Day 33–Oh Cruel Nature

December 7, 2011 11:21am

December 7, 2011

S77°54.494 E023°52.609

Elevation 11260 feet

What was it about He giveth and then taketh away? After yesterday’s hopeful signs, today has not manifested a whiff of wind. Since the early morning hours, the sun bas been in full force, blasting the tent, which makes for quite warm conditions; but not a flutter of wind. The morning was dead calm, and the afternoon has followed suit. I was hesitant, in yesterday’s blog, to address the mission’s objective for fear of jinxing it. Not that I am superstitious–it brings bad luck! But hardly were these thoughts uttered, that we are confined to stay put. A forced day of rest (and lost mileage) which turns into a housekeeping day, and our first game of chess. Eric spent much of the afternoon attempting to re-wire his precious Kindle which went on the fritz a few days ago, to his great chagrin. He has stripped wires from his head phones and pieced batteries together to give it the equivalent of an EKG. No luck yet, but we’ll keep you posted. I emptied my sledge to inspect the crack and re-organize the content. The good news is the crack seems stable to the right side of the front right ski. Since noticing it, I had moved the heavy content to the back to prevent a heavy load impact with sastrugi, a strategy that seems to work. Luckily, the sledges are beginning to feel lighter–what with one month of fuel and food less in them. I suspect they are about sixty five pounds lighter than when we started; the small bonus of each day spent–including rest days–is the weight lost to the cargo.

I spent an hour outside, and given the lack of wind, the very dry air and the full sun, the 20C below temperatures actually felt warm. But lesson learnt: wear eye protection at all time! The UV’s are also in full force.

I am revising our mileage per day calculations and cautiously optimistic about making up for the lost time. Dead calm days, like storms, should always be factored into the accounting. But on that note, optimism–sometimes idealism, occasionally naivete–is, by necessity, the additional member of an expedition. The will to make it and the belief that you can are necessary bed fellows on this type of mission. You cannot sign on without a positive outlook. Still, I thought we would break our first one thousand kilometers today. There is always tomorrow. Oh, cruel nature…

4 Responses to “Day 33–Oh Cruel Nature”

  1. Jonathan Heap says:

    Dear Sebastian,

    Well Mathew and I have gone through your house and sold basically anything of any value. The cash will be set aside for you in a numbered, lettered and sequinied escrow account. The planeload of dancing girls got delayed on its way to you because, well…they were still dancing here.
    Hope you’re feeling great!

    Jonathan and Mathew

  2. Daniela Maselli says:

    Besides the eyewear, don’t forget to wear sunscreen too. Full protection for your eyes and skin, you won’t regret it!

  3. BASILE says:

    Cruel, but Nature loves you, I’m sure of that… even sometime,,,
    Continue to be obtimistic and few naive
    Wishes wishes wishes

  4. ‎’Oh Cruel Nature’ is officially a ‘Polar Psalm: S77°54.494 E023°52.609 ‘

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