Gash Day. Now the delights of toilet cleaning and sink scrubbing are done, I've uploaded some "general photos of the place I live" that people have been requesting for ages. At first I thought "why would anyone be interested", but from chatting about the place on MSN I found my self looking at old photos of previous bases and found it was quite fascinating.
So, I'll take you on a Hello Magazine style photographic guided tour of the Laws.
Coming in through the front door, you are in the entrance hall. Work harnesses live in the cupboards and there's a massive stash of suncream to the right.
Doors, from the left going clockwise, are: Immediately left, fuel room; Straight ahead, the main corridor; Ahead and right, Mechanical workshop; Right, the boot room.
We turn right and enter the boot room. Outdoor clothes and boots are left here. It's hot, cramped and smells. With anymore than three people in the room, you've got to take care not to hit anyone when pulling on a wind-proof top. Gloves and hats are kept in the pigeon holes on the left. Getting fully kitted up and then not being able to find the last glove often leads to what's comically known as "Boot Room Heat Stress".
Changed and relaxed we now walk down the Main Corridor. Through the first door, turn around and drop skis in the rack. From the left are: Chippy's and Sparky's workshop; Entrance Hall; Plant room.
Now we turn around and gasp in awe at the length of the main corridor. More utility rooms are to the left and freezers to the right. Yes, we have food freezers in the Antarctic as food regulations require stable, regulated temperatures.
The first interesting room, on your right, is the kitchen.
The kitchen and dining room are linked. This is where we eat.
The photos on the wall show every wintering team right back to 1962. I took this year's photo last night and will hopefully get it printed and framed today! The computer screen shows current weather, forecasts and aurora predictions.
At the head of the table are portraits of The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, just to remind us who we work for. They're signed original prints from '62, handed down from base to base.
Across the corridor from the dining room is the bar and lounge. This is the social hub of the base, used for films, relaxing, after work drinks and parties.
Beer is almost exclusively in tins, drastically reducing the weight of waste materials compared with bottles. Posters from theme-nights and birthday cards adorn the walls, along with, bizarrely, a signed photograph of Kate Bush....
Further along, there's the Gym / Music room to the right....
...and the library to the left.
The library is well stocked, quiet and a nice place to relax with some personal time. There's also a phone to the UK if you're feeling flush.
We're nearly at the end of the main corridor. More to come soon.