Knowing that it's extremely unlikely that I'd get to it tomorrow (we're catching the ferry to the island around lunch time and arriving at my parents place late afternoon), we're going to see what's going on with The Colony today.
Spent time in both the morning and afternoon at a local park with Max, as he was not ready to leave the house when Kat had to go. It was a lot of fun: a warm, sunny day, lots of kids around, and plenty of equipment that was a good size for Max to play on.
So of course he spent most of the afternoon kicking a ball (that we borrowed from a group of kids) around the field.
Heading for Comox tomorrow. Except not the house I grew up in, as my parents moved to another place since we last visited. When Max was 4 months old.
It's going to be... different.
I have to give Robbie credit, despite all that happened today. He's actually a pretty good driver.
The terrain here is treacherous, to say the least. With all those boulders and jagged rocks it could easily have been a jolting, crashing ride out to the Alpha and Beta drops, full of flat tires and punctured gas tanks. But it was quite smooth, relatively speaking, and Robbie managed to avoid banging up the buggy too noticeably.
That doesn't make up for what we discovered on our first foray onto the Red Planet... but I guess it's something.
We reached the Alpha drop site with no issues. No vehicular problems, no unexpected terrain in our way, no Martians. Though I'm pretty sure Robbie was at least a little disappointed about that last one.
Anyway, I could tell almost immediately that there was something wrong with the container. The only visible damage was a long, jagged crack in the exterior, but it was enough. I guess the sensors back on Earth weren't strong enough to pick up on it, but that bad boy was completely empty, its contents likely floating out among the stars after making touchdown with too much force.
"At least there are five more," I remember Robbie saying with a shrug.
What if they're all like this?, I remember thinking.
We got back in the buggy and he brought us safely to the Beta drop site, maneuvering around craters and boulders with a surprising gracefulness. The damage on that container was more subtle. In fact, I didn't even notice it - that honour goes to Patrick, the third member of our search crew.
"The lock's been busted," he said, standing in front of the door with his head tilted to the side.
He must have meant it happened in flight, or that the landing was again at fault. I mean, it's not like someone or something had purposely done it after it had arrived, right? But I didn't get a chance to ask. Or even inspect it myself.
Because that was when Robbie noticed the dust storm headed our way.