Seven everyday things that are strange when returning from Antarctica:
Nighttime: I forgot there are times when there is no sun. Whenever I leave the house, regardless of the time, I look around for my sunglasses. Then, I remember that you do not need sunglasses during the night, unless you are Corey Hart.
The closest to darkness we had while in the field. (Sarah Sams)
2. Not wearing gloves outside: So far, Indiana temperatures have not required gloves, but I wear them anyway. My hands feel too exposed without them now.
3. Traffic: The closest thing to a traffic jam in Antarctica was a sudden stop on a snowmobile to take a picture. Fighting my way through Chicago was stress-inducing to say the least.
Jenny and I stop for probably the twentieth time that day to take a photo. (Robin Blomdin)
4. A closet full of clothes: I am now aware you can live for 2 months with a limited number of clothing items (~60% being made of wool). Having a closet of clothes just seems excessive.
5. Grocery stores: When living in the arcs, our food selection was contained to one gray box, a variety of freeze-dried meals, and the nightly frozen food delivery by Fredrik. The number of options at a grocery store is just baffling.
Andreas checking if a frozen dinner is cooked through. (Carl Lundberg)
6. Alone time: When out in the field, you are almost constantly with someone else, whether in the arcs, walking along ridges, or driving to a site. Now, not talking to someone for more than an hour is quite strange.
7. Not being around the field team constantly: Everyone on the field team was incredible. Going our separate ways at Troll was hard after growing so close to everyone. It is weird to not have someone constantly around to laugh about inside jokes, discuss erratic and bedrock samples, or do the warm up dance. The lessons I learned, the laughter I had, and the stories I have taken away from this expedition are all thanks to the other wonderful members of this team.
The 2017-2018 MAGIC-DML field team on the last day at SANAE (not pictured: Jon Harbor). (Will Jelbert)