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1. ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
12th November 1912
The Body of Captain Scott (of The Antarctic) is found
Captain Robert Falcon Scott had followed the conventional career of a naval officer in peacetime Victorian Britain. In 1899, he had a chance encounter with Sir Clements Markham, the president of the Royal Geographical Society, and learned for the first time of a planned Antarctic expedition. A few days later, on 11 June, Scott appeared at the Markham residence and volunteered to lead the expedition. Having taken this step, his name became inseparably associated with the Antarctic, the field of work to which he remained committed during the final twelve years of his life.
On the first expedition, (1901-1904) he set a new record by marching to latitude 82°S and discovered the Polar Plateau, on which the South Pole is located. During the second venture (1910-1913), Scott led a party of five which reached the South Pole on 17 January 1912, only to find that they had been preceded by Roald Amundsen's Norwegian expedition. On their return journey, Scott's party discovered plant fossils, proving Antarctica was once forested and joined to other continents. At a distance of 150 miles from their base camp and 11 miles from the next depot, unable to progress due to an extreme long-running blizzard, Scott and his companions died on the 29th March 1912 from a combination of starvation and hypothermia. The frozen bodies remained preserved by the cold temperatures for the next 7.5 months.
The bodies of Scott and his companions were discovered by a search party led by the surgeon Dr. Edward L. Atkinson 12 November 1912 and their diaries retrieved. Without the facilities to transport the bodies, the rescue party made the final camp the lost group's tomb; a high cairn of snow was erected over it, topped by a roughly fashioned cross. In January 1913, before Terra Nova left for home, a large wooden cross was made by the ship's carpenters, inscribed with the names of the lost party and Tennyson's line from his poem Ulysses: "To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield", and was erected as a permanent memorial on Observation Hill, overlooking Hut Point.
The world was informed of the tragedy when Terra Nova reached Oamaru, New Zealand, on 10 February 1913. Within days, Scott became a national icon. A fierce nationalistic spirit was aroused; the London Evening News called for the story to be read to schoolchildren throughout the land, to coincide with the memorial service at St Paul's Cathedral on 14 February. The survivors of the expedition were suitably honoured on their return, with polar medals and promotions for the naval personnel.
The reason Amundsen's expedition had triumphed over Scott's was that Amundsen relied exclusively on dogs for both transport and food in the field - Scott had refused to allow his animals, a combination of dogs and unacclimatized ponies, to be eaten, and for the final leg, the final group had set out on foot, pulling their own supply sled. This not only made their progress much slower, it sealed their fate when exceptionally bad weather closed in on the return journey.
2. TODAY IN MY LIFE
Business promotional work
Twitter Followers = 2,034 (no change)
Non-followed eliminated = 0
Unfollowers eliminated = 0
New Followers followed back = 0
Spammers not followed back = 0
3. TODAY'S SELF-OBSERVATION
My new sleep pattern continues, having two hours in the middle of the day and being ready for bed by 10. In a new twist, I awoke at 02:15 incredibly thirsty and apparently wide awake. One cup of tea and an hour's blogging later, I was ready for bed again, and duly slept to varying depths until 06:45
I'm not concerned about any of this, but rather fascinated seeing what this bodymind does in the complete absence of a pressing schedule. With Missus returning to work on Monday and schedules returning, it will be interesting to see how my bodymind behaves. Even when times are quiet, my life experience is still presenting me with fascinating experiences! This is a very happy time in my life, not because challenges are absent but because this character is living his life his way.
4. TODAY'S QUESTION FOR YOU
How well do you understand yourself?
5. TODAY'S WEATHER IN BRADFORD
Most of the day will be dry and cloudy with a moderate southerly wind
The tail of Atlantic Storm Abigail arrives after dusk with wind and gales
Winds will ease by mid-evening but there will be heavy showers until morning
Max Temp = 13 degC at 5pm
Min Temp = 8 degC at midnight
Sunrise at 07:27
Sunset at 16:14
Moon: New Moon
Weathertrack: A passing ridge of high pressure will be followed by a rapidly moving cold front driven by Atlantic Storm Abigail
Air Pressure: 1018 millibars and falling
6. TODAY'S ONELINER
I have an internal spell-checker that changes "I have so much anxiety I can barely breathe" to "I'm fine." :D
7. NOW THAT'S FUNNY!
Jim Carey does Vanilla Ice
For much of the 18th century, tea in Britain was a very expensive heavily taxed luxury and predominantly imported through illegal methods. Smugglers would often mix tea (most often green tea) with other types of leaves and additives to increase their profits. Often these additives were poisonous. The British government intervened in 1785 and lowered taxes, which made tea more affordable and wiped out illegal smuggling activity.
9. ZEN WISDOM
Ultimately, our battle is with ourselves. Whether in our activities in society, or whether in historical, political or economic developments, everything essentially boils down to a struggle between the positive and negative forces within us.