Easter and blizz hit Davis with equal intensity. Also, tune in to Pirate FM!

Nick’s Cartoon of the Week

Medical and emergency response training

During the past few weeks we've held two training sessions — one a little more serious and detailed than the other, but both still very important.

Medical training

The first involved our station doctor, the lay surgical team and a willing person to be the ‘patient’ (no acting skills required). The team, under Doc Judy’s direction, performed an ‘appendectomy’ on Josh. Thankfully for Josh, while the team followed all the procedures as you would in a real situation from start to finish, they didn’t get carried away in the moment. Josh walked away with all body parts in position.

Fire training and Easter egg hunt

To ensure everyone knows where every fire hydrant, hose reel, fire extinguisher and first aid station are located, Fire Chief Alyce decided she would combine a fire team exercise with Easter celebrations. Last Thursday Alyce planted over 40 Easter eggs alongside fire fighting equipment, provided the team with numerous clues then sent them on their way to find chocolate eggs. Not every Easter egg made it back to the finish line — it appears some were used as an energy source.

On the job

As ever, the dieso team have covered a diverse range of activities this week, starting with the full dismantle of a ‘Rammer’ hydraulic rock-breaking hammer to investigate an oil leak (see below photo).

This hammer, along with two others on station, is attached to excavators and then used to break up hard rock, which is mainly done for the foundation work of buildings around station.

Another of our tasks, along with the maintenance team, is the clearing of snow from around station to maintain access to and from all the main buildings. This can be especially arduous after a blizzard has gone through. It involves the use of heavy earth moving machinery such as bulldozers, wheel loaders, bobcats, Prinoths and even at times, excavators to move the snow down wind and away from doorways and services.

Of course what it is really about is men playing with big toys and that can be a lot of fun.

Other station personnel have been busy with general station maintenance tasks and even Alyce spent some of her spare time in the workshop finishing off a few of her personal hobbies.

And last but not least: who do you call when you bog a ute in the snow? A JCB of course. Then who do you call when you bog the JCB? Something even larger! Thank goodness it stopped there.

Pirate FM 107.1

Having spent the last five months at Davis the most commonly repeated topic of conversation is about what music to play on the PC in the upstairs living quarters (LQ) area. A bad choice will often see an ‘offender’ having to run for cover and will certainly result in them being ‘escorted’ from the vicinity of the PC and not allowed back anytime soon. I believe ‘The Gambler’ by Kenny Rogers was finally deleted from the music PC due to many incidents of this nature during the summer. Music is something we’re all passionate about, and we all have an ‘expert’ opinion on it, all have better tastes than anyone else on station. With this in mind, a few of us got together this Sunday with the idea that we could get a few of our favourite songs and stories together and record a short session that we could play back over our local ‘radio station’. We’ve got two radio stations here, one which transmits whatever the slushy is listening to that day (Slushy FM) and the other which is transmitted from over at comms (Pirate FM). So as not to upset the slushy, we chose Pirate FM as our station for this experiment.

Myself, Corey and Paul decided we’d start with four songs each and took it in turns to introduce them along with the reason that we chose them. I don’t think a tougher decision has ever been made in the history of Davis station as to what four songs to pick — the three of us looked quite frantic for most of Sunday. The critical ingredient was to ensure that we captured the usual banter and atmosphere found on Friday evenings so we had to ensure that the regular thought provoking tools were present in the form of a dart board, some beers and a pack of chips to get the creative juices flowing. Funnily enough, this worked quite well.

We did have some ground rules for our Sunday session which went as follows:

Rule 1: No talking about anyone on station (subsequently broken within three minutes and numerous times thereafter).

Rule 2: No bad language (again broken within 90 seconds though reduced to only four incidents two of which appeared as part of the songs).

Rule 3: We can’t remember rule three.

Rule 4: No songs of duration extending six minutes (new rule founded during Corey’s fourth song which turned out to be a 19 minute punk song that he failed to inform us of until he introduced it).

We played the live session to the station on Monday afternoon and so far we haven’t been booed when entering the mess, so we’ve decided that we’ll try it again this week and have even invited a special guest to bring in their four fave tracks (said person is now also going through the dilemma of what four tracks to choose from). So between now and the next session we’ve got some work lined up. Corey is having online vocal coaching sessions, Paul is receiving ongoing treatment for potential Tourette’s syndrome and as we’re going to set ourselves up a better equipped studio in the aviation ops room, I now have to relocate all the equipment and the dartboard!

Don’t forget to email us your requests at davisradio@aad.gov.au and tune in to Pirate FM on 107.1 (if you’re within a ten mile radius of Davis station).

Cosmic Brian (Stu) 

Social times

When you don’t have a supermarket on hand to purchase Easter eggs you have to resort to making them yourself. They may not look like the commercially produced variety we are all use to but with a bit of creative flair and with tasty fillers Alyce, PJ, Sarah and Narelle were able to produce the finest looking eggs ever made on the Antarctic continent. 

And who said the Easter bunny doesn’t know where Antarctica is? We have proof! During the wee hours of Sunday morning the Easter bunny arrived at Davis, hopped down the living quarters hallways (leaving numerous white footprints) and dropped an Easter egg at everyone’s bedroom door. 

Who’s who at Davis

Adam Gurney — Electrician

What did you do before this?

I worked in the water industry for ten years maintaining water and waste water treatment plants around Adelaide.

Why Antarctica?

This started back in 1998. I worked with a guy that had been to Davis station in 1987/88 summer. He raved about it. So it’s been one of my goals since then.

Previous Antarctic experience?

I summered here last year (2012/13) and loved it. It was a short summer, nine weeks on the continent so I just had to come back and experience the REAL Antarctica. So a winter it had to be.

How will you spend your time here?

I have a few projects I would like to get done. The main one is a pair of bookshelf speakers. I do want to explore the Vestfold Hills more too.

What will I miss?

Family and friends mostly. Also pets, my shed! Just the everyday things like mowing the lawn, having dinner with friends, going out for dinner. Seems strange but the simple, everyday things we all take for granted.

What will you do when you get back?

I think I’ll travel around Tassie then head back to SA to do some renovations to my house. Or even fix my car that’s in a 1000 pieces! I think a holiday somewhere warm is in order too.

Best thing about being here?

The environment is amazing! Breaking through ice to get here, blue skies, wind and snow, wildlife, walking the Vestfolds. So lucky to be one of the lucky ones to experience this. And now the dark nights with amazing moon and star filled skies.

Wildlife and scenery

The sights, sounds and smells at Davis station.