Antarctica #2 – My Birthday in Antarctica – February 2009

Continuing on the Drake Passage (Friday – February 13th)

-I got the best birthday present ever…waking up in Antarctica!  Our morning wake up call confirmed we had crossed the Antarctica convergence and also crossed the political boundary and were officially in Antarctica.

-This was the second day of our sailing and I thought the water was a bit worse as it was rolling and a little pitchy, but all in all…a really smooth sail.  For our two days in the horrible Drake Passage, we had amazing luck and had smooth sailing, sometimes called “Drake Lake”.  So all was good!

-We had a lot of lectures today including an hour on Whales, another on Icebergs, another on Penguins and it really made the day pass quickly and was educational.

How I Celebrated My Birthday…

-At dinner, the Russian crew had prepared a small cake for me, which a large chocolate triangle with Happy Birthday written across it in more chocolate.  To top it all off, there was a candle on it that was like nothing I have ever seen…it was like a blow torch!  Quite a nice way as the entire expedition staff and dining room sang to me with the lights turned off, so quite a fun birthday.

Antarticia_Birthday Candle Antarticia_Birthday cake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-Deanna and I started to drink some wine before dinner, drank another bottle of wine with dinner, and then I went outside for sunset with a bottle of champagne that I brought to celebrate with.  It was a stunning sunset and Deanna, Tamarin, Liz and Joey and I all enjoyed the champagne and sunset, all in the cold wearing our parkas.  I think sunset was around 10:00pm!

Enjoying champagne on my birthday - the sunset was 10pm!

Enjoying champagne on my birthday – the sunset was 10pm!

-We just drank and talked in my room and went through a lot of wine, from great bottles I brought, to good bottles others brought to a really bad bottle that none of us liked from the previous night, but  I told Deanna to save the bad bottles (as I figured it would be a good last bottle when none of us could tell the difference, but wanted to drink more.)   -And this last bottle did the job, and as the classy girls we all are, we started to drink this not so good wine out of Twillzer cherry licorice straws and as the licorice got soggier and soggier…the better the wine tasted!

The empty bottles we all drank into the wee hours

The empty bottles we all drank into the wee hours

-From that point on, the five of us enjoyed more wine and finally finished celebrating around 1:00am, when I carried the five bottles up to the bar for recycling.  Then I decided to place the bottles on the ground so they wouldn´t break, again trying to be nice.

Should I leave bottles on a shelf by the bar...not on those rocky waters as they would be broken for sure.

Should I leave bottles on a shelf by the bar…not on those rocky waters as they would be broken for sure.

Better idea, line up bottles on ground by bar so they were safe.  The bartenders thanked us in the morning for this safety

Better idea, line up bottles on ground by bar so they were safe. The bartenders thanked us in the morning for this safety

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

– Now this was the part that I was told about the next morning….I guess after we finished drinking, we all decided we should go for a walk around the ship (why???).  But I was told we went up to the bridge, where the crew drives the boat.  We all started to ask questions and Taramin told me that I was reaching for the wheel to drive the boat, but the Russian captain didn`t allow me.  I guess that could have been a little drunk driving (which I never do…but on a boat it was silly).

– The next morning all the early risers saw all the bottles lined up at the bar on the way to breakfast and knew we must have had a fun night.

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