May 10, 2009
Today on the white board in the galley, the instructions were direct - "Don't forget to call your mom!" And all the moms on station got a beautiful arrangement of silk red roses! Fortunately, I had my bases covered when I had my layover in Dallas. I found Mother's Day cards at the airport and mailed them before leaving with specific instructions - "Don't open until May 10th" all over the outside. Moms around the world deserve a year of Sundays to be recognized for their efforts, but the least we can do is honor them with this special day. Thanks, again for everything to my mom and my other "moms!"
Today was a full day packed with 15 dissections of the gunnari species of red-blooded Antarctic fish. We split into three teams to each dissect five fish each. We started out with Dr. Sidell demonstrating the proper technique for the collection of blood samples for a hematocrit count and to discuss the other samples needed. These were the fish that were acclimated to an increase in temperature without reaching CT Max. We collected retinal, kidney, gill, ventricle, pectoral, white muscle and blood samples. Due to Dr. Crockett injuring her wrist in a fall on the ice outside, I was able to step in and assist. I was able to collect the retinal tissue for our team, as well as gill and white muscle tissue. The process was slow, as we had to anesthetize each fish before we started and we were able to get two done before lunch and finished the last three after lunch. By that time, the ship (LMG) had returned with the whale team. They were all aflutter with news of their success and it was exciting to hear their stories and see the underwater video that they capture of humpbacks and leopard seals. That evening we had a great game of "crosstown bingo," where everyone from the ship comes over to the station to join in. Afterwards, the fishing team and some of the Palmer Station folks moved onto the ship to depart in the morning. Fortunately, I was able to get some yearbook pages reviewed for submitting before getting onto the ship where I will not have Internet access - thank you yearbook staff!