- It’s dry down South. Dessicatingly dry. Your lips will peel despite repeated applications of chapstick and eventually you’ll look like a slightly deranged Hannibal Lecter, constantly chewing on your lips and pulling great chunks of skin off. When you finally look properly at your legs for the first time in days (rather than the glances in the shower) you realise that the skin is so dry that it looks faintly like the Gobi desert after a really parched year- cracked and flaky. Lovely eh? And then of course there is the static. It’s so dry down here that sparks are created by the smallest amount of friction on any surface. Walking the foot to my bathroom door this morning meant that I lost enough electrons to generate a wee arc as my hand reached out for the metal door handle. Ouch. Noses bleed, heels crack and all the rough tough sailors have their own favourite brands of body butter. The reason for this dryness? The icebergs suck the moisture out of the atmosphere.
- Sleeping at night will be a problem. Your body rolls about constantly on the mattress unless you assume the superman-in-freefall position. And then dig your toenails in. As Mike, our radio officer, points out on his website (check it out if you haven’t already- gm0hcq into google) all the little things in your cabin will start rattling at night- they were silent in the day. But now, as you try to drift off...they come out to play. I’ve just been initiated into one of the glorious mysteries of sleeping at sea though. Wedge your sea-survival suit under the outer side of the mattress and it creates a valley between the wall and the elevated side of the mattress. You can snuggle down into that space and barely move as the ship decides to do the nautical equivalent of a triple pike somersault on the beam with dismount. Smug faced.
- The toilets. For those that dislike reference to bodily functions; I suggest that you look away. The toilets are suction based which means that there are a series of rather stern instructions on the inside of the toilet door demanding that you flush with the lid down (I really want to know what happens if you don’t- does the ship turn inside out?) and certainly don’t flush whilst sitting on the toilet. Because, and I quote “serious injury may result.”
|More of Signy 2016|
|Signy 2016- I am phenomenally lucky!|
|The look of vague anxiety due to wondering how long it will take to peel off all these layers....|