Day 1 in Samos

Oh my goodness, I did not believe that jet lag was real until I arrived in Samos about an hour ago. I am so tired! Although I definitely banked on being able to sleep on my second flight from Toronto to Athens, but I was totally wrong. I don’t know what I did before on my overnight flight from Qatar to Entebbe, but it didn’t work this time. Also I think something that I ate on the plane just didn’t sit right with me. I feel so bloated and full, yet all I have ate is some pesto pasta and a corn salad type dish. Oh and a freddo cappucino at the airport; it looked a lot better than it tasted. The foam on top, which I’m assuming was milk, was not great.

Okay, enough of me complaining, so first day here in Samos and on Archipelagos’ research base and it’s interesting. I definitely expected archipelagos to be more high tech and lab/scientific like. Not that I have an issue with the base, I just expected more and honestly I was really intimidated by it. Now, not so much and it makes me feel better. So far the people here seem nice, although I haven’t met too many people.

For those that don’t know, over the next six weeks I will be working with a team, made up of students from around the world, to study micro-plastics. In the past few years micro-plastics have slowly become more apparent in the news and is becoming a controversial topic in some countries. Micro-plastics are very small pieces of plastic that pollute the environment, most commonly the marine environment. I’m not exactly sure what job I will have or what I will specifically be doing over the next few weeks, but in the past students and researchers have spent most of their time collecting pollution data from sand, water, fish and mammal samples. One marine animal that I was told about today was the sea turtle and the abundance of micro-plastics found in the stomachs of the deceased. It’s all so sad to think about how we are affecting the environment and the organisms around us everyday in the production, use and waste of plastic.

As I said I arrived about an hour or two ago now and so far the people here seem nice, although I haven’t met too many people. My roommate was one of the people that gave me a quick tour of the base and then there was another researcher named Jeffery. One of my roommates is from Tennessee and the other is from the Czech Republic, at least I’m pretty sure that’s what she said. I’m sure I’ll have more to say about them later after I get to know them better.

sheldinw

I am a rising junior studying environment and minoring in entrepreneurship and urban planning. For the next 6 weeks I will be interning at the Archipelagos Institute of Marine Conservation. During this internship I will be aiding in microplastics research on and around the Greek island of Samos.

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