The small island that keeps on giving

Film festivals, masterclasses and a small shake to start the week

Due to the unavailability of various expeditioners, this week I have been running recruitment and training drills for potential fire team members. I’m happy to announce 'Stay' as a new self-contained breathing apparatus (BA) member in the fire team. Stay displayed some great qualities that are required in a well-run fire team including great listening, sitting and correct donning/ docking procedure. Her fetching abilities could do with some fine-tuning but we still have eight months to work on that. Better luck next year to the team of gentoo penguins.

This weekend was the Winter International Film Festival of Antarctica where we had 48 hours to film + edit a 5 minute short film that included 5 elements,

  1. Sound: The sound of milk frothing (i.e. steaming milk to make coffee), chosen by Mawson - Australia.
  2. Object: A hammer. Chosen by Jang Bogo - Republic Of Korea.
  3. Famous quote: "Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end. If not always in the way we expect." Luna Lovegood in "Harry Potter" by J.K.Rowling. Chosen by Neumayer III – Germany.
  4. Famous character: Where’s Wally?. Chosen by Macquarie Island – Australia.
  5. Action: Throw a bucket of water on the head. Chosen by Concordia - Italy & France

Without giving away the surprise of what we produced head to to view our entry and see why half of the Macca crew are returning to Australia to start up a new career in the film industry.

What do film sets require more than caffeine, make-up and bright lights? Food!

Our famous station chef, Kim D, ran our first food masterclass during filming this year, teaching us how to make two types of gnocchi – spinach and ricotta (ricotta made from powdered milk) and plain potato.

The small kitchen made it difficult to squeeze us all in, but we sure did try. Having learnt that Google has some pretty good recipes to use as a base, we were then set loose to roll out not too thick sausages and to cut them on angles. I’m happy to report that no “rubber bullets” were made and that there were no left overs for the “catch n kill” fridge.

Now, what gets expeditioners at Macca jumping as if there is a snake on the ground? An earthquake just before dinner.

This time around it was a “small” shake (5.7 on the Richter scale) and some people (myself in the gym) didn’t feel it. Thankfully we were able to finish dinner without having to run up to the safety of the high ground at Ham shack.

With expeditioners out in the field, boating parties taking expos out to huts and extra slushy duties (assisting in the kitchen), this week is sure shaping up to be a productive one for those lucky enough to be on station.

Thomas Wood
Fire chief, film critic, food taster, heavy machinery operator and the occasional plumber.