Almost ready to go!

*Some* of our gear.

The bags are packed and we leave tomorrow!  Twelve pieces of checked luggage await transport in our lounge: 8 Rubbermaid 24 gal. ‘action packers’ and 2 suitcases each. Hydrophones and associated equipment take up almost all the space. We are also taking at least 10 various cameras and their accessories, scuba gear, first aid equipment, books and notebooks, and clothes and towels. Lithium-ion batteries can only be carried on, so Simon’s bag contains $3200 worth and weighs…an amount I am not willing to state here. Through some miracle, most checked bags weigh between 48 and 52 lbs. Simon may have spent an excessive amount of time trying to extract the greatest value from the $50-a-bag checking fees imposed by Alaskan Airlines.

The last week has been a hectic one in the acoustics department – Tuesday saw us testing the Buckingham Lab’s Fly-by hydrophone array off the Scripps Pier, demonstrating deployment and retrieval to the Scripps diving safety officer, Christian McDonald. Analysis of the collected data revealed all was not well inside the flyby; the National Instruments PXI 8186 PC inside, running windows XP, was creating a strong square-wave signal on top of the ambient ocean noise we were supposed to collect… Although the problem was eventually resolved by re-installing ALL the computer hardware and desperate jiggling of cables, the root cause is still a mystery. Stay tuned to see if the Fly-by can work its magic in the northwest Hawaiian Islands! Thanks to Fernando Simonet for advice on this matter and our intern, John Bruce, for sympathy.

The Fly-by computer housing literally ‘just’ fits. If one box is going to be overweight you may as well put all the heavy stuff in there, right?

Meanwhile, Lauren was busy taking care of the permitting and dive safety side of things. A DAN Oxygen kit was sourced from the diving locker and will accompany us on all diving excursions. Permit applications to gain access to Pearl Harbour, access to NOAA’s Kewalo research facility, scientific access to the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, and permits for deployment of scientific equipment in some of the marine protected areas around the main Hawaiian Islands with the Division of Aquatic Resources are underway. Fingers crossed that we’ll be given the green light on all of these…

Now Lauren is working hard to clean the apartment and store our personal items to prepare for our subletters, and we are both finalizing details around San Diego.

A huge shout out and thank you to all of our friends and family that are chipping in to help us relocate for 4 months- checking mail, babysitting our fish, watering the plants, and generally keeping an eye on our subletters!

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6 thoughts on “Almost ready to go!”

  1. We are safely in the San Diego airport by the gate. We learned that our luggage just fits into a Dodge Caravan (thanks Art!), and Alaska Air was awesome about helping us get everything to the counter and checked through to Honolulu. Simon even scored a free burrito at Baja Fresh since they messed up our original order 🙂 So far things are looking good!

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  2. Congratulations, what a good start! Safe travels. We look forward to updates and photos:). Thank you for creating this blog for us to follow your adventure. Hugs to you both!

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