Current position of the SSV Robert C. Seamans. Click on the vessel to view position history. Use the tools, top right, to change the map style or view data layers.
SEA Currents: SSV Robert C. Seamans
Right Now is my Morning
16° 47.88’ S x 171° 23.40’ W
Ship’s Heading & Speed
175° at 2kts
(We are doing a Neuston tow, that‘s why it’s so slow)
Scattered Showers, 29°C
(Way less than the million it was in Pago Pago)
Thinking back on signing up for my blog day I might have wanted to pick a different one. Today I had Dawn watch, so I woke up at midnight and then slept through most of the sunlight day. But regardless I will tell you all about this strangely structured day.
Around midnight I woke up to the Seamans motor sailing in light wind. Bex, our amazing steward, left out rice krispies treats for a midnight snack so I had great fuel of that and coffee to start out my watch. Right at 0100 Rocky, 3rd mate and my watch officer, put me on helm. My orders were to steer 175° and tell him when I was more than 10° off. It took me about a half hour to not be 10° off and I never stayed in range for more than 10 minutes. It turns out steering a 300ish ton boat that is back heavy and floating is way harder than I thought.
After my time on the helm, I got to be bow lookout. My memory of my time as bow lookout was part of why I came back to SEA and I could not have been more excited. It was as amazing as I remember. There was bioluminescence below the boat, the Milky Way totally visible above, there were shooting stars, and the entire world spread out in front of me. Even better than I remember was that I could sing as loudly and badly as I wanted without anyone hearing. It’s even better than the shower. So I sat out on the bow, belting show tunes, and watching the boat move across the world.
Not everything about watch was blissfully watching the world. About half our watch was down with sea sickness and we are almost all living off of the medicine for it. We also don’t have our sea legs yet so my legs are covered in bruises from not knowing how to stand anymore.
After watch, around 0700, C watch got to eat breakfast and did dawn clean up, meaning we cleaned the soles (floors), heads (bathrooms), and ladders before finally getting to go to bed. Today, my night time was from 0800 to 1300 which would have been great but the wind picked up and I, in my far fore bunk, was actually able to catch air while coming down from some of the waves. But, the day carried on and my morning (or second morning I can’t really tell anymore) is about now.
While I’m writing this there is a Neuston net in the water that we just finished learning how to deploy. We do this by trimming the sails so that we basically drift along at 2kts, which feels like a crawl after the eight we were doing last night. I will be on watch again at 1900 until 0100 tomorrow and intend to do some coffee and sleep deprivation-fueled science in the lab during that time.
Shout out to Arden – All the sea birds in Pago Pago harbor looked like pterydactyls and it felt like we were in a Jurassic Park movie.
Shout out to Kippy – I did this so early so you would have evidence that I am alive and well.