Sunday, January 10, 2010

What A Day

Where to begin? How about breakfast. We all woke to the smell of Martian pancakes made in part by yours truly. Nothing like a little bisquick, all-purpose flour, de-hydrated milk, and powdered egg whites to make some tasty pancakes. The crew gave the pancakes a good review while Laksen was busy conjuring up a new polymer that resulted from our failed attempt at making edible egg whites. The only person that I felt worse for than Laksen was Bianca. She actually ATE the eggs. Sorry Bianca.

After the hearty breakfast the crew hit the Martian soil like it was a dance floor. Bianca and Diego took off on the rovers to go mark out sites for our research studies to be conducted. Soon after the two Marstronauts went out, they were out of site, a little later we lost satellite communication. Now we have a problem! Did "The Others" get them? Are they lost on alien soil? Ohh man this is bad, should we cook lunch or wait for them? Decisions, decisions. Much to our excitement we regained the com channel and heard those beautiful voices. Thank God, lets go get some lunch.

I will spare you from the ordeal that was suppose to routine maintenance on the main generator. Spare you? Wait I had to go through it and so will you. Laksen and myself were merely suppose to check the oil on the generator. We took the generator offline, so we would now be operating on reserve battery power. I get a call from Diego stating "the hab is out of power". This is no biggie at this point because it only takes five minutes to check the oil and then we can get the main generator back online and worry about this problem later. Upon our fourth time attempting to turn on the main generator, we came to the conclusion that it was not going to happen under the current circumstances.

How does this happen? The generator has been on a two year journey to Mars according to the" Zen Master" DG, we will talk about him later. It took years of planning and millions of dollars to ship this generator into the stars and onto the surface of Mars. Just when we thought the situation couldn’t have gotten worse, we realized the generator install team, who finished their work yesterday, just left the launch pad. There the only ones that can fix it and then they're on their way to earth. There is no one here capable of fixing this generator.

Guess who shows up? Yeah, the man, the one, the only, our everything, DG! Out of thin air, he appears to us and goes to work on the generator without saying a word. We all stand there in amazement. How did he know? Did you call him? Did YOU call him? Within ten Martian minutes the generator was working and the hab had power. After all this , you know what DG says, "Juss thought I'd stop by, I was juss passin on through."

The only scary part of the situation was DG's parting words, "I'll see yall in the mornin!" What? Why would he see us in the morning? Uhh ohh, this cannot be good. I was getting very worried, just then David stopped me and said "Paul, first you need to trust in the Zen Master. Secondly, go eat your rice and chili upstairs. No questions."

After eating rice and chili I accompanied David and Laksen out to the "recycle facilities". Recycle facilities consists of re-utilizing the waste water from the showers, which are not working, and dishes, in order to flush the toilets. This sounds nice and all, until the head engineer says that we have to go pump the waste water into the treatment plant. So we went ahead like the little indians we are and we pumped the water so that we could actually flush a toilet. Mike Rowe from dirty jobs, this is to you. You think you have seen some stuff, try being an engineer in an alien environment and pumping "Gray Water" into the green hab. Mike Rowe doesn’t have anything on Crew 88.

The night has ended with the mature use of the Mars Rovers by Laksen, David, and myself. These rovers have been updated with high-performance suspensions, exhaust, and engines. Boy do they fly! Laksen and David were hooked on these rovers. They are addicting. Once David was on the rover I asked him if he had the com radio with him in case he went out of sight. Dave responded "Out of sight? What do you think I am, crazy?" I reminded Dave that he was on a high performance rover in the middle of the Martian Desert, at which point he revved the engine, popped a wheelie for twenty some odd feet and took off into the sunset.

Commander Steve and I then went to collect some geological samples. We toured some sites, looked over a few billion year old cliff, and dug out some fossils. No dinosaur bones today, but hopefully we found some micro-fossils. We won't know until we do some investigation into the samples. Commander Steve gave me an entire lesson on the geological history of the Mars terrain and landscape. I began to wonder if this was his first trip to Mars, turns out he's studied and read a lot, but more importantly he watches a lot of the discovery channel. I knew there was someone else who loved the discovery channel as much as I. It was getting dark now. As we're heading in I saw some light in the distance heading straight for us at an awful frightening speed. Is it the polar bear? Is it the black smoke? As it drew closer, my heart began to pump faster, and my senses intensified. Is this what they have been training us for?

Turns out it was David returning on the rover. He fishtailed and hit the brakes right on the footstep of the hab. I looked at Dave with a slight smile, imploring him to share his rover ride with me. He summed up his rover ride, and the day perfectly in four words. "Damn, that was fun!"

I'll see yall in the mornin,


  1. Sounds like you're having a lot of fun! Wish I was over there doing all those cool things. I love you Paul. Keep us updated!

  2. BTW, those pictures came out really sharp. You must have a great camera! :)

  3. I do have a great camera thanks to you, but those pictures are not from it. Haha