Intense field work, commence! My day was off to a rocky start, with my stomach waking me up at 6 am due to unknown pains. Not cool, innards. By the time I managed to crawl back to bed and semi-fall asleep it was time to get up again. Now yesterday Max announced an 8 am breakfast, which is fine by me. What time is it when he calls into the room saying breakfast is about to go away? 8:04. Not cool bruh. I think I’ve earned the reputation of late potato at this camp, but I swear to god I was up like 2 hours before everyone else and trying to pack my bag all ready to go. To hear that my breakfast access is in danger? This is madness!
Once everyone (aka me, because I was last in the kitchen) got breakfast we were out and away to a stream. Today was another test of quadrat abilities, as well as belt transects. This meant taking 1×9 meter strips of land up on the river bank and sorting out plant cover by %age in the canopy, sub-canopy and ground cover levels. It got easier as we went, but it was still a pain in the arse. Super fun though, definitely the most fun project I think we’ve undertaken yet! It’s mostly because I’m not a super geo person and this is more my line of science, but it was also just fun to splash around in the river. Which ended up going over waist-high (yay wet panties, not). The rocks were slippery too, helping with the whole getting wet process. It was prime.
The best part was when we were sent directly into a patch of ‘cutty grass’, a plant that will slice the shit outta you unless you move upwards with the plant – imagine running your arm up with it until it falls off. Yeah, a bit super hard to do when the stuff is up to a foot taller than you. Sharyn sent us into a patch that was dead, but a solid wall of it. Which mean that I lead our way through, body-slamming through the stuff and trying to fall through it. The one time I don’t want to be held and this grass is all over me. Dear god, the back of my neck is so sliced right now from this stuff. It was fun to bulldoze through though, and everyone was appreciative of my efforts since it meant that they didn’t have to fight it.
We finished the day with trusty old Ohope Beach, where I was not stripping down but settling for a nice walk with Sandy and Chloe. We saw some pretty birds, passed some cool surfers and enjoyed the sun slowly setting on the water. I was super hyped from our trek out into the stream earlier, so I took 3-4 wild sprints across the water. They felt great as both an energy release and a refreshing water splashing event, but it also meant I covered myself in a bunch of sand. Smooth as sandpaper, like always.
*HM01 is the move ‘cut’ in the pokemon world and referencing the cutty grass, for those of you who are lost on the title of this post 😉
**note for this post and all following: my wifi is currently spastic as heck, and it’s the first time I’ve had anything reliable for more than an hour at a time. so these posts will come slowly and without pictures as of now. i will make a separate note when I get a chance to upload consistently and with photos. thanks for sticking with me everyone!