Ebony, 14, went on a VIP tour of the JOIDES Resolution research ship as a Crinkling News junior reporter when the vessel made a port call in Fremantle, Western Australia.

On November 27 I boarded the good ship JOIDES Resolution for a VIP tour, and an information session hosted by members of the ship’s recent voyage.

Some readers might remember this ship as the research vessel that went on a nine-week voyage to explore the sunken continent of Zealandia, but let me tell you that was not the only thing it was doing!

The drill ship JOIDES Resolution. Photo: supplied

The drill ship JOIDES Resolution. Photo: supplied

Crew tell their story

The tour started in the ship’s library, where crew members took turns explaining a little about what they’d been researching, and what positions they’d had on the voyage.

Unfortunately for me, half the audience were geoscientists, and the speakers did not trouble to translate what they were saying into plain English for the rest of us. However, I could understand a few and they were very interesting.

Friendly and polite

The atmosphere of the tour was one of professionalism and friendliness. Everyone was welcoming and polite. One geoscientist gave me his business card, and even unofficially invited me to the Australian Geoscience Council Convention in Adelaide in 2018.

Another great thing was getting to see some of the personal additions to the ship the voyagers had made. On the walls around a spiral staircase there were the winning designs of logo competitions which advertised the trip’s objective. A Jurassic Park-themed logo particularly caught my attention.

A home away from home

Sometimes it was small touches, like a person choosing a cat with laser eyes as their profile for a computer in the room where they tested core samples for natural gamma radiation. Or silly stickers plastered on hard hats. Sometimes it was large additions, like big cardboard cut-outs of cartoon characters artistically placed atop scales in a laboratory.

Seeing how the scientists had worked to make the ship their home and their workplace a fun environment really made the tour special.

The JOIDES Resolution is truly a magnificent ship, and the people who work on it and the work they do is just as – if not more – impressive.

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