This week we focus on some of life’s essentials; keeping connected, our monthly medicals, food and of course wildlife.

Time to focus on some of life’s essentials

While the team continues to crack into the works program, some other very important activities have been underway around station. We thought we’d focus on some of life’s essentials: keeping connected, our monthly medicals, food and of course wildlife.

A very special anniversary

We’re very lucky here at Macca with a strong internet connection as it’s been easy to stay in touch with our loved ones back home. One of the team surprised their partner on their wedding anniversary Skype date by dressing up in a wedding dress. I can’t say who, but we think getting frocked up improves their darts game. Which is a good thing as the Macca darts comp is well underway.

Monthly medicals

Those who’ve been south know all expeditioners need to have a monthly medical. Dr Mal takes our stats and gives us our monthly spoon full of medicine, a fat soluble, slow release vitamin D. We live on a beach but we don’t get enough sun beyond maybe 20 days of the year.

This being our first medical, the Doc has established that our base line collective weight for the 19 on station as 1691kg.

Thing is, there’s a healthy competition between Dr Mal and Chef Arvid on this weight going up or down each month. And I’d say there are a few more around station that are keen to weigh in on this debate. There’s Scott the brew master, Fitzy the gym master, there’s Curly and Alex of the social wine club and there’s our committed gym crew.

Speaking of food

We’re a social mob at Macca and love to make an occasion of it with a few drinks, great food and a good laugh. Arvid continues to spoil us with amazing food every day at smoko, lunch and dinner and we now have a few regular themed meals with pie and take out Fridays, brunch on Saturdays and of course our social wine club.

It’s been six or so weeks since we departed Hobart on V4, so our fresh food is now requiring some quick processing to last the winter. Orange juice has been squeezed, drunk, or frozen, pumpkin and sweet potato has be steamed and sealed in the Cryovac, lemons have been sliced and frozen.

One of the more inventive ways Arvid is encouraging everyone to eat the remaining fresh fruit is his apple coiling machine. It literally removes the core and as you turn the handle you peel and slice the apple ending in a spiral, much like you do with minty wrappers.

While the fresh food we’ve brought down goes we have a new source of fresh ramping up. George, our hydroponics leader has been quietly nurturing fresh greens from seed. Arvid is very excited about what he can do with the salad greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, spinach, zucchinis, basil, silverbeet and capsicums that are showing great promise.

Wild life sightings

As our field training continues, we’ve been lucky enough to have some curious sightings around station. Wildlife sightings at Macca are very common, but when someone new turns up, we tend to pay more attention. George and I headed down the beach with cameras and binoculars in hand and came across a huge Hooker’s sea lion. This big boy was first spotted by Troy who seems to be the Hooker’s sea lion magnet on station. We managed to spot an ID tag on his right flipper. The faded tag helped Ranger in Charge, Chris, ID him as a 10 year old male who is a regular to Macca and is going to try his luck with the ladies.