Musings from the Graveyard Shift

What’s it like to be on the night shift of ICY-LAB when the weather’s bad? Here we ask the night-shifters for their impressions of the cruise so far, and what have they learnt?

Michelle says she has learnt that you just can’t hold a sea pig in one hand – it’s true!

Shannon has learnt Casing Software. She says it may seem boring, but it lets you see how all the ship’s acoustics systems are running.

Hong Chin is convinced that you just can’t get enough seawater for sampling – FACT.

Everyone agrees that cheese can be a component of every meal – and that you can eat too much cake.

Laura has learnt that the smell of cheese and onion crisps is not helpful when you’re feeling seasick.

Adam’s favourite activities are recording ROV data on cassettes and pickling biological samples for genetic analyses in ethanol – and he learnt how to appropriately stuff a Euplectella (the ‘marriage sponge’ that two shrimps are locked within for life) to retain its delicate shape.

We all appreciate Hong Chin’s thank-you bow; it’s respectful and delightful.

Steph has learnt that up to a certain point the rolling of the ship is soporific – but too much is too much.

We all learnt that the ‘happy baby’ yoga position cannot be held with a straight face on a rolling ship.

Shannon is aware that she creates science hazards by doing multibeam surveys – George succumbed to the only real bout of seasickness.

Weirdly we have been learning Southern manners, courtesy of Shannon.

James only brought one pair of shoes, so he wears overshoes most of the time – we like that.

We have learnt the direct tea and biscuit ratio to encourage important ROV collections from the engineers.

Adam has learnt the correct pronunciation of Desmophyllum.

We learnt how many kilograms of samples we can collect before the ROV can’t leave the seafloor.

Laura learnt that James is hilarious.

George has learnt to think on his feet – you can’t always stick to the protocol when the conditions aren’t right.

Michelle has learnt that you have to be very clear when explaining genetics to geologists.

You can’t pack too many bungees.



The (tired, but cheerful!) Night Shift


ICY LAB blog 4 pic 1

The Night Shift Team! Photo credit: Shannon Hoy

ICY LAB blog 4 pic 2

Night Shift Team Leader, Laura Robinson. Photo credit: Shannon Hoy

ICY LAB blog 4 pic 3

An atmospheric sunrise over Western Greenland, while CTD surveys were underway. Photo credit: Shannon Hoy


2 thoughts on “Musings from the Graveyard Shift

  1. Carolyn

    Hi to you all you cruisers,
    Great photos Shannon!
    Am enjoying reading your posts, sounds like you are all having a purple-tastic time
    Greetings from a humid and thundery Bristol


  2. Tina van de Flierdt

    Go team ICY-LAB. Great to read what you have been up to. All my love to my great friends and colleagues on the ship. Tina


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