Jeff Filippini is a postdoctoral scholar at the California Institute of Technology.
In the SPIDER team this year we have a lot to be thankful for. The major parts of our payload are assembled. Our cryostat is cold and performing reasonably well. All six of our half-wave plates (polarization modulators) are installed and turn smoothly at low temperature. All six of our focal planes are at operating temperature (sub-Kelvin!) and the bolometers are functioning. We have the privilege of living and working in Antarctica, one of the most stunning places on Earth. Most importantly, we are here with a fantastic team, having a great time with one another in and out of the lab.
Thursday (Thanksgiving local time) was a normal work day on the ice, but our LDB (long duration ballooning) facility galley staff prepared a special treat: a full turkey dinner for lunch! The food was exceptional, particularly the turkey (moist and delicious!) and the orange-cranberry sauce. We all appreciated the taste of home.