Journalist Report – January 6th

Sol 8 – 01/06/2018

Name the space movie (or show) given the following quote. Answer at the end of the Report:

“Space,” it says, “is big. Really big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mindbogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space.”

Morning Song: Someone New by Hozier.

Morning Routine: Stretching.

Breakfast: Oatmeal with Brown Sugar and Blueberries.

EVA #7: Collect. More. Rocks.

But none of that matters today. The routine, the unbelievably scenic views, the amazing science being done during this mission. None of it… Because today, after eight days… Eight long, dry shampoo filled, wipey scrubbed, hair stiff as uncooked spaghetti noodles days. I. Finally. Took. A. Shower.

While on Mars, water is a limited resource just like anything else. It’s hard to find on Mars; therefore, it must be conserved. Our mission instructions allot us a 2 minute Navy shower every 2-3 days. The instructions for a 2 minute Navy shower: Step 1: Turn on the water. Step 2: Jump in the water. Step 3: Rinse and jump out. Step 4: Turn off the water. Perform Steps 1-4 in under 45 seconds. Step 5: Scrub your body with soap in 15 to 30 seconds. Step 6: Repeat Steps 1-4 to rinse the soap off. It is a stark change from my 45 minute showers back on Earth, and it is not particularly pleasant, but it gets the job done.

But why did I wait 8 days? Our habitat holds enough water for 1-2 people to take a shower per day. Added bonus, our water heater has a mean personality and rarely works, no matter how nicely we ask. Our Engineer caved first. She described her shower has having a brief moment of warmth. Our Commander and Executive Officer experienced the same sensations of freezing water, pleasant warmth, and scalding, burn your skin off, temperature, then back to freezing cold. Our poor Geologist only felt the ice chattering cold. There was one common reaction to taking a shower across the crew, we have been reborn. It is as if you are a new person, slipping into a fresh skin like a recently molted lizard. Nobody particularly smells on this crew (or maybe we have just gotten used to each other’s smells), but in an effort to conserve water, I endured the dry shampoo and baby wipe scrub downs until I couldn’t possibly take it anymore! And I swear my hair has never felt so soft as it does today. In fresh clean clothes. With my fresh clean body.

That’s it for today. That was the highlight. We are always thinking of our loved ones. We hope they don’t miss us too much, and we want them to know that we are having a fantastic time on the Red Planet. We can’t wait to share all of our adventures with them when we return… And take a 45 minute shower. With working warm water. And ice cream.

Movie (or Show) Answer: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

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