Friday, September 11, 2009
I am writing this from McMurdo Station Antarctica. Fishing season is over for me. Actually ended about a month ago when I left Colorado for the east coast.
The trip to visit friends and family was a good one. My friends are looking older and a little more adult like. Kind of freaked me out a little. Kids and mortgages really make the top of the list as the years roll past.
I enjoyed seeing all of them. A friend of mine said that I looked relaxed. I laughed at him and said "I should look relaxed, I have not worked for months and I have been fishing just about every day." He smiled and agreed.
So like I said. I am writing from the most southern continent on the planet. I think the temp is somewhere in the -30 range. We have seen it bottom out around 90 below already this year. That is the wind chill not the ambient temp. Still a sharp shock to the face when you head outside. All the days on the H2O this summer serve as a mental rolodex of images that I flip through often down here. I am glad to be back working and making a paycheck again. I am trying to avoid the temptation to daydream about trout,streamers,tarpon,permit,cold beer,and all of the other things in my life that I do when it is warm.
So for all 3 of you that read this I will tell you a little about McMurdo. Right now we have some snow on the ground. May seem like a shock that I mention that at all. In the middle of the austral summer we are dealing with more blowing dust than blowing snow. The snow melts and the brown ground beneath us makes the place look more like a mining town than what you might expect down here. We are on an island in the Ross Sea. Actually not on the continent of Antarctica. You could make the case that due to the permanent ice shelf that extends from the continent to us we are connected to Antarctica. For anyone who disputes this trivial detail I say go stuff yourself.
Anyway. I am here for about 6 months. 6 months of working 6 days a week 10 hours a day. Sounds a bit like a sentence. Feels a bit like one too on some days. I like my job though. I say that now as I sit in a warm building with fingers that are not too cold to type. There are other days when I cant feel my fingers that I wonder where I went wrong. How the @!#$ did I end up down here??!! I can not explain the cold any other way than to say that it, to me is just different levels of pain. The colder it is the more painful it seems to be on my skin. Well at least until you lose the feeling in your fingers. Seems to almost always hurt the face when on a tower. O.K> not all the time but at least those are the times I remember the most. So like I said 6 months down here. I will do my best to hold off thoughts of travel and fish for at least a few more weeks.
I have my complete fly fishing arsenal in storage in New Zealand. I will fish again in a few months. I just have to make it through the next few months first.