Yesterday morning we called MacOps to add items for our resupply request, and instead they told us that a plane we already en route and would arrive in an hour. The communication on Antarctica has been more than lacking in my time here. We scrambled to gather all the retro and transport it to the landing site to send off with the plane. Then we had to make a second resupply request that should have gone with the original request. This led to the organization of our camp move and us being told we would need to be ready for a camp move four days earlier than originally planned. No worries, we have been crushing the field work. We have 140 samples and hit the lamprophyre jack pot yesterday. It would be nice to have more open communication for our own camp move logistics though.
In addition to the field work, I have been using this trip to try to absorb as much knowledge from John as possible. I am still relatively new to hard rock research. I have been working with John in the hard rock realm for less than a year. Many of the field relationships and rocks of interest are new concepts for me. Sure, I took tectonics, mineralogy, and petrology in undergrad. But that was about seven years ago so my current understanding is shallow. I am excited for my research on these Miller Range rocks, but I have a lot of catching up to do. Being in the field has been huge for rocketing my knowledge baseline into motion. John leads us around, tracking down rocks of interest like a weimaraner on the hunt. Then I take a bunch of field notes and spend the evening looking up all the words I didn’t understand and processes involved to gain understanding on why we are doing what we are doing.
This is an important time for me. I am trying to decide what my focus will be. Do I want to become a geochronologist? Or a petrotectonicist? Or maybe a tectopetrologist? Do I want to focus on the petrology of igneous systems or metamorphic systems? These are important questions. I am paving the groundwork for my future. I want to be a professor, so I better make sure I like what I am getting myself into. John has posed an important question at me, “What do [I] want to spend the rest of [my] life teaching?” It’s a hard question. The rest of my life is a long time relative to my life, my only reference point in anything I partake. It’s a sobering topic to dwell on.