We have arrived from See after three cruisin' weeks. I am currently on sitting on a bed in Portland, and I'll catch you up one last time. In our last three days of sea, we only had one more dive.
By the numbers:
By the numbers:
Total days at sea: 21
Total scheduled dives: 16
Total potential dives: 19
Total actual dives: 10
Lost to weather: 8
Lost to transit: 1
Worms processed: 465
Pumps Lost: 4
Pumps Rebuilt: 3
Dry Ice Coolers Mailed: 6
Coolers as Checked Luggage: 4
Worm Experiments Run: 16
No worm experiments left: Priceless.
After we got everything packed up on the 26th, we went out to dinner at a nice Thai restaurant and a local bar I've gotten to know pretty well over the last 4 years - The Portway. The tab was picked up by the PI's, as is cruise party tradition - Thanks Pete, Ray, Marv, and Norm!! We definitely did some damage to those kegs, as our party hit four figures over the evening. Wowzer. This was followed by an inebriated game of ping pong against my towering scientist friend, Ben (6'6") whose reach gave him an advantage so large against me that I had not won a single game against him under normal conditions. However, thoughtfully subdued by whiskey and physically mellowed by beer, he succumbed finally, and tarnished his perfect record against me. Horray!
The next morning we packed up the remaining materials into the van and split up into two groups. Pete, Adrienne and Charles picked up a Uhaul and drove to portland - mailing off frozen samples and getting a hotel room. Kiana, Heather, and I stayed one more night on the Atlantis to both save some hotel money and be on standby for any sort of last minute cover. Heather and I checked out a cute, but tiny and overpriced maritime museum in town and then went to dinner with Ben. Afterwards we found the Goonie's house - filmed there in Astoria, and climbed the tower to have a panoramic view of the vast foglands of Northern Oregon. With a fog ceiling of only a couple hundred feet, it was like a horizontal disk of Avalon stretching for 10 miles in every direction. Tired from weeks of work, a night of drinking, and little sleep on any night, i packed it in before 11pm, and slept past 9am the next morning - marking the most sleep i'd gotten in almost a month by many hours.
The next morning, we had one last breakfast at a cozy local dinner called the Pig 'N Pancake and then headed up to Portland. It was a (mostly) beautiful 3 hour drive down through the mountain trees and rolling hills and foggy cliffs of Oregon. There we met Charles and Pete (Adrienne was with her family who lives around here) and dropped off the U-haul. We said goodbye to Pete who flew that night and then we checked out 29th street in Portland. There were funky bars and coffee shops which we patronized before heading back to the hotel and lamely passed out. I was asleep checking my email, sitting up, by 11:30pm again. This time I slept all the way to 10am. I feel mostly refilled today, so I think I've recovered the sleep deficit finally.
Today we went to the Rose Garden and the truly lovely Japanese Tea Garden of Portland before having some scrumptious pizza before picking up our monster luggage (we're transporting roughly 200 pounds of samples back with us- which turned out to be monumentally expensive and quite a hassle at the airport), dropping off the rental car, checking in said monstrous luggage, and proceeded to the local rogue brewpub house where I am now typing. This. Right now. You're caught up. In fact you're in real time. Right now! Crazy right? Well that's it for this update. The next update will be a post wrap up with LOTS of pictures when i have faster upload speeds.
For now, gentle Sees to you and safe travels,