Thursday, October 4, 2012

Motivation: Endurance Post #2

     I am happy to say that this book is finally picking up. I found this second section much more interesting and therefore easier to read. It seems that despite the crew having to abandon the ship and live on the ice that their motivation level has yet to decrease. The crew were well aware of the hardships that would come along with having to travel 346 miles across the ice but this did not discourage them.  "Nevertheless, there was a remarkable absence of discouragement." (pg. 63) This is truly amazing to me. These men were forced out on to the ice with little supplies and even at the beginning this is how they felt. "It was quite enough to be alive and they were merely doing what they had to do to stay that way." (pg. 64) They knew their purpose and they stuck to it.
   As the chapters progress, the men end up setting up Ocean Camp and they are thrown into a routine which comforts pretty much all of them. Shackleton becomes worried that the men are too comfortable but he is glad to see that his crew is generally in good spirits. After the crew set up Ocean Camp, they make multiple trips back to the Endurance to retrieve multiple things such as the third boat, more food, and personal belongings. At the end of chapter 4, the Endurance is finally overtaken by the ice and sinks. Even after the crew's final tie to civilization is gone, they are not upset by it. "But the reaction was largely a sentimental one, as after the passing of an old friend who had been on the verge of death for a long time." (pg. 84) The men really seem to enjoy their time on the ice. They signed up for this voyage because they all sought adventure. Macklin comfirms this when he writes in his diary: "Really this sort of life has its attractions." (pg. 85) The men have all managed to look at the good rather than the bad in their situation. With a decent load from the Endurance, they have plenty of food, shelter, and even games.
     It is not until the end of chapter 5 that Shackleton begins to worry about his crew succumbing to demoralization. At this point, time has begun to weigh heavy on the crew and Shackleton is well aware of this. Section two ends with a few diary entries about the New Year. Most of these entries seem somewhat disheartened but also hopeful for the following year. The crew is obviously not happy about how far they have gotten in the amount of time that they have been on the ice but this does not keep them from hoping and striving towards a better new year.

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