This week Ben, one of our resident sparkies, gives a fabulous account of life at Davis as experienced through the senses

Davis through the senses

Well, it’s my turn to write an article. It’s funny as I was once an avid viewer here, starting five years ago when my father brought me a newspaper article about “The Coolest Jobs in the World” and I would read on and off every Friday the updates of station life. And here we are, Station Update, my turn.

I could write a novel about the experience and life here but I know that short and sweet usually was my own favorite, so I shall attempt the same. I would like to express some senses of experience since being upgraded from tourist to Local.

Sight: There is no single thing to pick for sight. I have seen the sun kiss the horizon and turn the sky pink, I see the somehow vast spectrum of colour that comes from a brown and white expanse. I could describe so much but it won’t matter. I will just leave a couple of photos to describe sight.

Sound: Its 1am, you’re completing a fuel line walk during resupply (to spot leaks) and some Adélie penguins are taking a late-night stroll down the hose so you stop and watch. They stop about five metres from you and begin to flap their flippers back and forth, a deep stammer begins inside of their sternum and you start hearing the knocking sound get deeper and louder. All of a sudden, it lets out a howl (squawk?).

Taste: You’ve just completed a hike to Watts Hut out by Lake Druzhby about a 12km walk. You open the hut up and settle in. There it is, the absolutely polarizing Fray Bentos. What is a Fray Bentos? It’s something that can divide expeditioners and bring them together. It’s a pie in a can. As you slow cook the tin in the oven you get a weird sense of maybe you shouldn’t be doing this… but alas, you continue joking about in your closet sized hut with five gentlemen stuffed into it. Come to think of it, just like a pie stuffed into a tin… The pie is ready, you make your dues with your sins and pray that it will not kill you... I have heard that adding cheese under the cap makes all the difference. I may be convinced otherwise.

Smell: It’s weird that such a place as this has no smells. I feel like I might have lost that sense all together sometimes but then I… erm… walk past the seal wallows and I… Ah you know what, I might just put in that Chef Kez definitely reminds me of the good smells of life. Let’s leave it at that.

Feeling: Feeling cannot be translated into words but I tell you, it’s the moment you pause, look up while working, walking home from the gym or standing atop a 140m high mountain. You take in that cool deep breath of air and remember where you are. It’s humbling in its own right and makes me grateful every day to wake up on this beautiful continent.

Antarctica is something that I had envisioned but it’s also nothing how I imagined it. This place leaves me in a state of awe every single night (ironic because I haven’t seen night in months). No photo, video, story, book or person can ever explain this place to you. It’s truly something that must be seen. I have been able to meet and live amongst some of the best people from all over Australia (and NZ) and enjoy a place with so many similar minded people. So if you love what you do and would be interested in a near endless supply of penguin selfies then this is your chance to make the experience of a lifetime happen.

Lastly I’d like to give a shout out to all my beautiful supportive friends and family. Without all of you, this whole page would cease to exist. So thank you.

Lots of love,

Benny – Team Sparky