On deck of R/V Roger Revelle, against the backdrop of a tabular iceberg, Angie Milne, who suffers in Florida’s heat, enjoys Nature’s finest air conditioning. Photo by Charlene Grall
“Hi, I’m Angie Milne, visiting FSU as a post-doctoral associate with Professor Bill Landing.” Angie’s an ocean-connected gal. Growing up in seaside Blackpool, England, Angie says, “I ‘packed in’ a job in the service field of insurance and pensions for the allure of exotic travel. This kindled my environmental interests, leading to my enrollment at the University of Plymouth, also a seaside English city, to do Ph.D. work in air, sea, and environmental chemistries.”
“While completing my dissertation at Plymouth, I met Professor Bill Landing, who was on sabbatical there in 2006. He notified me of an opportunity to do post-doctoral work in my field here at FSU.” With us for more than a year, now, Angie’s duties include analyses of samples collected by Dr. Landing and his group on his frequent research cruises.
Angie participated in the IPY CLIVARI6S cruise as an experienced member of the trace-metals team. Veteran of many cruises, she’s been invaluable as a mentor to the students, some of whom are experiencing their first scientific ocean cruise. A notoriously challenging environment, the Southern Ocean for a student’s first cruise can be daunting (Blog # 5)
When asked what she might like to tell readers unfamiliar with life aboard an oceangoing research vessel, Angie shared a few of her thoughts:
- After getting your “sea legs” by spending several weeks on a rolling, pitching vessel, you’re left with the sensation of movement beneath you once you once you’ve returned to land; it takes time to re-adjust.
- Shipboard showers have handholds to grasp while bathing so you can stay on your feet in rough weather, and water per shower is limited.
- Meals are taken at tables equipped to keep dishes, silverware, glasses, platters, etc. from sliding off and crashing to the floor.
- Special scientific gear to be deployed at sea, or machinery to help you manage the gear you’ll deploy, has to be shipped ahead for you to load onto your vessel by departure time. If it doesn’t arrive on time, you might have an option of delaying departure and losing extremely costly ship time. Alternatively, you need a contingency plan in place to manage without that gear, or you have to be very creative and concoct one in a hurry.
In addition to enjoying travel, Angie’s active in her local squash club back home, but she tells us, “Florida’s torrid temperatures have been difficult for me, making the game less attractive here.” With cooler weather on Angie’s wish list, we know she got some welcome relief from steamy Florida on this Southern Ocean cruise. She’s obviously a great gal to have as a maiden cruise mentor, and we certainly enjoyed her company.
Outreach Coordinator’s note: On the southwest coast of England, Angie’s alma mater Plymouth’s neighboring county Cornwall is known for palm trees and lemon trees growing in tropically lush coastal areas. Yes, you really did read that right!
That seems impossible, as southern Great Britain lies at the same latitude as Newfoundland off Canada’s east coast. But this example is testimony to an ocean’s capacity to absorb vast stores of tropical heat, to transport it poleward, and to transfer significant warmth to the overlying atmosphere along the way.
The Gulf Stream moves almost unimaginable volumes of tropically-warmed water northward: about 1000 times the Amazon River’s flow, which itself disgorges 1/5 of the entire world’s river water. Prevailing winds from the west are warmed as they pass over the Gulf Stream in their Atlantic transit. Northern Europe, the beneficiary of Gulf Stream warmth, enjoys a much milder climate than its North American counterparts. (Warm, sunny Spain lies at the same latitude as New York City; the Gulf Stream and prevailing westerly winds are the genesis of their climate disparity.)