Welcome to my adventure!!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Heading Home

Most of us flew out of Churchill this morning to -53C temperatures. In Winnipeg, most caught connecting flights, either to the way home or off to another adventure. Some of us have an overnight in Winnipeg.

It was not easy to say good-bye. After all, for the past 10+ days we have endured some challenging weather conditions, seen some amazing displays of nature in the northern lights, witnessed the beauty of an ecosystem in a truly intense season, and shared so many laughs that it is hard to believe that we did not know each other prior to this experience. How is it that we have been able to work so well together....when we have come from many different places on this earth; have such different backgrounds, customs and beliefs, interests, ages, native languages, and jobs?

Is it the mission of the work that allowed us to work so well? Is it the leadership of the principal scientist, Dr. Peter Kershaw? Is it the intensity of the conditions? Is it the human spirit? I think it is all those things and more. I am feeling a huge sense of satisfaction and renewal as a result of this experience.

I am hoping that my fellow teammates will chime in and give some feedback on this blog and share their thoughts with my students.

For my students, continue to read this blog and spend your class time on Thursday completing any assignments that you have not posted to. Thursday will be the last day to finish any undone assignments.

I am looking forward to seeing you on Friday to share more of my adventures.


At February 26, 2009 at 10:38 AM , Blogger utproud said...

Anne, good post. The same thoughts you wrote about have passed through my head since I said goodbye to everyone at the Winnipeg airport. The sensation I felt when I entered my hotel room was sadness.

We spent nearly every hour of every day of the past 11 days with each other in some of the harshest and most isolated conditions. It's difficult to just break that off suddenly without feeling an impact.

I came away shocked and amazed that we all worked together so well. One story I told some of the group related to the photos. Midway through the trip, I asked everyone for photos so that I would not need to cram on the last day. I did not have to chase a single person for them as everyone took it upon themselves to proactively get me the photos in whatever way I required. I was floored to say the least. I know most of us work in the corporate world and know that trials of getting others to do what we need them to do. I don't know why we worked so well together. Was it that we all left our preconceptions and expectations at home and came with open minds and hearts? Was it luck and coincidence that we happened to have this magical chemistry? Was it that the time we spent together was just short of breaking and that people were holding in their true selves? I don't know as I said.

All I know is that the past two weeks have been very rewarding for me. I will talk about it with pride and happiness in my voice and do that often. I will share pictures and movies, simply because it will be so much fun talking about what we went through.

Frozen toes, fingers, noses; the sqweeky and evil chuckle of our fearless leader; the booze run; the endless jokes of pits, pukak, snow cores; mealtimes; Aurora wake-up calls; end-of-day lectures; kareoke; salsa night; early morning get-togethers; cookies; cookies; the arctice coridor; Carley; LeAnn; Jessica; Blenya; Kim; Don; Lucy; Steve; Steve; Jerry; Cliff; bunk beds; the computer room; samples and more samples; the Skidoos and Quamutiks; the bumpy and long/short rides.

At February 27, 2009 at 8:53 AM , Anonymous Rebecca Caldwell said...

Is modesty preventing us from stating the obvious, that we're fantastic people? : )

I think Dr. Kershaw certainly set the tone by being intensely smart but funny and dedicated but good-natured, and we picked up some cues from him -- not to mention the terrific other staff (as Sergio mentioned, above).

Does it come down to a simple behavioural choice: When you're collecting snow samples in minus 20 for hours on end, you can either try to make it fun or you can be miserable. I prefer the first one.


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