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Daily Updates: May 2003
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Daily Updates: June 2003
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cloudy some rain
Cloudy, some rain
74°F (23.3°C)
Latitude: 33° 49'N
Longitude: 61° 59'W
Wind Direction: SSW
Wind Speed: 25 Knots
Sea State: 4-5
Sea Temperature: 71°F (21.7°C)
Swell(s) Height: 10 Foot
Barometric Pressure: 1013.0 MB
Visibility: 6 Nautical Miles

what's to eat

Pancakes with real maple syrup
Scrambled eggs
Oatmeal Bagels with cream cheese

Potato/leek soup
Kosher hot dogs
Baked beans
Grilled fish cakes
Spaghetti primavera with spinach pesto
Twix(r) bars
Salad bar

Polynesian meatballs
Classic chicken a la king, with cranberry sauce
Greek orzo and steamed rice
Mixed vegetables
Brussels sprouts
French fries
Homemade Italian bread
Homemade Boston cream pie
Salad bar

Answered prayers (we think)
June 2, 2003
By Joe Appel

The whole big-weather-no-dive thing was getting a bit old. A week into the cruise, we'd had to put off three of four Alvin dives due to seas that were too raucous to launch in.

We had a bouncy night's sleep last night, with winds steadily above 40 knots and swells around 12 feet. We woke up this morning with weather conditions just about the same. Something needed to change.

As we pulled into the area around Muir Seamount at approximately 9:30 a.m., signs weren't good. No one even had to ask if the captain and expedition leader had cancelled today's dive. That was a given.

Some scientists had resorted to muttering good-natured prayers to Medusa, the asp-haired anti-hero of the cruise. Some pored over video footage of the Alvin dive from days ago. Others did their laundry. A mid-morning ship-emergency drill was a welcome diversion. Quiet desperation was in the air.

And then, flashes of good news. Some sunshine poked through the clouds. The signs prohibiting us from walking on the deck were taken down.

Steadily, throughout the day, the weather improved. So much so that by mid-afternoon, technicians were launching transponders, which were to aid Alvin when - not if - it dives tomorrow. As night fell, we sent good ol' ABE into the sea, programming it to return early the next morning with some new maps the Alvin crew could bring along. All signs said: Turning point.

You can't quantify a mood, but you can feel the difference between a good one and a bad one. When a report from the bridge comes down at 8:30 p.m. saying winds were down to eight knots, and the chief scientist pumps his fist, you know.

When you can walk down the hallway without getting slammed into a wall by the rocking of the boat, you know. When a majority of the crew call it an early night, skipping the chance to watch a late-night DVD in the lounge because they want to be up early and catch all the action, you know.

Soon, we'll be back in the saddle. Look out, ocean floor.


















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