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Commander Report
Paul Knightly

Happy Thanksgiving from the Mars Desert Research Station! Today was another productive day for the crew here on Mars. Nearly all of our scientific research has been concluded and the crew has been sorting through their data and processing samples ahead of our return to Earth. We are planning to exit Sim tomorrow morning so that we can prepare the Hab for the arrival of the next crew. Morale in the crew is high even if we are a bit sad that our adventure here is drawing to a close.

We had a short EVA to perform engineering systems checks on the outside of the Habitat and to retrieve a materials repair experiment set by Ian the day before. Some photographs were taken outside to send back to Earth in honor of both Thanksgiving Day and the conclusion of our mission. Once back in the Hab, the crew tended to their data reporting.

As the American on the crew, I took it upon myself to prepare a ‘traditional’ Thanksgiving dinner with the provisions we have on board. I had the help of Paul S and Ian in preparing the feast. The meal tonight consisted of Spam turkey and canned chicken with a pepperoni garnish, mashed potatoes, gravy and noodles, green beans, cranberry sauce, and stuffing. It was the first American Thanksgiving for several on board (and the second Thanksgiving celebration of the season for our Canadian crew-members.) The meal went well and we are reporting full bellies and warm spirits as we are reporting to you this evening.

It’s hard for all of us to imagine that our two weeks on Mars is drawing to a close, but are thankful for the experience that we’ve had and are all excited about the research we’ve conducted. Time now for us to prepare for our return to Earth.