Life at sea always brings together a great gaggle of people, working hard day and night to find out the answers to some interesting science questions. But with the combination of non-stop daylight and erratic schedules, ship life also brings out some rather curious behaviour. Somehow at sea it becomes perfectly normal to walk into the bar mid-afternoon and find the Doc teaching people to suture on oranges and random bits of foam. No-one questioned us, when in an attempt to stay awake before the final net of the day, we happily constructed a creepy looking piece of cable into our dear friend Guiseppe (or as some would say Josephi). Nor did anyone bat an eyelid when they wandered into the computer lab in the early hours, and found a group excitedly buzzing away with a game of Operation. Thankfully it had been newly fixed by the ships electrical engineers. And what better to do when waiting for the net to surface at 3am, than to start a ceilidh, turns out that Guiseppe also makes an excellent ceilidh dancing partner. Then of course there’s the classic activities of movie watching at 3pm, the yearly hair chopping with surgical scissors, having a good old browse of Farm Machinery Journal and shoe-horn kidnapping.

Photo: Guiseppe

Photo: orange suturing

It’s important to get some downtime and rest from the hectic science, but without the surroundings of your home and the wild outdoors, just what do people get up to in any free time they have? Other that suturing oranges of course. Water colour paintings, crocheted jelly fish, decorated cups for shrinking, and the perhaps less skilled construction of Guiseppe the cable are just some of the creativities from the past couple of weeks. Sometimes, the best answer to long sampling days is to get some exercise. This becomes an exercise of willpower, human vs gym, a battle of managing to stare at the same wall dotted with random photos of holiday destinations. Fortunately, the ships hold makes an excellent location for circuits or badminton (with cargo obstacles), which is gradually becoming more and more of an ice house as we move further North. Then there’s always time for some music playing, with pianos, ukulele, guitar and the most well travelled accordion in the world! Fortunately the marine newsletter, Newslink, keeps us checked in with reality….

Best newspaper article read: ’64 Gram gooseberry”

Two weeks to go. The crazy continues…

By slightly sleep deprived Anna

Quotes of the day include:

“How do you draw a mouth for a shoe horn?”

“What would Guiseppe do?”

“No one likes to be that square peg when there’s a round hole”

“A daisy with an iceberg, a cheese sandwich has gone adrift”

“If you were one of these critters, which one would you be?”

“What’s your favourite tractor?”

“What is a Charlie horse?”

“What are you doing?” … “Making mouths”

“I think copepods just came out my nose when I sneezed”

Googled today (on the rare occasion we could connect to the internet:

“Mouth templates”

“Dog in boots”

“Bizarre animal facts”

“How do you spell Josephi?”

“Gaibaldi”

Totals of the day (warning: extrapolated from limited dataset):

Crosswords: 34

Cups of tea/coffee drunk: 256

Tea/coffee spillages: 5

Bowls of porridge: 18

Wire out: 5800 m

Bags of peanuts eaten: 28

By Ross, Jen and Anna

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