I wouldn't have had to get up so early if it weren't for the flamenco dancer. Yesterday, everybody was thinking today was going to be tight -- that we needed to get done in time for our uplink at about 18:00 -- and so we needed to start at the ungodly hour of 07:30. It fell to me to point out that yesterday was a two-sol plan. So we need to be done by about 18:00 tomorrow. In other words, we have plenty of time. We could start at noon.
I think I could have convinced Saina, but at a crucial moment, Ashley plugged for an early start. Turns out she had tickets to a flamenco demonstration and wanted to leave early.
Et tu, brute?
Since I have these physical therapy exercises to do in the morning, I have to get up at 05:30 to get here by 07:30. So my brain's not firing on all cylinders. Good thing it's an easy day. We spent four hours last night working ahead on the drive and IDD work, which helped. The IDD work gets cut down to nothing but a tool change and a pre-drive stow, so we didn't need to spend the time on it after all, but it was good practice for Terry.
And the time-consuming part of this particular drive was the analysis, which we did last night. We ended up favoring a straight path across the top of Home Plate, cutting off a corner that will save us a drive sol or two without skipping much section. (The corner we're cutting is more or less level with the surrounding terrain, so it exposes little if any stratigraphy.) We can do the whole thing blind; it takes about an hour to do the whole sequence.
Everybody's impressed by the roughly 30m drive, which makes me think just one thing: our standards have fallen most alarmingly. Time was, we routinely did twice or thrice that distance, and thought nothing of it. I'm going to bring those days back, by sheer willpower if I have to. You just watch me.
[Next post: sol 774, March 8.]
 Recovering from shoulder surgery.