July 7, 2008
The day started with a briefing in the bridge with about 25 people present. Five scientists and 20 coast guard personnel. To retrieve the trap, Pat had to go into a 16-foot boat. I, along with two other scientists was on the Healy. One scientist was on the winch, while another was leading the retrieval. I was basically doing whatever I was told. When I was told to flake out or fake out the line, I said "yes sir" to the master chief on deck and then, whispered to the scientist, "What the heck does he want me to do?" The scientist told me to string out the line on the deck. Oh, "so why didn't he say so?" I was thinking to myself.
It took about an hour and a half and it was almost flawless. We successfully retrieved the sediment trap. Everybody was happy. When it was all over we discussed a few different ways we could do it to make it better. The scientist who was on the winch will not be available the whole trip, so later in the day his team taught me how to use the winch so I will be on it for the next retrieval.
A couple of funny things happened today. I made a pot of coffee in the lab. I was one deck above before I took my first sip. For about 3 seconds I did not know if I should spit, swallow, or pray. I swallowed and yelled down the stairs not to drink the coffee because I used the wrong faucet, which meant I used seawater to brew the coffee instead of fresh water. Later in the day, I asked Pat to teach me how to make some knots. We sat at the end of the boat in the sun for about a half an hour like two young schoolboys. One tying beautiful knots, the other who felt like he forgot how to tie his shoes. Eventually I got those blasted knots.
During midrats, the 11:00 p.m. snack, my coffee making skills provided the comic relief. Tomorrow I am setting moorings.