Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Home sweet home . . .

A bird house.

I might move into that birdhouse. I haven't seen a single bird yet so I'd have plenty of room to move around. The skua should come when the weather warms up and are notoriously better at grabbing food off your tray than a boardwalk seagull.

My home for the next five months is a coed dormitory. It might have adults, but it has all the making of a college dorm. Everyone tries to decorate their space to look it different. Everyone rearranges it to maximize space. There isn't enough room. Everything is communal, and you just make do.

The building I am in, 155, is actually more than a dorm. It hold the galley, recreation offices, finance, HR, broadcasting, a store, laundry, computer lab, and a couple other things I'm sure I am forgetting about along Route 1.

Building 155. The white area on the right is where the galley starts.

Route 1. Computer lab in the first opening.

There are people working around the clock to make this base work. For the night shifts, most do it for six weeks straight. Then they get the chance at Christmas to switch over to day. No thank you to both. I'll just work days. Because so many people have odd schedules and it is very similar to a college dorm, they have quiet hours all but six hours a day.

Night shift worker's room who is sometimes the roommate of day shifter.

Even though, I'm in the FnG (F'n New Guy) dorm, it does have some perks. We don't have to put on any more than pajamas to head to the sauna, cafeteria, store, laundry, etc. Even my bathroom is 10 feet away instead of the longer walk upstairs that others have.

"Ye Old Sauna"

Communal bathroom.

My room is small. I'm a roommate with two firefighters. We have the bunk beds and closets on one side. The other side is a lounge. It isn't great, but it works. I don't spend much time there so I don't mind. However, I wouldn't mind debunking beds. I've learned to respect people who make beds on the top bunk. Wow is it difficult!! If you have any tips, let me know.

The lounge side of my room and my roommate Kurt watching the news about the California wildfires. What else would a firefighter watch on his day off?

The bed side of my room. My bed is the one on the top left. My gyms clothes are airing out and the rest hasn't been unpacked beyond putting it in a stack so that I could put my bag away. My first care package is just visible above the orange shirt. Thanks again for jelly bellies, purple Oregon Chai, Sour Patch Kids, and so much goodness.

OK, this post isn't very exciting for me to write so I'm going to cut it short. I've been writing it from one of the Coffee House computers and listening to so a lot of music that I love and miss. I came in to Ben Harper's 'Burn One Down,' move on to the Black Crowes' 'Jealous Again,' then I heard some Dave Matthews and David Gray. I don't have any CDs or music of my own down here so these reminders of home are oh so good. Also, my office mates don't like music so I get nothing except for when the food warehouse guy underneath turns on his stereo. Lucky for me, he loves U2.

Tonight, I'm off to work on my Antarctic bowling.


  1. A friend of mine from up north here is headed down there. Left Olympia today. Her name is Shawntel, she has a lip ring and a bad knee. I know there's a lot of people, but hey, why not, right?

    Glad you're having so much fun. Bring me back a pet penguin? Or a snow cone?

  2. Day sleeper? Isn't everyone a day sleeper to one degree or another? When is your last sunset?

  3. You guys have electricity, right? Why didn't you bring your iPod? :P

  4. Ben,
    You are astute as always.

    Technically, everyone is a daysleeper. We run on New Zealand's timezone because they are our main supplier. Most of the departments are open between 7am and 6pm. That is considered day. People who work overnight are designated as daysleepers.

    When I first got here, if you stayed up until 2:30am you could see some sunset/rise colors, however, the sun was just dipping low on the horizon. It wasn't setting.

    Our last official sunset was September 22nd at 6:35pm. The sun won't set again until March 22nd and 9:19am.


  5. John,
    We do have electrity. I do have the Ipod that Renee filled for me.

    The trick is that I don't like listening to music through headphones. Right now, no one is in the office so I guess I could hook my iPod up to see how it goes. I'm curious what she sent me down with.