The experience of being in Antarctica cannot be adequately conveyed in photographs and words. The continent is a truly awesome part of our planet, with an environment so different and extreme that my visit was as close to being on another planet as I’ll ever experience. From the deck of our big comfortable boat, we saw this sailing ship, with some more adventurous tourists aboard. The monochromatic scenery was breathtakingly beautiful! And everywhere there was wild life to gawk at.
We woke up a napping elephant seal pup.
We had to bundle up, but the temperatures were mild for the end of the world–in the 30′s F.
Being the height of summer, the sun was out most of the day and night.
The elephant seals sang (or grunted), “There were 9 in the bed and the little one said, roll over, roll over.”
Throughout the frozen landscape, there were signs of growth, like these lichens and moss.
And an occasional seal on an ice flow noticed our presence. Antarctica was worth the trip! My husband, Rob Goldsborough took many of the photographs I’ve shown from this trip. See more of his great pictures of Antarctica on Flickr.
See Polly and the penguins on my Facebook page.
We stopped in Santiago, Chile before flying south to Ushuaia, on the very southern tip of Argentina, to catch the boat to Antarctica. Here are some pictures of poet Pablo Neruda’s house, a fish market and a winery. Polly met some locals her size. She was hot in her wool coat, but kept in on for the sake of fashion. I’ll be posting a picture a day on Facebook as long as we have internet service.
Congratulations to quilt designer Erin Russek, who not only answered correctly that Polly is going on a cruise to Antarctica, but was the first person to write in an answer! She will be getting a personally autographed copy of Mary Had a Little Lamb. There were some great guesses for places all over, including several countries along the Andes. I hope that Polly’s new outfit keeps her warm in Antarctica–she insisted on wearing her skirt, though! We will be going through South America and stopping in warm Santiago, Chile for a night on the way to the tip of Argentina, where we will board a ship. We’ll try to send pictures from down under, depending on internet excess. If not, see you in a few weeks!
Polly Doll is going on a trip next month and her regular outfit will not do! She loved Oregon (see here) and San Francisco (see here), but missed the flight to Ireland. For this next excursion, she is determined to go along. She will need to bring some warm clothes to wear. Can you guess where she’s going?
She’ll be leaving her straw hat at home and will wear her new red coat and hat, warm mittens and Ugg style boots (size 3/4″).
This is a clue: Polly will be heading south from her home on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The first person to answer correctly (on this blog) before she leaves in a week, gets a prize. International contestants are welcome!
The prize is…
an autographed paperback copy of my book, Mary Had a Little Lamb. Good Luck! Oh, and I will be tagging along, too. That means my Etsy shop will be on vacation from Dec. 6 to 20, so order early for Christmas!
On our last day in the bay area of California, we visited beautiful Muir Beach. We met our friends from home, Judy and Phil Richardson, who are renting a house in Berkeley for a month. Judy and I created 2 picture books together (read about our book, The Way Home here). This was an opportunity to see Green Gulch, Phil’s boyhood home. For years he has talked about growing up on a cattle ranch that was later protected from development, when the property was given to the San Francisco Zen Center and a nature conservation organization.
Polly came along, while we hiked through the Zen Center and up to the top of the hill, which overlooks Muir Beach. What a spectacular view!
Leading up to our special day, we had gone out to Green’s restaurant in SF earlier in the week, which is run by the Zen Center. Here, Polly is inspecting my dinner, a delicious grilled polenta that was served with butternut squash and sweet potato gratin.
We’re back home and the snow peas in the garden have grown an inch. It’s going to be the earliest harvest yet! One of the highlights of our trip west was a visit with some RISD classmates in San Francisco. Rob and I had such a great time catching up with Ashley Wolff, Julie Downing and her husband Scott Slotterback. I swear, we didn’t plan our coordinated blue tops and jeans. Earlier in the day, I gave a talk at the Academy of Art University, where Julie teaches illustration classes. In the evening we gathered at Julie and Scott’s art-filled house.
Julie and I figured out that it’s been 29 years since we’ve seen each other. Ashley came to visit me last summer, which I wrote about here. Even Polly Doll made new friends. We took her picture with the little boy from Julie’s book, White Snow, Blue Feather and Miss Bindergarten from Ashley’s book’s.
Julie presented me with my old RISD meal card mug shot. I have no memory of the card, but apparently we were too unreliable to carry cards on our persons and had our pictures displayed on a board in the cafeteria. She had kept it all these years in a folder with other RISD memorabilia.
I look like a mixture of Pocahontas and Laura Ingalls Wilder. Thanks for such a good time, Julie! All these years, we’ve all been caught in the family and career vortex, so it’s great to finally reunite and still have fun together!
We walked along the waterfront, where Polly gazed at the Golden Gate Bridge in the distance.
These amazing purple blue flowers were growing around the marina.
After climbing Telegraph Hill, we went inside Coit Tower and were drawn into the WPA Depression-era murals, which depict California’s economic and political life.