Single Digit Midget

This is one of the best pictures of me ever. And at the South Pole. I don't look that good in real life. Thanks, Josh, for taking it.

This is one of the best pictures of me ever. And at the South Pole. I don’t look that good in real life. Thanks, Josh, for taking it.

I have a habit which started in graduate school, some years ago: I don’t subtract dates. At the time, this was to prevent me from knowing the answer to “How many years have you been in graduate school?” I claim I got this from a friend, she claims she got it from me, so I have no idea how it started.

In some ways it’s made my life difficult: I don’t place events in time well. I forget when things happened, and can’t anchor my own history. In other ways — or perhaps exactly the same ways — it’s lightened the burden of having my own history in order. I know that I think about my past in a way that’s different from the way some other people think about theirs, and I think mine is a lighter burden, for me anyway.

Until two days ago — I think it was two days ago — I hadn’t known the answer to “How long until you leave South Pole?” I knew that my date out was February 6th. Only recently did I look to see that that would be a Wednesday. And really, only today — Wednesday — did I find it hard to *not* know how many days away that is. “One week” is a nice round number that I can’t ignore.

I’m not eager to leave, and I’m not eager to stay. Just as well in either case, since I am leaving and don’t have any control over that. The USAP’s plans are that I’ll be on a flight from South Pole on the 6th, stop briefly in McMurdo to change planes, and continue on to Christchurch. I might add that the USAP hasn’t been getting good grades in executing its plans lately, so I might not leave on the 6th, and the briefness of the stop in McMurdo is always in question.

I’ll have a few weeks in New Zealand to travel. I am looking forward to that, but it’s been a while since I had took a thinly-planned, long touring vacation. Last time was a couple of weeks in Australia, and by the end I was glad to go home. I don’t know who I am these days, in terms of winging it on vacation by myself, but I’ll soon find out.


4 responses to “Single Digit Midget

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