USAP Earthquake Support

In Feb. 2009 and Feb. 2010 I embarked from McMurdo Station, Antarctica to Christchurch, New Zealand where the USAP transporation portal is, for example, that's where our C-17s fly out of to McMurdo Station and that's where we get our Extreme Cold Weather clothing. When I heard about the February 22 earthquake I felt deep concern for my Ice friends and co-workers because that time of year many USAP folks are in transition to-and-from Antarctica via the Christchurch USAP portal. The summer season is comming to an end and the winter season is just beginning... those who are in migration in the Christchuch area I wish you best of luck in your travels. The following comes from the www.usap.gov website:


Posted February 24, 2011 3:26 PM MST

"Nearly 95 percent of U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) personnel believed to be in New Zealand during the time of the Christchurch earthquake have been accounted for as of 3:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on February 24. USAP officials in Christchurch and the United States continue to work to track down the remaining personnel.

USAP participants who have taken shelter at the USAP facilities near the Christchurch International Airport are in the process of being transferred to Auckland with the help of the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF). We anticipate all remaining personnel at the USAP facility will be evacuated from Christchurch by Friday night (local time).

A U.S. Air Force C-17 is scheduled to make two flights over the weekend to transport about 200 summer personnel away from McMurdo Station, weather permitting. A storm in Antarctica had delayed flights, and McMurdo personnel are busy clearing snow from the roads and airfield. Passengers from McMurdo will first be flown to Christchurch, and then transferred to a RNZAF flight to Auckland."

Here is a synopsis of the earthquake situation and it's impact on USAP operations:

"At approximately 1 p.m. New Zealand time on Tuesday, February 22, a 6.3-magnitude earthquake struck the city of Christchurch on New Zealand's South Island. Christchurch serves as the deployment hub for personnel of the U.S. Antarctic Program, which is managed by the National Science Foundation (NSF).

NSF expresses its deepest sympathy to the people of Christchurch who have been affected by this latest tragedy, especially coming as it does just months after the severe earthquake last fall.

Personnel travelling between New Zealand and Antarctica come through the Christchurch airport aboard U.S. military and New York Air National Guard aircraft. NSF also maintains offices and other facilities — including a warehouse and distribution center for field gear and passenger terminal for Antarctic flights — in the International Antarctic Centre adjacent to, but separate from, the airport.

NSF is deeply concerned about the welfare of those people affiliated with Antarctic Program who, as yet, have not been accounted for and remains hopeful that they will be discovered to be safe and sound.

Finally, NSF also recognizes that this is a rapidly changing situation and that information may continue to be updated over the next several days. More information will be posted at this site as the situation develops."

If you are part of the USAP program or a relative of a member and in need of assistance call: 720.568.2346



Three days before every full moon I have vivid dreams and prior to this recent moon (Feb. 18) I had a dream about solar flares creating earthquakes.

While at Trent University, Canada, in 2008 I studied (inside and outside my curriculum) the impacts of solar activity on our climate, satellites and power systems. The 2012-2013 solar maximum is approaching and once again I'm digging through cosmoclimatological oriented scholarly papers to piece together the relationship between the earth and sun. Science pertaining to the sun intriques me, perhaps the reason why it is forever imbedded in my subconscious and revealed in dreams. For many months, if not years, my train-of-thought has been narrowed to the kitchen and culinary processes for the sake of income and traveling the world, but there's... more or less... a raven tapping at my shoulder. Why is it that I am where I am and do what I do? What is unfolding here boys and girls?

^ I took this photo 3 months ago while standing in the center of Christchurch right after I left the South Pole. An earthquake struck in September of 2010 and when I left the Ice in early November I was curious to see what became of the buildings and the catherdral was still there. The post where I got this pic is called 'from icebergs to earthquakes'...


A few days after my dream we had a series of intense solar flares brush the earth and an earthquake yesterday in New Zealand that brought the Christchurch catherdral to near ruins. I'm not going to be like my Grandfather and say that one caused the other ;), but I am going to propose a hypothesis that I think needs to be further studied.

When I hear folks talk of the transformations of 2012 they often refer to the poles flipping. Now, I have spent quite some time at the polar regions, primarily in the South and have had the lucky chance to mingle with polar scientists studying the climate, sun and in general, the entire universe and the creation of it. I learn directly from the field scientists and don't need to refer to a classroom to get the knowledge I seek, in return they get some good food. But, let me get back to the poles flipping... what is a polar flip?

Radioactive isotopes derived from ice core samples from the polar regions indicate geomagnetic reversals are common throughout earth's history and we haven't had one for 780,000 years and based on the graphs it looks like we are due for one. In fact, the geomagnetic poles are on the move and this will have an impact on compasses and navigation in the future. A geomagnetic reversal is not a physical flip of the earth, but are they correlated in any way? Are geomagnetic reverals triggered by another cosmic phenomenon, i.e., change in solar output and polarity? The puzzle in front of me is that of an invisible (geomagnetic) world, and a physical world, i.e., plate movement.

Okay, so back to my dreams to tie up my story here... in my dream I saw the sun spitting flares at the earth, the earth's colourful radiation belts bouncing around, the core of the earth spiralling and altering it's movement in accordance to the overall change in the earth's energy field. Change of terrestrial aura due to input of UV+ electromagnetic streams coming from the sun. Furthermore, I saw the earth's tectonic plates like the scales of a lizard... originating from molten molecules within, moving outwards, migrating along the body, etc. But, different than a lizard's scales the plates on earth were colliding and more interestingly the plates were being formed from a chaotic core of magma that was reacting to magnetic state of the local solar system. Changes in geomagnetism led to fluxes in core rotation and process, thus changes in the location and velocity of orogeny and subduction... thus tectonic movement... and finally, earthquakes. Mountains rising from the sun's energy... now that's a thought.

Although a dream, it was a very deep one and something I am going to look further into because more often than not my dreams are filled with meaning and accuracy. Instead of looking at the themes and mythology of the characters in the dreams I will have to look at science, because there were no characters. I don't even feel like saying it was a dream, what if it was just an reawakening and I was able to feel/see/visualize the unseen world, the world the Haudenosaunee's believe belongs to the 'transformers'... the earthly spirits of mountain building... the phenomenon geomorphology call orogeny that was somehow connected to geomagnetic interactions between the earth and sun.

I believe that if there is electromagnetic instability on a global scale than there will be physical instability; and maybe social instability, but I steer away from that idea for now because human geography was never my thing... we're just dust in the wind. I think it was one of the Marinist Brothers at my high school who taught me that the first thing that occurs before civilizations collapse is civil unrest (riots, protests, wars, hunger, etc.). Mountains on the other hand... contain the stories of the sun and the earth's core because they are the longterm residents that live between both forces of creation. So now once again I must tie together geomorphology, climatology, cosmology, geology, etc. Put science together and what do you get? A breath of the universe.

Well, I am now in Bocas del Toro taking a one night vacation and buying some groceries for this upcomming weekend rush of guests. One of the girls sitting next to me in the WiFi room is from New Zealand and she is wearing a very sad face, time for me to go see what's up in the world while not at tranquil Gilligan's Island. Just remember that no matter what happens out there, inside, below and above everything is radiate. Welcome to purgatory... remember to just ride to wave of destiny and adapt to whatever the universe sets in front of you.

22/2/2011 Popa Paradise Dinner Menu

( ::: Popa Paradise Beach Resort ::: )
Monday Dinner Menu

Salads and Appetizers

::: Popa Garden Salad with Fresh Limon Vinaigrette Dressing :::

::: Asian Sesame and Ahi Salad with Ginger :::

::: Homemade Walnut Bread with Honey Butter :::

::: Fried Calamari with Chipotle Mayo Dip :::

::: Ceviche with Patacones :::

Plato Principal

::: Popa Island Sushi Roll (8 Pieces) :::
(Bonito (Atlantic Tuna), Cucumber, Red Bell Pepper, Cream Cheese)
with Wasabi, Ginger, Teriyaki and Vegetable Stir Fry

::: Lasagna with Bleu Cheese Béchamel :::
with Roasted Bell Peppers and Onions, and Garlic Bread

::: Garlic Roasted Red Snapper or Teriyaki-Sesame Ahi Steak :::
with Coconut Rice, Black Beans and Corn

::: Honey Glazed Pork Chops or Roasted Tarragon Chicken Leg :::
Quinoa, Roasted Onions and Green Peas
::: Filet Mignon or Bacon-Wrapped Apple-Stuff Pork Loin:::
Yucca Puree, Mushroom Gravy and Sauteed Green Beans


::: Coconut and Rum Cheesecake :::

::: Carrot Cake :::

::: Vanilla Ice Cream Sundae :::

::: Baklava :::



16/2/2011 English Menu at Popa Paradise

( ::: Popa Paradise Beach Resort ::: )
Thursday Dinner Menu

Salads and Appetizers

::: Greek Salad with Bleu Cheese, Sun Dried Cranberries and Caesar Dressing :::
::: Fried Calamari with Garlic Aioli Dip :::
::: Homemade Naan Bread with Hummus Spread :::

Plato Principal

::: Coconut Crusted Baked Red Snapper or Teriyaki Seared Ahi Tuna Steak :::
with Gallo Pinto, Sautéed Vegetables and Popa Island Salsa Fresca

::: Caribbean Jerk Chicken Kebabs or Honey Glazed Pork Chops :::
with Quinoa and Corn Medley, Roasted Tomato and Culantro-Mustard Sauce

::: Filet Mignon :::
with Mashed Potatoes, Gravy and Roasted Zucchini


::: Baklava :::

::: Carrot Cake with Rich Cream Cheese Frosting :::

::: Hot Fudge Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream :::

16/2/2011 Spanish Menu at Popa Paradise

( ::: Popa Paradise Beach Resort ::: )
Menú de Cena del Jueves

Ensaladas y Aperitivos

::: La Ensalada Griega con Queso Azul, el Sol Secó Arándanos y a César Aliño :::
::: Calamares Fritos con Ajo Aioli :::
::: El Pan Casero de Naan con Paté de garbanzos :::

Plato Principal

::: El Coco Horneó Pargo Rojo o Teriyaki Quemó a Ahi Atún :::
con Gallo Pinto, Verduras e Isla de Popa Salsa Fresca

::: Los Kebabs Caribes del Pollo o la Miel Barnizaron Chuletas de Cerdo :::
con Quinoa y Mezcla de Maíz, Tomate Asado y Salsa de Culantro-Mostaza

::: Filete de Ternera :::
con Papas Trituradas, la Salsa de Carne y Calabacín Asado


::: Baklava :::

::: El Pastel de Zanahoria :::

::: El Bizcocho y Nueces de Chocolate con Helado de Vainilla:::


Adios Camera

Well, after my earlier blog post and breakfast I headed out on the kayak to the reef to do some kayak surfing and fishing. Little did I know that the kayak I was on had a leaky seal and filled with water rapidly. Next thing I know a swell moved in. A sudden wave tossed me off the kayak along with my camera and fishing pole... but my diving knife was well strapped to my leg with Daisy's (RIP) old dog collar just in case Jaws came. I flipped the kayak over, got back on and estimated I had 15 minutes before the entire kayak would be under water, so I paddled quickly. I was more than a kilometer out at sea and it was more like in 10 minutes the rear of the kayak was so filled with water the nose went straight up and me, once again, back in the sea getting hit with jelly fish. I tied the string attached to the kayak to my leg and swam to shore with a water logged kayak and no camera. Tomorrow I head into Bocas del Toro to buy groceries and if lucky, there will be a camera, but pricey it will be since there are only a few shops in Bocas and lots of tourist demands and honestly, I don't want to have to pay more than I have to... I'd rather just enjoy these next couple months in paradise and live the moment. As of now, this blog is going on a break. Sorry, but if you look at the post below you can get a sense of what's happening here and it will be like this til I leave in April. Godspeed, Chef Cody.

Solar Radiation

For the few days we have been booked with reservations and the breakfast cook was on vacation, so I pulled the typical 15-hour work days in the kitchen. Just when you think lunch is done at 2 PM... 8 day guests show up by boat looking for food because the sun is shinin and the weather is nice :)

Good morning. Here's 6:30 AM... right when the birds are making some crazy, exotic sounds
that I have never heard before.

On the contrary here is a little after sunset.

Prior to dinner service. Ambience.

The guitarista is doing his thang... calypso from the soul.

Terminator cutting 20 lbs. of Ahi Tuna that I get shipped in from the Pacific.

A few posts back I mentioned that I had marshmellows and was wanting to do something with them... I couldn't find any Rice Crispies in town, so I bought the local and generic Marshemellow and Stars cereal and made a crispy treat with them. I think it's safe to say that you will only find these here...

I had leftover bread dough after making four loaves of white bread.. with the remaining dough I add a bit more butter and sugar, rolled it out into a rectangle.. brushed it with butter.. topped it with canela, sugar, raisins and cashews.. rolled it up, brushed it, sealed it, baked it and am eating a piece right now.

To maximize my inventory I use leftover dinner proteins with some kind of combination of local starches, like plaintain or yucca, and local produce to create a Carribean themed dish that is healthy and a tasty. When I am running breakfast, lunch and dinner I manage inventory with a 3-day cycle that keeps everything fresh and no waste. Don't be afraid to make a lobster, prawn, chorizo and brie cheese omlet for the morning. Here are some prawn and chorizo kebabrs with patacones stuffed with salsa fresca.

Refried bean and cheese burritos, with patacones and sour cream.

Vegetable pizza... olives, peppers, onions, etc. Manchego cheese stuffed crust. Homemade crust... homemade sauce...

Around noon locals come with bags of giant lobster or buckets of snapper.

So I clean, cut and make ceviche.

Fried Calamari and Garlic Aioli.

Greek Salad with Caesar Dressing and Bleu Cheese.

King Prawn Salad.

Spicy black bean soup with patacones.

My plat principal mise en place.

Roasted lobster, candied orange, gallo pinto, corn and quinoa.

Filet mignon.

Pork loin stuffed with apple and wrapped in bacon.

Coconut crusted baked red snapper ontop a lentil and rice cake, with roasted fennel, zucchini and pineapple-cilantro sauce.

I had a bunch of leftover pizza ingredients... so I created this Mediterrarean Lobster Roulade with Manchego Cheese and Artichoke Hearts.

It was served ontop quinoa, below roasted tomato and caramelized onions, and in between a smooth spinach sauce.

Garlic seared red snapper ontop a black bean and coconut rice patty, surrounded by pineapple pico de gallo and passion fruit sauce.

The super Ahi steak ontop rice and a bunch of veggies slowly reduced with rum and natural juices.

Bacon wrapped lobster tail ontop a bed of quinoa and surrounded by roasted veggies. As you can see... I am working with the same ingredients and am just putting them together differently.

All of this ^ in the last three days. Time to go work on baklava. Each weekend for the next three weeks will be like this last weekend... super busy, but come late March it quiets down and especially in April I will get out more and show you more of the island life. I still gotta go snorkeling.


High Season #2 for Me in Panama

Starting today we are booked for the next two or three weeks. Time to get cooking. After being here for 20 days I now have a sense of place in the Popa Paradise kitchen.

Pizzas are popular for lunch.

This is what the giant roddent, the Paca, became. Filets of tasty carne.

Lobster fettuccine alfredo.

Asian chicken stir-fry.

My plating is getting better every day. In most situations, i.e. field camps and backpacker lodges, clients want large portions, but here.. in the fine dining district of Popa Island clients want petite yet pretty dishes. New territory for me, but so far everything is good.

And no... I did not 'create' the aura around my body, it just came with the picture.

Fishing next to the reef.

YEAAAHHH! A snack... haha, not really, I tossed it back in, better luck next time.

Here is what the locals caught...

Right when dude put the last 4 lb. lobster ontop of the rest, the scale broke sending the lobsters to the floor where they instantly took defense with their pinchers.

Dead serious, good timing on the photo eh?