A special Christmas day!

©

26 December 2006

 This Christmas day, as we approach 84 degrees north, thoughts of our friends and families are at the forefront of everyone’s minds.

Position: 83?49’N, 135?27’E
 Course and Speed: S, 0.3 knots
 Wind: N, 10 knots
 Sea Ice: Slight movement
 Visibility: Good, clear sky
 Moon: Not visible
 Air Temperature: -30°C
 Water Temperature: -1.7°C

 This Christmas day, as we approach 84 degrees north, thoughts of our friends and families are at the forefront of everyone’s minds. With the saloon decorated and a feast worthy of lower latitudes on the table, we enjoyed a truly traditional Christmas, kicked off last
 
 
night with a visit by Santa Claus. Continuing today with another fine meal, this afternoon was naturally spent in siesta mode! As Nansen said in 1893, ‘To have a feast is the only way for us to celebrate’. Times have not changed! Although we are trying to relax a little over the “holiday” season, we can never completely switch off. There is always ice to collect, ice holes to drill and scientific instruments to maintain.

 We passed the midwinter solstice last week, a milestone even more significant than Christmas for polar habitants. This event marks the point in the calendar when the sun begins its slow but sure return towards our hemisphere. In two months we will see our first glimpse of sun above the horizon!

 Merry Christmas

 Grant