During that week I almost didn’t get out my flat. I set myself in a semi-hermit state and spend all two weekends and a full week writing on the computer. I was not obsessed but instead, I took my time and relaxed plenty in between. It was a vacation week after all.
All this process was done with some stealth. This was simply too out there to involve someone. It was not as if I could get penalized if someone from my company new what I was about to do. I honestly didn’t care for that.
If I involved someone in the process, I had to deal with unnecessary explanations, questions and unwanted advice. Besides, if all of this ended up in, well, nothing, at least I didn’t had to deal with someone else’s expectations and what not. This was my thing and my thing alone.
I submitted the application on the last Sunday and after that, all I could do was wait.
The final date for selection was three weeks away from that point. I was confident that I would get a reply, either good or bad. In these cases, a bad reply is better than no reply at all.
Needless to say that the following weeks were grueling ones.
The first week not so much because I assumed that BAS would need at least a week to go trough all applications carefully. But from that week forward, each day was filled with anxiety. There was too much at stake. Once you apply to go for more than a year to Antarctica, every menial tasks is put into a different perspective. Until that point I always felt that, no matter how boring and pointless a task was, at least I was getting some experience that I could use in the future. But now things were different. If I was selected, all I was doing at that point would become almost completely irrelevant. The technological part is always useful, but all the management and corporate stuff that I had to deal at that point would disappear.
I was about to change the caqui pants, the ironed white shirt and shinny shoes for dirty mountain trainers, short and funny t-shirts. If I got selected, the next all 16 hour shift that I had to pull was because some radar was covered in ice, a GPS station was not communicating or there was a problem with the base generator and not because a manager decided to promise to a client that a four week task would be finished in two, simply because the board of shareholders needs to see profit by the end of the year. Complete inversion on priorities.
After two and half weeks of wondering, I got an e-mail.
BAS was interested in my application and wanted me on Cambridge for morning of interviews.