Today I was happily back in the water. Billy Snook, Tom, and I shot two short videos explaining basic "underwater" science concepts. The first video was about how colors change as you descend in the water column (reds become dark, blues look basically the same -- I'll miss the color red while living underwater!). For the second video, we took a balloon from Aquarius to the surface, showing how the differences in pressure will inflate the balloon.
REVISITING THE BIRCHES SCHOOL
On the boat this afternoon, I was delighted to reconnect via Skype with the Birches Elementary students (kindergarden through 3rd grade) about Mission 31. I met the Lincoln, MA, students last fall and explained what it's like to be an aquanaut (blog post about that). They asked so many excellent questions! Today they asked me when I'll start living underwater (June 17th!) and what training was like. I was impressed they'd seen all of Mission 31's YouTube videos and, of course, had more excellent questions, such as:
The also asked if I had been bitten or stung by a jellyfish, and the answer is yes! (stung, that is; you can't really get bitten by a jelly). One of the Navy divers on our boat shared an exciting story of a jellyfish attack that certainly peaked their interest.
MEET THE OTHER AQUANAUTS
The production team, including Marc and Toby, edited these video diaries from the aquanauts currently down below. In addition to the three profiled below, Fabien and two technicians, Otter and Ryan, make up the present Aquarius crew.
Tomorrow is a big day for me. I'll graduate from MIT! Since I didn't graduate from high school, this will be my first graduation. Even though I won't make the commencement ceremony in person, I'll be following the live feed, flip the "brass rat" with the rest of my classmates, and have a mini-celebration here in the Keys.