Meet our diesel mechanic Alex, and indoor fitness ramps up!

Meet an expeditioner - Alex, Diesel Mechanic

Name: Alex

Nickname: Alex

From: Earth

Any previous seasons? Nope - first time south

Job title: Diesel mechanic

Describe your role: Servicing and maintaining plant and power houses.

What did you do before you joined the AAD? Diesel mechanic in the mines.

What is your favourite part of the job jere at Mawson? The views are nice, and getting to help out with science.

If you were not a diesel mechanic, what would be your dream job? Something in space.

What do you like to do in your spare time? Gaming, and Warhammer.

What actor would play you in a film version of our 76th ANARE season here at Mawson? John Rhys-Davies (Gimli from Lord of the Rings)

What is your favourite hut for field trips and why? Have no idea yet as I've only been to two and need to visit more.

What is your favourite piece of AAD kit? Carhartt Jacket

What is your favourite book / movie? My favourite movie is Empire Strikes Back, and I have just finished reading book 10 of 63 in the Horus Heresy Fallen Angels series.

What is your typical 'Slushy FM' genre? I normally just let our chef Nick play his music, but otherwise, old school rock.

Describe your Mawson experience with: a sound, a smell, and a feeling:
Sound - The hum of the power house and the calls from the Adélies (or someone yelling 'Allan')
Smell - The smell of Nick's cooking
Feeling - The feeling of the wind during a blizzard

Do you have a favourite quote that you'd like to leave us with? May the force be with you.

With darkness closing in, we ramp up the physical fitness inside the Green Store

With winter quickly closing in around us, the days are getting much shorter - we are already walking to work in almost complete darkness! Along with colder temperatures and the notable departure of all the penguins and seals, many of us are finding it somewhat less enticing to walk around outside as much (well, at least until the sea ice is ready to start travelling on, which will open up a whole new range of activities) which is severely hampering our ability to work off the calories gained thanks to the skill of our chef Nick.

However, one positive of the encroaching darkness is the chance to witness even more fabulous displays in the skies above us. The sunrises, sunsets, cloud formations, and Fata Morgana mirages on the horizon over the sea-ice often cause us to stop and watch in wonder. While on a field training trip to Rumdoodle Hut this week, there was also the opportunity to take awesome pictures and video footage of the Aurora Australis dancing above the ice plateau.

Our gym equipment continues to be a good source of physical activity; however, to make things more interesting, we have also started to use the ample open space of the Green Store to great advantage. Weekly volleyball matches on Wednesday nights - with some good-natured heckling - were the first to kick off. While the court, the net, and our skills are far from professional level (okay, it would be hard to even describe them as amateur level), it is great fun and a good workout.

This week, the newly formed Mawson Indoor Climbing Club members were all taken through two-hour sessions of instruction on safe climbing and belaying by our Field Training Officer, Dave. With calls of 'climber ready', 'on belay', and 'climb on' . . . along with the occasional 'I'm falling!' (this is just losing your grip - the rope safely catches you) our muscles were quickly put to use. A few, such as Ben, Albert, and Jimmy, quickly demonstrated their skill on the wall. In contrast, others will need to build their grip strength and toe holds before taking on any speed climbing competitions.

Cat (Mawson SL)