Post by Jeffrey Mei
Kia ora from the only Kiwi aboard this ship!
As I write this, we are at 58 degrees south, well past the NZ Exclusive Economic Zone and almost at our first float deployment (at 60 south). On our way, we briefly went through what (some of us decided to call) the southern Bermuda Triangle, pictured below.
As you can see, we were clearly trying very hard to entertain ourselves during the slow week-long jaunt down to our first float deployment.
Life on board is pretty sweet. Setting up the ship as the remnants of Cyclone Debbie passed through was probably the least fun aspect of the trip, but it was a good bonding experience for everyone, I suppose.
Food is great too – we get 3 (soon to be 4) meals a day and the atmosphere is generally very convivial. Everyone is on first-name basis with everyone else and people are all happy to talk about their work. This is my first major cruise (besides a little week-long trip on a small fishing boat in a fjord in Greenland) so it’s great to live and breathe science for 8 weeks!
One thing I did not realise in advance was the snack situation – naturally, everyone wants their own snacks and so the ship provides relatively few snacks. Except for Pringles.
I brought a bunch of Bundaberg ginger beers, though I am already halfway through my (very meagre) supply of 4, so I am thinking of how best to stretch out my remaining two for the rest of the trip…
There’s also an on-board gym. Using a rowing machine while the waves are rolling in the deep beneath you makes for quite an odd rowing experience, though presumably it is a more realistic simulation of rowing… The gym also has a stair climber, though I bet that gets used the least given how much stair-climbing we all do on a daily basis.
In short, morale is high aboard the NBP and all the science personnel are itching to start with their research! On Sunday, we are having our first morale event, which is bingo, and everyone is looking forward to that.