FNG advice on what to bring


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  • #448
    anderson
    Member

    Hello everyone,

    I have been reading this board for a few months now and thank you for making this one of my most valuable resources for information about working on the ice.

    I finally received my paperwork for the IT systems administrator position at McMurdo this winter season. Now that I know i am coming down I wanted to know what things I should bring that are not listed in the deployment packet? What are the things you wished you had brought on your first season? What are the things that make life easier for the winter season? and what do FNGs usually bring that they really don’t need.

    Also if anyone on here is working in IT at McMurdo drop me an email.

    Thanks in advanced for your advice,
    Eric

    #3363

    If you are interested in doing any outdoor photography be sure to bring a sturdy, but not too expensive tripod and extra batteries for you camera.  Also, some things to give your room a feeling of home – I didn’t bring anything and my room was a plain (boring) dorm room, which got old after a while.
     
    Keith

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    [font=Arial, Helvetica, Sans Serif:yu2r3y8l]FNG advice on what to bring[/font:yu2r3y8l]

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    Hello everyone,

    I have been reading this board for a few months now and thank you for making this one of my most valuable resources for information about working on the ice.

    I finally received my paperwork for the IT systems administrator position at McMurdo this winter season. Now that I know i am coming down I wanted to know what things I should bring that are not listed in the deployment packet? What are the things you wished you had brought on your first season? What are the things that make life easier for the winter season? and what do FNGs usually bring that they really don’t need.

    Also if anyone on here is working in IT at McMurdo drop me an email.

    Thanks in advanced for your advice,
    Eric

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    Travel Journal: http://www.travelblog.org/Bloggers/explorer_keith/

    #3364
    MightyAtlas
    Moderator

    Howdy, Eric —
     
    Congratulations!  I was wondering who the winterover SysAdmin was going to be.
     
    I’m Atlas – I’ll be wintering with you.  Not in the same office, but in the same department.  There’ll only be eight of us in IT this winter.  Down by about a third.
     
    As far as what to bring – well, what would make you comfortable? 
     
    Room-wise, I like to have my own sheets, pillow, mattress pad, and comforter.  I also like to use Christmas lights for illumination. 
     
    As far as toys – iPod, laptop, game console, camera, external hard drive, etc. 
     
    Clothing – You’ll get all the cold-weather gear you’ll need, issued in Christchurch, but I like to have some of my own stuff, too.  Buy a good pair of sturdy boots, and bring a pair of tennis shoes (as well as workout clothing).  You might want to think about a jacket/pants/tie/dress shoe thing for the big, mid-winter dinner, too.
     
    Think about bringing down an assortment of vitamins, too, and any kind of supplements you may need/want.
     
    And most importantly, bring a good attitude, and work-ethic.  Ain’t nothing worse than a bitchin’ slacker.
     
    Read through previous posts, regardless of the subject.  There’s alot of great info in these pages.  Many FNGs have come here for guidance, and support.
     
    And since you already used the term ‘FNG’, I’ll assume you know what it means.  🙂
     
    Take care, Eric.  I’ll pass on more as I think of it.
     
    Oh, BTW, as a winterover, you’ll get a baggage allowance of about 140 lbs., and receive airline vouchers for excess baggage.  If you don’t want to carrry all of it with you, mail the stuff to yourself ahead of time.  It’ll be safely stored in our Mailroom.
     
    Later.
     
    a

    #3365
    Davinator13
    Member

    Does this mean they are actually still filling positions for the Winter?

    #3366
    MightyAtlas
    Moderator

    They’ll be hiring for winter right up into February.  There are always positions to fill at the last minute, or people that don’t PQ, or change their mind.
     
    If you want a job – apply.  Just gotta be able to handle six months of isolation and darkness.  Think of it as a short marriage…

    #3367
    thepooles98
    Keymaster

    Don’t forget to pack some nice dress up clothes for the mid winter dinner. It is a very definately dressy event. Tuxes and suits. Or black pants nice shirt etc. Lots of slinky black dresses on the girls. While you don’t have to dress up, you’ll feel out of place in your carhardts. On the camera end batteries are the single biggest complaint of new people. Your batteries will die in a few minutes at 40 below. Buy lots of batteries and keep them warm by storing the extras in an inside pocket. I once had a battery pack that put out 6 volts. I could keep it in my pocket and run a wire to the power jack on the camera. If you video, the up and coming thing is to have a film festival each year. All the computers have windows movie maker. It’s fun to participate.
     
    Bring down your hobby stuff , this might be the year it’s more important as there won’t be rec team for the winter. Most years I bring things and never use them, but they are nice to have. Start mailing everything now and it may be here when you arrive.
     
    Bring sarongs or fancy pieces of cloth to hang on your walls. It makes it feel less like a dorm room. Bring a laptop an as many hard drives as you can handle. Bring music ,all the digital music you can. IT, which I assume will include you prohibits the downloading of media files. It would not look good to be firing someone else while you are doing the same thing.
     
    On that note a recent past time has been for people to bring down theme videos. Complete seasons of shows. They invite their friends to a nice wine and video night in their rooms or lounges. Projection  TVdevices that let you show videos on a wall through your laptop are especially nice.
    mike
     
     
     

    #3368
    Davinator13
    Member

    Thanks, Atlas. I love the night so I assume the darkness won’t bother me as much as a summer.

    Marraige, on the other hand, _that’s_ intimidating! 🙂

    #3369
    anderson
    Member

    Thanks for all the advice. Ive already started packing and I will start sending stuff down in the next few days.

    Thanks again,
    Eric

    #3370
    thepooles98
    Keymaster

    Nice Eric
    We’ll be seeing you before long. I should be here for the duration of the vessel. At least til the end of the first or second week of February.
     
    As we said before. Read all the old posts about what to bring and then start peppering us with the questions.
    Mike

    #3371
    MightyAtlas
    Moderator

    Yo, Eric —
     
    Just confirmed there’ll be two of you in your workcenter this winter.  And wouldn’t you know it, both of you are named ‘Eric’.
     

     
    Also heard you’re probably coming down in January.  That’ll be good – there’s alot to learn in a short time.  Hope you like doing a ‘variety’ of things.   
    We have our first Winterover meeting here today.  Those of us that are already here have some questions about the upcoming season because it’s a little different than previous years.  Of course, if you have nothing to compare it to, no worries.
     
    Anyway, write me if you need any advice from the IT-side of things.  See ya next month.
     
    a

    #3372
    anderson
    Member

    Hey guys,

    I got my tickets today. I am leaving on the 6th of January and from what ive been told I should be on the ice by the 12th. Now with tickets in hand I thought of a few more questions.

    How much clothing should I bring? I’m thinking around 14 changes of clothing and some extra shirts/sweaters etc. Being unable to run to the store for 10 months i have no idea how long stuff will last. Maybe thats way too much…let me know.

    How are the rooms outfitted? Are there dressers, closets, desks, and carpeting or concrete?

    Ill probably think of more as im packing.

    Thanks again,
    Eric

    #3373

    Eric, do not overload, its the one thing everyone does on their first trip down. Clothes will be available in Skua, bring maybe a few changes for teh first week but most jobs are such that you can wear the same things for a few days before anyone take offense to the smells, and thats coming from a plumber. Take some casual clothes for special occasions but mostly its comfortable work wear for the most part. T-shirts and jeans work well for almost everything but I would suggest getting some silk thermals also before heading down as they really make a huge difference on the really cold days and they weigh nearly nothing. Almost everyone brings too many clothes and fills Skua up more or ships them home when they see that they will never use them all so just think about 6 changes at most as laundy machines will be easy to get when things settle down and its less weight on your shoulders on the way down.
     
    Rooms have two wardrobes and a small dresser in each. I think the winter over rooms have two dressers but there were rumours of doubling up for this winter to save heat costs. Carpeting in all rooms but some are colder and some hotter depending on what floor and how close to the corners they are. Make sure to bring at least 1 hoody with you as tey are most useful there for walking around when its not cold enough for big red but too cold for a t-shirt.
     
    Lucky.

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