Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Gears

Mikhail came pick me up and we drove to the hangar where they store all the equipments are gears for the trip. It's not a huge hangar, small rather. There are a few beds inside. I guess the Russian really do it thrifty way. I finally met Victor. Apparently I missed out a lecture he gave yesterday. The communication is broken I supposed. Mikhail seemed to not aware of the lecture hence I did not know about it. Anyway, I tried out all the stuffs for the trip. A lot of them. They equip participants inside out, literrally, from underwear to outter, head to toe. Everything fits me ok except for the boots and the ski pants. The boots are my size for sure but somehow feel a little loose. I probably will opt for my own boots I got from REI and tested in Alaska. The pants are a little long (even tho it is the smallest size -- it's not good to be so "petit" :)) so they digged out the old stuffs and found one pair one size smaller. Those are ok.

Along came with us was Rima. She's from Singapore but probbaly grew up in UK. She speaks English with British accent. She's going to join us to the base camp and from there she and another person will do 20-something day expedition to the pole, unguided! It's really cool to be here and meet these people. Super driven, and tough. She will also conduct some experiments to collect weather data. I didn't have much time to chat with her. I will later on for sure.

I asked Mikhail again about the head count, still unclear. But looks like a lot of them will either have their own guides or unguided, except two participants with a guide (one is me). I will update once I know more about this. My guide will arrive to Longyear tomorrow afternoon, so I am not sure if I will have a training/mockup session as planned or not. Most likely not. This is not the first time these people organize this and yet they're still very unorganized. I will go to the airport with Mikhail tomorrow to pick up my guide and hope I will know more what's coming up next.

These are the pictures I took about two hours ago. Can't be more live than this, can it? :)

The gears I collected today -- the room is different cuz I moved to different hostel.

Me again. It's -20C but seriously not that bad because there's no wind

Rima is trying to sort out the fuel for her expedition

A polar guide for the trip (not my guide) - I didn't catch his name -- he helped find my gears

Outside of the hangar where all the equipments are stored. Notice the cars are very clean, not like those in Toronto in the winter.

A gorgeous morning


Anonymous said...

Khai, I have been enjoy reading your daily logs so far. BTW, How is the food overthere? I saw you're cooking some pasta, it's look yummy though, and wonder if there is any super market near by.

Good luck and Best Wishes

Anonymous said...

Place looks beautiful.

Though it snowy, and surprised to many buildings!

-Sreedhar Reddy