After several days of preparation, Malika and I were ready to greet the first volunteers.
Here’s my diary entry for our first day (written for Biosphere Expeditions)
It’s been an exciting day here in Horta with everyone arriving in time for lunch at Peter’s. It’s been the warmest day so far (20 degrees) and the sun was shining strong. Elmar even sported a nice little sunburn at dinner!
The team met this afternoon to talk about expedition procedures, safety, and base camp ins-and-outs. Our biologist Lisa Steiner gave a brief overview of our research here and how important our work is here in the Azores. We are all quite excited to head out onto the water tomorrow.
In the morning we’ll have a briefing on how to use the equipment, the data we need to collect, and how we record the data. After lunch we’ll head to the Physeter, our research vessel, and go out to sea. Many people in our group are not sure if they get seasick or not…luckily we’ll only be on the water for a half a day, and the pharmacy is only a few meters away!
We decided to cook dinner ourselves here at Base Camp in a group effort. Four year old Tiago, the son of the Banana Manor owners, entertained us all with visits to meet the goats, and showed us our first whale sighting (on land, on his pedal bike). Dinner was delicious thanks to Malika, and I can only hope that we have a chef on the next slot because I am not sure if we will eat so good if I am the one cooking.
After dinner we turned off all the lights and watched the stars from the quiet garden. Shortly afterwards everyone found their pillows, and now most team members are dreaming of the creatures of the deep.
Excerpts of this diary with pictures and videos at
Text copy of this diary at www.biosphere-expeditions.org/diary