Antarctica Dispatch

Journal of my Antarctic experience working to support the United States Antarctic Program.

Dirty Work


Unlike McMurdo, which swells to over 1200 people during the 'summer' months (November-February), the South Pole station only gets up to a little above 250. McMurdo has janitorial staff. We do not. So every Saturday we do something called 'HouseMouse'. Every department (and science personnel) have an assigned area to clean. During the 'wintertime' we rotate through the various rooms, hallways, etc. It amazes me how dirty the floor gets when there is no dirt here.

In addition, during the summer, we'd have 3 DAs (Dining Attendants) who help keep the Galley area clean, wash dishes, etc. Sometimes after work I'd help out. Well for the Winter we don't have these, so the 64 of us rotate through. It's a change from the daily routine, but at the end of it everyone is exhausted from his/her day in the 'Dish Pit'. This last Tuesday was my day. The shift runs from 10 AM to 8 PM. Most people sleep in, but I still have work to get done, so I was working from 7 AM. As usual on these days, I fell into bed. Hopefully that was my last time in the kitchen.


At Thursday, August 10, 2006 2:00:00 PM, Blogger Greg Barton said...

For four years in college I was on a work study scholarship. My freshman year I was put on kitchen duty, mostly in the dish room. After that I had my choice of what I could do. I kept doing dishes. :) Nothing like a little mindless work now and again.


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