After a LOOOOOOONNNNNNG time traveling, I'm home, safe and sound! things were smooth, for the most part. The trip off the Ice was exciting but sooo uncomfortable. My team and I traveled by People Mover (I don't know what else to call it!) out to the sea ice runway. There, our "Herc", or Hercules, the C-130 was waiting for us.

    The people mover at McMurdo Station.
    The people mover at McMurdo Station.

    C-130 landing near McMurdo Station.
    C-130 landing near McMurdo Station.

    The ride itself was pretty uncomfortable. The plane was filled to the gills with people and cargo. All of us were crammed shoulder to shoulder, hoping we wouldn't be The One who had to climb over everyone else to get to the bathroom. We arrived in Christchurch eight hours later, at 2am, so glad to be off that plane!

    Inside the C-130.
    Inside the C-130.

    The rest of my travels via commercial airlines were uneventful in comparison!

    Now I am home and so grateful to see friends, family, my cat, my bed, and the end of the fall colors.

    I was talking to my teammate Rachael about how Antarctica feels like a dream. The airplanes are a portal to another world, a totally bizarre, icy, weird and wonderful world and once we leave, it feels like ... did it really happen? Or was it just a really vivid dream? We head home, thinking about our families and our lives, and then in the next breath, ask ourselves "Wait, will I ever have that dream again??"

    My Deepest Gratitude

    This will probably be my last journal for a little while as I get settled into the Rest of The World. As such, I want to express my sincere appreciation for all of you:

    • Team B-011, who welcomed me as one of you all
    • Dr.Rachael Morgan-Kiss - a delightful friend and tireless advocate for my inclusion for science outreach and education
    • My readers who have visited these journals
    • My family and friends who have supported this journey
    • The lovely and amazing people of PolarTREC - Janet, Judy, Zeb, Joed, and Ronnie
    • All of the people at NSF (the National Science Foundation) and many contractors at McMurdo Station who make the place GO, who make science possible there
    Auburn, CA
    Weather Summary
    Sunny and cool


    Rachel K

    Welcome home astronaut! Mission accomplished!

    Bill Henske

    So great to see you made it safely home. Looks like you and the team got a lot done. Now.... what do you think I will forget?