Friday, 11 January
Hi, it’s me again, Nils. I wish I could report about something special or exciting. But I can’t. From my point of view, nothing remarkable happened today here on board of Polarstern. We benthologists (investigators of the seafloor) do not have a station right now, which means we are not deploying any gear into the water.
There is very little practical hands-on work to do. So I got up this morning, had breakfast and then went to my lab. My small room is not only my laboratory, but also my office. I do everything there. We investigate the communities on the sea floor with corers and nets, and I provide complementing images with my video camera. And beside the exciting practical work there is also some sitting at the desk in a scientist’s everyday life. Analysing results from the sampling activities, entering data into tables, analysis of images and a written synthesis of the results. Normal homework that nobody really likes, but that has to be done.
And so in the morning I sit at my computer and write text and fill tables. After lunch I go for a little walk on deck (trying to stay out of the way of people working there). To feel the breeze on my face and look at waves, ice and seabirds. Well, after all these weeks waves and ice are just what we see every day. You know, the Antarctic.
Back to the desk again. More paperwork until dinner. Our evening seminar, with presentations on several expeditions and their results, is an enjoyable change of scenery. The seminar is over between 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Usually I return to the office one more time to see if there is anything else that needs to be done. And more often than not there is.
Some time later that night I turn off my computer, happy because I took care of important things, and unhappy because I did not get everything done. Then I like a cup of tea with colleagues that are still up, and then I go to bed. End of day...
Even on the Polarstern, in the middle of the ocean off Antarctica, there are just regular days.
Nils Brenke, Senckenberg
Photo: T. Riehl, Universität Hamburg
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Friday, 11 January 2008 18:13
Just a normal day...Written by Polarstern Expedition
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