Something that's both welcome and a little disorienting when returning home from the ice, is the arrival of dusk; for seven weeks, we lived in the constant presence of sunshine. There was no such thing as noticeable sunrise or sunset, no darkness and therefore no obvious onset of night. More often than not, the sky was occupied simultaneously by the moon and the sun -masculine and feminine energies poised for a time in open conversation.
Complex cloudscapes accompanied our C17 en-route home from Antarctica to Christchurch;the flight itself was a helpful transition space. I was certainly grateful for the time it took us to cover the distance between one continent and the other; awkwardly cocooned in our side-on seats, we were strangely 'in stasis' even whilst traveling at noisy high speed.
As the frozen landscape receded, ice seemed to vaporize into colour and cloud - water and white in dynamic new form.
The following pics show views from one of two small windows I was able to press my nose - and my camera - up against on the journey home. We left Antarctica in a snow storm and landed in Christchurch five and a half hours later, in the pitch dark. Stepping off the plane and onto tarmac, the air felt tangibly thick and warm; it smelled deliciously of grass, moisture, humans, animals, soil and green.
The end, we like to say, is also the beginning -
It was no surprise to find we'd returned on a new moon.