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Sea Education Association | SEA Currents

SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer


Mar

19

The Final Countdown

Taylor Haist, Bowdoin College
SEA Semester Caribbean

Cramer sailing at sunset

Position
18° 21.9’ N x 74° 50.9’ W

Location
west of Haiti

Souls on Board

Jamaica was absolutely awesome! Both days were filled with some amazing adventures. Visiting the Maroon community was like walking through a snapshot of history, and Wallace Sterling (The Colonel) had so much to tell us. I also had so much fun hiking and climbing waterfalls with my shipmates the following day. But, the Cramer and C-264 have said goodbye to Jamaica and we have been slowly making our way towards Boca Chica for the past two days.

This is the longest leg of our trip. Six full days at sea. I know that many of my shipmates and I were very apprehensive about being at sea for so long, especially because sailing has been difficult with opposing winds and currents. But we have successfully made it through two full days, and are a third of the way through this final leg (without much seasickness!). I think that everyone is sad to see the six weeks come to an end, but everyone is enjoying spending this last week aboard with some great friends.

Life on the Cramer has been a little different these past few days because we have finally entered the JWO/JLO phase. Many of my shipmates and I have already been the Junior Watch Officer or Junior Lab Officer during these two days, and it has been a fun and exciting challenge to be (somewhat) in charge of the daily operations of the ship. Now we coordinate with Chris about sail plans and navigation, and we are in charge of deploying all the science equipment.

It's a lot of responsibility to have, but I think that each of us has risen to the challenge. It's a remarkable change from those first few days in Christiansted when we barely knew anything at all (although sometimes we still feel that way). The ship hasn't sunk yet, so I guess you could say that we know what to do now (I probably should not have said that since sailors seem to be a particularly superstitious bunch).

It has been a typical day at sea for us. Unfortunately, because of the opposing winds, we have been forced to motorsail for the majority of the past two days. We had some rain early this morning, but that was quickly forgotten when we saw a pod of dolphins, and everyone dropped what they were doing to check them out by the bowsprit. We also had a fire drill during afternoon class to keep us prepared. Other than that, today hasn't been all that eventful. My fellow shipmates and I have been working hard to finish our Coral Reef surveys and Change Project Presentations/Addendums. It's going to be a busy week, but I'm excited to see what we can all accomplish during these last few days as we make our way towards Boca Chica.

- Taylor

P.S. HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY ZOE! Sorry I couldn't be there to celebrate (or even have service to send you a Happy Birthday text). I hope it was an absolutely awesome day, and we will have to celebrate when I get back!

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