After a fantastic tour of the Nathaniel B. Palmer — thanks Leighton in USAP Travel! — I met Captain Mike, and his son (who seemed blissfully happy that his pa was the big kahuna of such a vessel). The ship is huge, and I was pleased beyond words to find there are framed photographs by my friend Stuart Klipper hanging inside the stairwells, and in the hallways. It felt like a great connection — I can totally understand why Stuart loved his time on the NBP. It is a floating city of curiosity, and the mission of this town is Science. More on this later, when I figure out a place to download the images.
I’m staying in the lovely harbor town of Lyttleton, in a Backpacker’s hostel which reminds me of places in Greece. Met two other single women, one 28 and one 31, tramping alone throughout the South Island themselves. One is Australian and one is German, but we got along like sisters in the dorm as we talked until we fell asleep.
Word in the local pub is that the Palmer is taking on extra crew. I must say it crossed my mind more than twice! Also, I keep thinking about the advertisement for crew, quite possibly apocryphal, but attributed to Ernest Shackleton, as he organized his Antarctic Expedition:
“Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold, long hours of complete darkness. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in event of success.”