Gib Finney’s sequel to THE POWER OF UN
From Me, Ash, about the Airplane
2 May 2008, Ash @ 4:57 pm

Hi. I am trying out doing a post. Writing is not my best thing. I have trouble thinking of what to say. Writing stuff down is sort of a pain. I would rather DO stuff than write it. That is a big difference between me and Gib. But I want to show you this video and pictures, which Steve, the MBARI guy who is kind of the captain of the radio-control airplane engineering team, sent me yesterday.

This airplane is awesome. It has a video camera, and special bomb-dropping capabilities that will allow it to drop a GPS locator tag on an iceberg. And it has a huge engine so it can fly in the wind.

Above is a picture of the team (Alana, Kim, Steve, & Paul) putting the plane together in the test area.

Above, the plane is almost ready to take off, with its engine running. Yes, that is a Nerf football strapped to the bomb-dropper. Its purpose is to be padding for the GPS beacon. Awesome!

Mom Has a Cow
2 May 2008, Finney @ 4:36 pm

Guess what? Chicken butt. :) Ash and Rainy and I got interviewed by reporters about our trip, who wanted to know all kinds of stuff, like how we got invited onto the icebreaker. If I had the story of Donald the Frog finished, I could have just told them to read it. Which is a good reason to finish writing it, I guess. And I will, but there’s all this other stuff that seems more important during any one-second interlude.

Oh, before I forget, I have been doing a lot of work on the “Who’s on the Iceberg” page. To check it out, look to your right, and choose “Who’s on the Iceberg” under “Pages.” This tells you all the people who are on the voyage with us, and is sort of like the appendixes in the back of Lord of the Rings, except it’s scientists and engineers instead of hobbits and elves.

Things are really starting to move fast now. It’s only 24 days until we get on the plane headed for the very most southern possible tip of Chile and the little town called Punta Arenas where we will get onto the ship. Mom is starting to have a total cow. First, she was worried that we will get lost in the Dallas airport while trying to find our flight to Santiago, Chile. Finally, I convinced her we will be all right because Dr. Smith is meeting us at the gate in Dallas, and besides, if we had to we could find our flight by READING THE SIGNS, like everybody else.

Then Mom stopped worrying so much about that part, and started worrying about the size of the ship. Here is a picture of the Nathaniel B. Palmer. It does not look small to me. But when Mom saw this picture, for some reason, it majorly freaked her out.

I said, “Mom, chill. The NBP is 308 feet long. 308 feet! That’s as long as a football field. It’s REALLY BIG!”

“No, it’s not,” she said. “The ocean is thousands of miles long. And there are all those icebergs out there. The Titanic…” And she started to cry. Which gave me sort of a weird feeling somewhere between my stomach and my intestines, because, you know, parents are supposed to be the brave ones, right?

I said, “Mom, the Titanic was not an icebreaker. The NBP has four gigantic Caterpillar diesel engines. That’s, like, the same amount of power as 12K big, black horses. If ice gets in our way, the NBP wins.”

Then she said, “What if your feet get cold?”

I said, “Mom!! Remember all those fat pairs of socks you bought me?”

But she just kept crying. I cannot win. This made me very worried that she might say, at the last minute, that I can’t go. Which would be catastrophic, as will be revealed at the end of Donald the Frog’s story, if I can ever finish it. Stay tuned.