SEA Currents: life at sea
Moments, Memories, Meaning
Always, always, always I find myself struggling to find the right words to wrap up a voyage. Inherently it is an unsolvable problem, a hopeless effort to address a seemingly simple question - ‘So, how was the trip?’, which in truth is a prelude to an overwhelming sense of confusion.
Pre-Key West Poster Presentations
As I write this, the students of C-271 are breaking down the posters they created to reflect on-site observations they made and the conversations they had with people regarding their individual projects in our four port stops. The “ground truthing” of the research they did ashore, while not necessarily contradicting what they learned from published sources available to them in Woods Hole, has certainly given each of them more to think about in terms of issues ranging from cultural preservation and marine resource management to diversification of island economies and human impacts on humpback whales.
Where Oh Where are the Whales?
After arriving on deck to begin afternoon watch I learned, from a reliable source, that we were sailing in a whale sanctuary. To some this fact would be described as “cool” or “exciting”, but to me this information was life altering. I love whales. I admit it. Maybe a little too much, but I have dreamed of one day seeing these majestic creatures up close and personal. Yet the sea, at least what was visible on the surface, was absent of whales.
I would like to use this opportunity to thank my parents. I know I am definitely prone letting all the things they do for me go unacknowledged. When I told them that I was thinking about applying for a semester on a boat that sailed around the Caribbean it was easy to hear the reservation in their voices. What type of boat? A sailing type I assured them. Where would it go? A few islands, definitely Cuba and Jamaica. These were the types of questions they asked and the types of answers I gave. Having now been on the boat, having sailed around the Caribbean I am acutely aware that I didn’t really know what I was going into.
Hello from the other side… of the Gulf Stream
We are extremely close to Florida, just about 100 miles away. We spent last night anchored in Bahamian waters, but this morning the anchor started dragging as a cold front passed our location so we got underway and then we heaved to in order to drift for the remainder of the afternoon so we could comfortably focus on our oceanography presentations.
The Sounds of Bob
Since we’ve left Wellington, reminiscence that starts like “I’m really going to miss.” has begun to filter into our everyday conversations. The other day, sitting on a port-side deck box, Elsbeth and I couldn’t stop talking about how much we’re going to miss good old steady Bob, our uncreative yet endearing nickname for the Robert C. Seamans. When you live on a 135-foot boat and it’s your job to attend to the details it’s easy to become hyper-familiar with every nook and cranny.
A Banner Cramer Day
Greeting from the Bahamas once again loyal readers!
Today was a day aboard the Cramer that one dreams about. It started with me and the rest of C Watch at 11:30 with a watch meeting on the doghouse top amidst a beautiful sunny Caribbean morning. We all shared our high tide and low tides for the past week, gave out beads as special acknowledgements of good deeds, and then had time for reflection.
Reporting live from the Robert C. Seamans! Guess who is leading the troops this dawn watch as J-WO (Junior Watch Officer)? THE SAVAGE as my fellow teammates like to call me (it is also my last name). This entails overseeing the deck and wellbeing of the ship along with making sure hourly checks (boat checks, engine check, navigation) are being done. Who knew that this would be the most challenging part of this program for me personally?
Hello and Good Evening Family, Friends, and Readers!
I first want to start today’s blog to tell all of you that we are all well and having the times of our lives! We had a small change of plans with our second port stop in Cuba, but turned out ok because we got to go to this gorgeous little island called Great Inagua. We did some beachcombing, some snorkeling, and some much needed relaxing. Since Great Inagua, we have consistently been going 6-8kts (except for times where we are deploying science).
A Good Swim and a New Phase
Hello from the Corwith Cramer! We are well and busy here – let me catch you up on the last couple of days aboard the ship.
Only a short time after our excellent port stop in Santiago, we reached a quiet, peaceful island called Great Inagua on the southern side of the Bahamas. Rather than the white sand and coral rubble it is made of, the cool waters surrounding the island is where we spent most of our short stop.