SOL 92 [14 January 2017]
Crew 172 is precious for me and will always be. Personally, after living 80 sols with an amazing team, coming back to the hab with a different team was a little challenging. They said they had been following our Mars160 mission but we all were strangers for each other. But I think we all went through the process well because we all had a single goal – a successful mission. We are the Mars Society Crew. I would say that I see an immense potential in every member of the crew. Illaria, a very responsible lady, can be seen mothering her crew members while performing her sleep enhancement study (she escapes from cooking haha) Pierrick and Gwendal, two young professionals, amaze me. They are testing the Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) to detect the trace of underground water. As well as, they are using 3D cartography system and simulating how an astronaut can get the altimetry data of a particular region on Mars - a completely new area of study for me. Patrick, an oceanographer by training, taking care of Martian plants, calm and polite, and last but not least, is a huge lover of Indian food! Troy immersed himself in making sure that all the systems inside the habitat work properly. I think he is an example of how a Crew Engineer should work during a Mars mission. Nick showed us an amazing world of virtual reality (VR). I remember when the first time he showed me 'Why Humanity Must Explore the Unknown' in his VR device, I was teary eyed.
(Nick made an interesting comment in his journalist report once that having spent 80 sols at the station already, this 2-week rotation with them is like walking in a park for me. I laughed and said nothing is like walking in a park for me! And he didn't believe :)
My crewmates are signing off, but I hope that this journey is just the beginning of their journey to Mars!
I'll talk you all again from the Arctic :)