“It’s been three months since I’ve had an orange”

I have a strange fascination with lives lived in extreme environmental situations — astronauts, submarines, and Antarctica.

In my defense, one of the greatest horror films of all time, inspired by one of the greatest horror stories of all time, is set in that cold, icy place.

Anyhow, this piece on what it’s like to be the head chef in Antartica’s Concordia Station is great:

“While [Chef] Ficara didn’t really expect to end up in the Concordia Kitchen, he turned out to be the perfect fit for the job given his diverse culinary repertoire. The chefs chosen by the PNRA must demonstrate not only proficiency as cooks, but also a robust knowledge of international culinary practices so that they can cater to the tastes of the 13-person Concordia winter crew, who hail from England, Switzerland, France, and Italy.

The winter-over crew at Concordia is living in near total isolation, their contact with the outside world limited to digital interactions during the eight months of the year when Antarctica is so cold that jet fuel turns to gel, prohibiting any visitors from reaching the base. In these isolated conditions, food takes on a special importance for everyone at the base. While the crew may be landlocked until November, Ficara nonetheless manages to allow his colleagues to return to their homes on a nightly basis, riding on aromas of Yorkshire pudding, foie gras, or chicken parmigiana.

In addition to trying to cater to the local tastes of the various crew members, Ficara also arranges for themed nights each Saturday, occasions for which he prepares some of his most lavish meals.”

This is palpable:

““Maybe you’d be surprised, but when we receive fresh vegetables, the most amazing way to eat them is in the natural way, to just take a tomato and bite into it,’ said Ficara, eliciting groans from his colleagues as they envision just how nice it will be to see fresh fruits and vegetables again in November.”

This makes being body-snatched by an Elder Thing just about worth it.

This entry was posted in Books, Food, Mighty Cthulu, Places, Travel. Bookmark the permalink.

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