On Observation Hill

Francis Spufford

Here I stand on Observation Hill. If the Devil made me an offer at this moment, I feel sure I would accept. The kingdom of ice and snow is spread at my feet. From Observation Hill, on 25 February 1998, I look down on McMurdo Sound, a wide fjord plated over with white; and on the shore, McMurdo Base, the largest scientific station in the Antarctic. Its labs, its dorms, its industrial landscape of gasoline storage tanks and warehousing, all fill a hollow in the tip of Hut Point Peninsular on Ross Island.


The Problem Outside
The Man with Two Heads