Happy New Year, McMurdo Style

Icestock at about 2200 hours local time, New Year's Eve... Note penguin in attendance (at this point I'm starting to think a guy in a penguin suit is about the closest I'll get to seeing the real thing). Ob Hill in background.

It’s not much, but it’s ours.

That would be Icestock, the annual New Year’s Eve concert by assorted members of the community who put together bands, practice (or not) and get up on stage while nearly everyone else watches them. There is also drinking involved.

Of course, some people have to make the food that everyone else will eat when they wake up the next morning and wonder what the hell happened the night before and why are they wearing nothing but half a penguin costume.

That didn’t stop those of us who labor in the galley from getting in on the noisemaking at midnight…

Getting our New Year's on

At the stroke of 12, a few of us ran out and made a ruckus… though truth be told my favorite thing about the moment was the angry skua (look between Brian, the guy kneeling, and Kelsey, the girl in the green bandana). We were on his turf. Now, most birds, if a bunch of bipeds show up banging pots, will take flight. Not this guy. The whole time my buddy Nelson was taking pictures, the skua paced behind us angrily, spreading his wings in a big show of the bird equivalent of “you wanna piece o’ me? Huh? You think you can bring it? You got nothin’, punk. Nothin’!”

And for those of you as weather obsessed as I am, yes, it is still foggy as heck, and yes, we were out in our cotton pants and jackets in 19 degrees (Fahrenheit). I for one was comfortable.

Happy New Year!


3 thoughts on “Happy New Year, McMurdo Style

  1. How wide are time zones in Antarctica? What time was it EST when New Year’s arrived at McMurdo? Can you run a couple hundred feet at the pole, for instance, and go in and out of the old and new year?

  2. hi doug… here at McM we’re on New Zealand time, which is eighteen hours ahead of EST, i believe. at the south pole, though, the joke is that everyone has their own time zone…

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