Erica Sampaga’s Blog

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My watch started mid-ROPOS dive, so figuring out what was going on took some time and orientation.  It was pretty cool to see ROPOS in action and to observe how a professional ROV team functions.  Later that day we also got a tour of the ROPOS work stations and the ROV itself, which helped to provide some background context to what it takes to have a ROV of ROPOS’s caliber working.  I also got to hibernate for approximately 20 hours, starting from later that evening until lunchtime.  Gotta love avoiding seasickness on a transiting ship!

August 2

Anemones are slimy and just weird to touch in my opinion.  Removal of such creatures was done with nice big metal scraper while trying not to completely decapitate the anemones still alive or knick the instrument that they were living on. Sure they had the best digs on the seafloor but apparently they didn’t get understand that the catch for such great living space was a one-year lease.  The eviction notice was quite abrupt and most likely unpleasant.  Polychaetes galore were also massacred during the cleaning process but the sea stars were to be re-homed to the ocean.  First ROPOS dive observed was very anticlimactic during my watch, as all that was observed and recorded was ROPOS in water and lemons added.

August 1

Thankfully the night owl has been assigned the midnight to four am watch shift.  Unfortunately said night owl did not time her Dramamine consumption in a manner conducive to having said watch time so naps and coffee galore will have to make up for this slight oversight.  All the coffee and napping proved useless though when everyone is on a weather hold.  We’ll try again tomorrow.

July 31

Note to self, never take a nap right before departure.  You will be unexpectedly awoken from the rolling movements of the ship and given some reality to the dream of falling despite laying still.  Also Dramamine is your new best friend.  Your old friend coffee helps you deal with your new best friend and you wouldn’t trade either of them for anything, except maybe carbs.