Saturday, September 17, 2011

Why Would Anybody Go Here For A 'Date Night'?!!

       Sooooo....why would two old people who really don't like the cold take a crazy left turn and head to Antartica...Yes! I said Antartica!...for a 'Date Night'?!! Ha! Ha! And the answer is.....because we can!!!!! ^_^
        And because we were inspired by a commercial on television. ^_^ We were sitting there and we saw one of the commercials on T.V. for 'Klondike bars'. {You know....the ones that at the end sing the tune saying: ♫ What would you do-oo-oo for a Klondike bar?! ♫}...

      Hubby thought there were much more interesting things that a man could do for a Klondike bar! ^_^  And one of the commercials we saw a while back showed a man ice fishing in Antartica....So, there you go!! Ha! Ha! Cut to....hubby and I in ANTARTICA!!!! Ha! Ha! Oh No!!! It wasn't 'my' idea!!!...Not even for a Klondike bar would I go to Antartica.....normally! ^_^ And then again....
        ...where did I end up?!...In 'virtual' a my warm layered clothes...munching on the most delicious Klondike bar you ever tasted!!! ^_^ I had something else too. I'll tell you about that in a minute. But first...let me tell you some fun facts hubby and I found out about our destination for this trip...Antartica!
       Did you know that more than 99 percent of Antarctica is covered with ice, and that the thick ice cover makes it the highest of all continents?...Or that Antarctica is never really talked about as having spring or autumn/fall... Summer lasts from October/November to March/April... the rest of the year is considered to be winter?! 
          ...Or that it's the coldest continent on earth?!....The lowest temperature ever recorded anywhere on earth, -128.6 degrees Fahrenheit (-89.2 degrees Celcius) was on July 21st 1983 at the Russian base at the Southern Geomagnetic Pole. It's close to the Pole of Inaccessibility, the point on the Antarctic continent furthest from any other, and also the most difficult or inaccessible place to get to. It is consistently one of, if not 'the' coldest place on earth! (You can go HERE to see lots of pictures of the area)
             Did you know that it is also the windiest place on earth?! That the continent is buffeted by strong winds, with calm periods lasting merely hours rather than days? And that a wind speed of 200 mph was recorded at the French Dumont d'Urville base in July  1972?
      Did you know that in the winter it doubles in size due to the sea ice that forms around the coasts?...and that only about 0.4 percent of Antarctica is 'not' covered by ice? In fact, the Antarctic ice cap has 90% of all the ice on the planet and between 60 and 70 % of all of the world's fresh water.

          Did you know that Antarctica can be classified as a desert because a desert is defined as a region that has less than 10 inches of annual rainfall or precipitation...and that in the interior of the continent the average annual precipitation (in terms of water) is only about 2 inches...less than the Sahara?!...
        ...and that, unlike other deserts that have a lot of evaporation going on, there is 'little' evaporation from Antarctica? So that the relatively little snow that does fall, doesn't go away again! Instead it builds up over hundreds and thousands of years into enormously thick ice sheets?!....Fascinating isn't it?! was to us! ^_^
          Did you know that it doesn't rain in Antartica?.....Ah hah!! I knew I'd find something to like about this place!! ^_^ But wait....the reason has to do with it's being too cold. What would be rain falls as snow instead!...O_0...but not very much of that falls either. This has something to do too with it's being classed as a desert, as so little snow falls. 
        Did you know that the two poles, the North and the South poles, are complete opposites 'in that' the North Pole is an area of sea surrounded by land, whereas the South Pole (where Antartica is) is an area of land surrounded by sea? 
       Are you tired yet?!...^_^...Need some food before we go on?!....We did too!
           We hunkered down in the tent and got all nice and toasty again with a beef stew that had regular and sweet potatoes, onions, garlic, and all kinds of other good 'stick-to-your-bones' warmness! :-) Okay....back to fun facts!
        Did you know that Antartica  if Antarctica's ice sheets melted, the worlds oceans would rise by 200 - 210ft  - everywhere?!
       Did you know that there are no land based 'vertebrate' animals in Antarctica?...All the vertebrates there are migratory and leave the continent when the winter arrives...
       For instance...the oceans surrounding the continent are teeming with great quantities of life. Large numbers of whales feed on the rich marine life, especially krill. Six species of seals and 12 species of birds live and breed in the Antarctic.
         Crabeater seals are the second most numerous large mammal on the planet after humans and the population of krill has been estimated as outweighing the human population...The most famous inhabitant of Antarctica has to be the penguin. 
          The largest Antarctic 'invertebrates' are only a few millimeters in size...mites, ticks and nematode worms who tolerate the low temperatures in the winter by becoming frozen in ice under rocks and stones! They have antifreeze in their bodies and stop all motion and bodily functions while they're frozen!...{The largest 'land animal'...period... in Antarctica is an insect, a wingless midge, Belgica antarctica, less than  0.5in long (1.3cm)}...You know what?!....I 'might' be an invertebrate!!! ^_^
         And did you know that the Antarctic treaty forbids the import of soil or similar materials to Antarctica because of the possibility of introducing non-native insects, fungi or bacteria?!....I guess that rules out hubby's growing sunflowers there! LOL
       This treaty also has something to do with the fact that no one...and yet everyone...owns Antartica too!....Fascinating!
        Did you know that one of the biggest icebergs ever (possibly 'the' biggest iceberg ever) broke free from the Ross ice shelf in Antarctica in 2000?!....It was 183 miles long and 23 miles wide, with a surface area of 4,250 square miles above water - and 10 times bigger below.  It was similar in size to The Gambia, Qatar, The Bahamas, or Connecticut!!

         And speaking of inhabitants, does anyone live (permanently) in Antarctica? And are there towns there?......No!....No one lives in Antarctica permanently, or even for a long period of time! Most people do a "summer only", that's about November to April, with a lesser number staying over the Antarctic winter (when any chance of transport in or out is virtually impossible)....The only "settlements" are scientific bases that vary in size, but typically have 50 people there in the summer and 15-20 in the winter.
      Some people have had an "enforced" winter. This is when ice conditions mean the ship that should've come to get them couldn't get through and had to go home without them until next year! The result is a wait from April until October / November...or later...when the ship can get through again. This means three summers and three winters in a row!

        Did you know that Antarctica is the best place in the world to find meteorites. Dark meteorites show up against the white expanse of ice and snow and don't get covered by vegetation!
         Here's a question...Are children allowed to go to Antartica?!......Answer....Allowed to - yes, but don't often go! Everyone who goes with a country's Antarctic program has a job to do...and children don't have jobs, and so don't go!....There goes Antartica as a family vacation!! ^_^
        Another question....Does Antartica have electricity?....Answer..Yes it does. Usually provided by diesel powered generators at each base, but increasingly some bases are installing windmills to generate supplementary electricity...but this can pose a problem in case the strong winds damage the windmills.
       You can breathe out now. I'm almost done! ^_^...Did you know that UV (ultra-violet) radiation is fierce in the summer in Antartica, so wearing wrap around goggles and sun screen on any exposed skin is just as important as keeping warm in the winter?!
      And lastly....yes I said lastly!...there was a funny story on the site where I got the majority of my info about Antartica about a man who when he first arrived in Antarctica was surprised that whenever any one went out for a trip - a few hours, or all day - they only ever took chocolate bars to eat! He, being unimpressed with how unhealthy this was, when he went on his first trip made some wholesome and nutritious sandwiches (tuna and mayonnaise on wholemeal bread.
        Come lunch time, his companion got out his chocolate bar and proceeded to eat it, while he  got out his sandwiches.  After 5 minutes of sucking a frozen corner, he gave up and resorted to chocolate...and didn't bother with his healthy option again! ^_^...Ha! Ha! Another reason to like Antartica! It's full of chocolate lovers like me!! ^_^
         No matter where we go for 'Date Night'......and I mean no matter where!...I can always find something I like about it! :-) And, of course, one of the main reasons is because of the giggling....'take-his-dishes-to-the-sink-and-wash-them'...kind of guy I always go with!! ^_^
      I hope that sitting in a tent with two old people like us, and listening to me rattle off info about the our 'virtual' destination didn't bore you too much! ;-) If it did....I apologize. But you know me....the chances of it happening again are probably likely!! ^_^
      Have a good weekend everybody!! Keep warm, well fed, and watch your association!! :-)

...And Ice Cream

Butter Pecan ice cream
and Strawberry Jam;
Country Fried Chicken
and clove-studded Ham.

Banana-Split ice cream
and French-Fried Potatoes;
Macaroni and Cheese
and Fried, green Tomatoes.

Ben and Jerry's ice cream
and Shepherd's Pie;
Candied Yams and Marshmallows
and Turkey on Rye.

Chocolate Swirl ice cream
and Jelly Beans of all kinds,
Double Cheese Burgers
and Barbequed Pork Rinds.

Cheesecake ice cream
and Foot-Long Hot Dogs,
Lay's Potato Chips,
and Warmed up Pecan Logs.

Orange Dream Sickles
(and Fudge Sickles too),
Mushroom Chicken Breasts,
and Chocolate Charleston Chews.

Chocolate Chip ice cream
and Oven-Baked Pork Roast,
a Cinnamon-Raisin Bagel,
or simply a piece of Toast.

Ice Cream is always on the menu.
It always adds that extra "Zing".
No matter whatever else you're having,
it smoothly goes with everything!


  1. Deb, very fascinating. I really enjoyed reading all the information about Antarica. Thank you so much for sharing the information and the poem. It's to cold of a place for me and I really don't enjoy the wind either...LOL..I won't ever want to go visit there. Thankfully you did it for me.Have a great day!!!!!!

  2. SnowflakeDreams1, Ha! Ha! I'm with you on the 'cold' thing! Brrrr!...I don't think they'll be a return trip to Antartica. Certainly not in the winter!!! ^_^ I'm glad you enjoyed this trip though!...Have a good weekend Velma! :-)

  3. My husband would LOVE your post...and that's a dream of his, to get to Antarctica!
    That ice-cream bar is making me hungry!!!
    Have a great weekend.

  4. We Blog Artists, Awww! I hope he gets to read it then! :-)) My hubby loved it too!! We had a good time yesterday talking about some of the info...and eating, of course! ^_^ Although why anybody would dream of going there is a puzzlement to me!...O_0...Except for the constant eating of chocolate. THAT I can understand!! ^_^ Have a good weekend!

  5. I can't believe I was right!!! Do I win anything? lol!

    It has been so cold here today that I had to drag the heater out and crank it up, so we've had a bit of Antarctica ourselves (or myself, everyone else seems to be ok).

    Looks like you guys made the best of the cold climate with some hot food!

    Enjoy your Sunday - Go Bills!!!

  6. I don't think I envy your virtual trip to Antarctica. I'm cold thinking about it. What I do envy, is that wonderful Klondike bar!! Those are my favorites!!! Your stew looks great too! What am I saying....I just got done eating fish and french fries!! I did treat myself to a Weight Watchers Raspberry ice cream bar. YUMMY!!
    Hope you've had a great day.

    We're setting up for a garage sale next weekend. What a LOT of work that is!!

  7. Lisa, Ha! Ha! Yes you did guess right, but Sorry...I don't have a 'Booby Prize'!...( )...And it was waaaay chilier here today too! I guess the Fall weather has also decided to make a showing...just in time to mimic Antartica! ^_^ Grab a blanket, some hot apple cider, cozy up to that heater, and "Go Raiders!!!" ^_^ {Just fooling around. I really don't have a preference in this game...Dallas isn't playing! ^_^}

  8. CinLynn, Ha! Ha! I know what you mean about the cold! But it didn't deter people around here today. It seems like everybody and their mama was 'tag-sale'-ing!! The cold is not bothering them one bit! Looks like you picked the perfect time to do the garage sale! (I don't envy you the work involved in setting it up though!)...Okay, time for a leftover Klondike bar! ^_^ Have a good rest of the day Cindy!

  9. What an awesome date night! I knew a number of the Antarctica facts as I was a little obsessed with penguins when I was younger and my dad served in South Georgia, and the South Sandwich Islands for a while when I was really little. I've always been quite fascinated by the Antarctic and remember reading about the iceberg breaking free from the Ross shelf - scientists were quite worried about it due to what it means about climate change. Great post!

  10. Creating Trouble, Thank you so much!! It's nice to know that my 'Date Night' silliness is actually being enjoyed by somebody else besides us! :-] By the way, the penguins are my hubby's present obsession too! :-) But I must admit you're among the few people that I've ever heard say that they were 'fascinated by the Antarctic'! Brrrrrrr! ^_^

  11. Thanks for sharing all that interesting info about Antarctica. I knew some of that it. It can be very useful for trivia games :)

  12. Jo-anne, Ha! Ha! I hadn't thought of it for trivia games! You're right!! ^_^ Thanks for the reminder.


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