bar. This time it was actually a talent night - or should I say a No Talent night. There were some very funny acts which people put together. Because the soft toys were going to be paraded we were allowed to watch the performance - Gordon had OzGold and me on his head inside a funny sort of a woollen hat. It was a good place to see things from. My friends Olly, Millie, Syd, Dreena and the crazy Puff were there with quite a number of other toys - a pony, a Raggedy Ann doll, a Wombat and a couple of cute Bunny rabbits.
Planning now is for our arrival at Davis next Tuesday or Wednesday - depending on ice conditions. Fly Off not expected before 100 nm from the Station depending on weather conditions.
Sunday 22 October 2000
Some expeditioners and crew were talking today about having been fooled by some articles in the ships news-sheet. Gordon was having a chuckle about this in our cabin and when we pressed him he admitted being involved in the ‘scam’. See the special report "Making the news when there is none".
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