We did it! We’re here! 3 am check in time, 6 am flight, 5 hours in the air, 1.5 of driving from Pegasus (the airstrip on the permanent ice shelf, the sea-ice runway was too soft this morning to land on), and we finally arrived at McMurdo Station. Welcome home! It’s great to be back. Antarctica is just as beautiful as I remember, the sun is out and shining, the air is crisp and crystal clear, and I’m falling in love with this place all over again.
Markus, Rachel, and I have two days of refresher courses and training ahead of us before we can join Jo, Allyson, and John out on the ice. For now, I have already had two meals on the ice, picked up all of my gear and found my room (I still need to unpack however), set up my laptop for internet access, and haven’t had a giant overwhelming emotional breakdown – I am already light years ahead of where I was last season. Although, I have still have some military guys laugh and make fun of me for being so excited on the flight – things don’t change THAT much.