17 November 2009

Towards Antarctica

We hit the ocean swells again after leaving South Georgia. And again I
got knocked out flat with seasickness. Scopolamin patch to no avail; I
have had another 36 hours doing nothing but to lie as still as possible.

It's a bit of comfort, though, that many of the other passengers are
going through the same. I may be a chicken, but not the only chicken...

By the time of posting, we have covered most of the distance between
South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula. We are currently heading for
Elephant Island, but with little hope of actually getting ashore
bedcause of the sea ice. We have the huge advantage of having another
ship ahead of us, that can report on ice conditions before we get there.

Even if we don't make a landing on the island, there's a good chance of
seeing whales along the edge of the ice, so we keep our fingers crossed
for another good nature experience.

During a recap and debrief of our days at South Georgia, we learned that
our luck with the weather is almost unprecedented. We made landings at a
total of 9 sites; and one of the guides even got a first-time landing on
one of the more exclusive sites; featuring Macaroni Penguins, among
other things.

As of now, the ocean swells have either dampened down, or alternatively,
my brain has been sufficiently dampened down not to notice. Anyways,
there are many people out on deck photographing icebergs while hoping to
catch a glimpse of a whale or two.

I can't wait to start posting images from this trip. Hopefully I can
convey some of the sense of wonder from being here.

Oh, and someone mentioned in the passing that this is the very ship that
Michael Reichmann from the Luminous Landscape website travelled on a
couple of years ago. I relay this information just to give you a hint of
how used they are to accommodate for the wishes of photographers.
Yesterday we got a good example of their understanding for our desires
when they turned the ship to follow a group of whales for a while, in
hope of getting some good shots. The whales however, were busy and hard
to track, so eventually we gave up. But it was very kind of the captain
to try anyway.

More later, now I wish to join my fellow passengers on deck, in case
something interesting turns up.


Tim Øsleby said...

"Scopolamin patch to no avail; I
have had another 36 hours doing nothing but to lie as still as possible."

Bollocks. Next time Jostein, you say to yourself three times: "I'm a viking". Then make sure you have plenty to drink, go up on deck and stay there, until it stops. You will probably have a rough time, cleaning up your own mess, but the most effective cure is to fight it standing or siting, while fixating your vision to the horizon.

On second thought. Do this as often as possible, before it starts again. Especially when the weather casts are worsening. You need to get in front of it. If you don't, then you probably will be just as helpless again.

Sorry pall. You asked for my advice.

And don't forget to eat.
A flat bread an hour,
keeps you out of the shower ;-)

The reason for treating you as my verbal punch ball is, off course, that I envy you. I don't have your best interest at heart ;-)

Alunfoto said...

Thanks for the challenge, Tim.
A pity I was unable to see comments while on the trip. But in fact I did try to challenge my body on the first leg between Argentina and the Falklands. On the second day I tried to creep out on deck. It took all of five minutes before I had to do the paperbag karaoke thing. After about half an hour of repetition of the five minute intervals I was exhausted and gave up.

Guess I will forever be a "skogsmatros". :-)

Tim Øsleby said...

:) You did well.

You have my sympathy. I've been sea sick myself, but not very much, doing the sweating and feeling very uncomfortable stuff. But I have seen people being very sick. I can imagine it is hell.

I have also seen the same persons slowly getting over it. And I pretty sure you would, after some more days at sea. Maybe next time ...

Anyway. I'm really looking forward to speaking with you in person, getting the behind scenes from your adventure.