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314-JournalistsReport

“I'm coming back in... and it's the saddest moment of my life.” – Ed White. 

The weather was clear and sunny, really different from our snowy first day of simulation. Tonight we will have our last meal in the Hab and tomorrow we will leave early in the morning. This has been a great experience for all of us, we are really sad to go back to Earth. This is the closest we have ever got to going to Mars! I’ve dealt with challenges we never imagine we would face. We lived with restricted resources. We had have minimum communication with our families, we have lived in a tough environment, We have learned what it’s like to be confined to a small building with six other people, unable to go out and breathe fresh air. I have learned that I can live without a lot of things I normally have. I have also learned that there are some things I simply can’t live without, like chocolate. I have learned that, despite of different skills and personalities, you can have a dream team of you all work together. Maybe things didn’t start the way we expected and maybe we were far from being perfect, but believe me that we really worked hard and we tried to take the best from these whole experience. I will definitely miss this. 

I imagined my final day in the Hab taking pictures and resting, but I was wrong. I woke up early to work in the Green Hab and we are still working on it. No free time, no relaxing time. We are dirty and even smelly, but it’s great as we are having fun. This was a great day, this was a great crew. I am so happy to have been part of this marvelous team, but it is also very sad to think that we will have to say goodbye to our lives here. I am sure this experience will lead us to our way to reach the stars. 

I want to thank all the members of the MDRS Mission Support, as they were always willing to help during our rotation. Ken, Paul, Steve, Gary, Judd, Susan, Darrel, Anushree, Andrew and Bruce, you have done a great job. I would also like to thank Shannon and Jean, who have worked really hard since we came here. Thanks to Alejandro Diaz from The Mars Society Peru, who trusted on our work from the beginning. Thanks to Robert Zubrin to give us this chance to make our contribution for future Martian explorations.  

This is crew journalist Olenka Jibaja, signing off for the last time. It was a pleasure.