WooHoo! The countdown to the end of the expedition has started! Having only 10 days until we reach port, though, is both exciting (for we'd like to be home already) and distressing (because we have so much to do still!) Despite how tired we are at this point, we're still in the full swing of science. Today, we're starting an experiment in a borehole to test pressure and fluid flow before we install the last CORK. That experiment will take 24 hours then we'll start putting together our microbiology experiments and get them ready to go down in the hole. Busy busy busy!
We've started to prepare for the end of the cruise already - 10 days is going to fly by before we know it and we need to have all our paperwork ready when we reach port. So, packing boxes are out and our inbox is filled with all kinds of forms - customs, shipping, and accounting - to close out our shipboard work and get ready to ship everything home.
As for my personal things, I just recently did my last load of ship laundry! Ship laundry can be harsh on clothes and I'm very pleased to report that my garments are neither threadbare nor are they too small - both of which were worries of mine when the expedition started. I've already packed a few things too - stuff that I know I won't need in the next 10 days. (How many hours is that?)
We're all very ready to come home but we still have 9 science days and 1 transit day to finish it all up so we're going to be very busy down the home stretch. That includes all our cruise reports! Eek!! The catering crew on board has been awesome at keeping us nourished with a variety of foods so that morale doesn't plummet in the last few weeks. For instance, we still have lettuce and tomatoes!! We ran out of fresh and canned fruit around week 6 (much later in the cruise than we all expected) but we still have a few fresh veggies in the salad bar. This is absolutely astonishing! I guess that special refrigerator is living up to its reputation of keeping veggies fresh for a long time!
I'll try to write an entry every day up until we reach port to give you an idea of what we're doing to finish up our work here and get ready for our land legs. Stay tuned as the days fly by! Who knows, we may still have lettuce when we reach port. No, wouldn't that really be a shocker?! :)