After the last cargo issue was solved, we were able to sail out of port in the evening of the 23rd of December. However, as we still have to strictly follow the Covid-hygiene measures for a few more days, Christmas could not be celebrated in the usual way on board the RV Polarstern. Luckily our chief cook Sven and his kitchen and service crew treated us with lovely meals in a festively decorated mess room. Now we are all ready and fully charged with energy to start a busy week with lots of work while crossing the stormy southern Atlantic Ocean. Plenty of research equipment are being unstowed from the cargo containers, then assembled and installed in the various laboratories and on deck. The marine biologists and the oceanographers have a busy week ahead of them with water sampling from large depths as well as deploying and collecting oceanographic instruments at different locations along the long transit way to Neumayer Station III.