Twenty Tolerable Photos of Me on Ice

A caveat: I hate being photographed. Really. I prefer to be the one taking the photo or, even better, the one some distance away doing her own thing while everyone else mugs for the camera.

As I started going through all my photos of my time here, however, I heard myself saying “hey, that’s an okay photo of me” and “I like that photo of me.”

For me, that’s kind of a big deal.

Then I realized the only time I want to be photographed is when I want the world (or at least friends and family) to know: I was there. I did that.

I guess it makes sense there were a lot of those moments in Antarctica.

20.

Galley crew photo, Winter 2011. That’s our boss Justin “cooking” in the steam kettle.

19.

Not the best composition or lighting, but this is the first photo of me in Antarctica, August 2010

18.

Ringing in New Year-2011 with MidRat galley crewmates Kelsey, Megan, Sarah and Mugsy

17.

Self-portrait on my birthday, June 2012. The lights in the upper left are McMurdo Station. I’m standing out at Hut Point, midday, in the heart of winter. I had my ninja gaiter on–the white line is frozen condensation around the nose slit.

16.

One of those “I was here” shots, standing on sea ice (they put the sign up seasonally) on the Cape Armitage Trail, November 2010

15.

Who knew I made an unexpectedly attractive sausage product? The costume was a couple sizes too small though. It was rather tight in the buns. With galleymate Kyle, McMurdo Sausage Races, August 2012

14.

Our resident photographer/hunky Albert Einstein impersonator Deven (seated front center) took this shot of the Winter 2012 community at Midwinter Dinner back in June. Galley staff had about 30 seconds warning as we were putting out the meal, which is why we’re all in our chef coats and aprons.

13.

My Galley Mafia Day alter ego, Curtains the Cleaner, on the egg line. My favorite thing about this is the sign, by the way. “On a slab.” Hahahahahha

12.

In keeping with Galley Mafia Day back in April, here’s our Family Portrait

11.

Another “I was here” shot. I believe everyone who comes to McMurdo for any length of time must be photographed at the summit of Ob Hill, or your visit doesn’t count. January 2011.

10.

Posing with the most boring animals on the planet. Not a single tap dance among them the whole time I was there. January 2011

9.

Looking through an historic hole in the wall at Discovery Hut, used by both Scott and Shackleton’s teams, as well as others, during the Golden Age of Exploration. You know, before Facebook. October 2010

8.

The lighting is sketchy, yes, but it *was* the day before the final sunset, April 2011, when I got to drill holes in the Ross Ice Shelf for hours and hours as part of a route flagging boondoggle. Mt. Erebus in the background.

7.

Halloween 2010 with Larry as one of Lady Gaga’s many incarnations.

6.

“I was here,” with adorable Adelies. February 2011.

5.

Sawing ice blocks for a wind break during Snowcraft survival training, November 201o. I was pretty good at it. At digging my own ice coffin, not so much, but I had the block-sawing down, uhm, cold. Yes, that’s my beloved Mt. Erebus in the backgound.

4.

Doing my best Vanna White impression in front of a grounded iceberg near Cape Evans. I just love the moody light of the sky contrasting with the white of the iceberg and the black of the portly ninja. Note ridiculous bunny boots. November 2010

3.

Every time I see this photo, I laugh. It’s actually what gave me the idea for this list. This is me, looking exceedingly thrilled to be about to climb down a narrow, unlit, unheated pipe stuck into the sea ice to see What Lies Beneath. November 2010

2.

Point of no return, Polar Plunge June 2011. Photo taken by last year’s doc, whose name has vanished in my T3 mental mist (photo below as well).

1.

Half a second later, splashdown! (You can see my head and shoulders just under the water.) Yeah. I was there. I did that.

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