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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: The Global Ocean: New Zealand


March 07, 2020

Those who keep us afloat: The professional crew of the RCS

Grace Leuchtenberger, Carleton College

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Ocean life has treated us to a new lifestyle, new friendships, and most importantly, new guides in this strange world. The professional crew of the Robert C. Seamans is the force that has taught us everything from how to eat on a gimbaled table, to proper wake-up etiquette, to sail trimming and setting


March 05, 2020

Food at SEA

Etasha Golden, Oregon State University

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Food is a big part of our life on the Robert Seamans: we eat three meals (each with two sittings), and three scheduled snack times directly in-between meals every day. With six scheduled food times and extra snack freely available, it kind of feels like we are eating and cooking like Hobbits from JRR Tolkien’s realm of Middle Earth. Each day our ship’s steward makes breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies snack, “lunchin”, second “lunchin”, afternoon snack, supper, dinner, and midnight snack.


March 04, 2020

A Foul Undertaking

Tom Rubino, Carleton College

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Why do we become so excited when we see whale spouts? Or when a pod of dolphins can be seen swimming along the bowsprit? Or when the occasional Mola mola floats on by? As I peer off into the vastness of the open ocean, I see a beautiful desert; dynamic and fluid, yet, on the surface, practically devoid of life.


March 03, 2020

Human Uses of Ocean Space Census: Aotea Great Barrier Island

Ella Simon, Bennington College

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The nature of our adventure means we don’t always get to experience every moment of every day on the ship. I woke up to stillness the day we arrived at Aotea Great Barrier Island having slept through our anchoring in Kaiarara Bay. After hoisting myself out of my bunk and making my way on deck, I found myself completely surrounded by lush, green, jagged hills, and calm water in every direction.


March 03, 2020

Culture Shock on a Boat

Devin Goldsmith, Muhlenberg College

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As most students, my shipmates, aboard this research vessel would tell you, stepping foot onto the Robert C. Seamans was like walking into a whole new world. Stealing glances at the ship as we loaded our luggage onto it was intimidatin: the ropes (now dubbed “lines”) seemed tangled together and unmanageable; the crew members clamored their way onto the net at the bow of the boat (the bowsprit) like they didn’t have a fear in the world; Spring, one staff member, stood with bare feet on one of the yards about 20 feet above the boat, bending over upside-down to check the rigging.


March 01, 2020

The Modern Mariner

Juliette Bateman, Boston University

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This past Friday night may have marked one of my favorite nights aboard the Robert C. Seamans thus far. Yes - I really mean that, and we’ve had some pretty good times, so there’s definitely some strong competition. The class members of “Sense of Place” - a seminar-based +SEA elective that ponders the complexity of place-related connectedness through relevant literature, often specific to New Zealand and coastal/oceanic environments - put on a visual reading of “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” on the quarter deck.


March 01, 2020

Looking vs. Seeing: Appreciation is Active

Ashby Gentry, Boston University

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Though I would not consider myself a negative person, I would be lying if I said the label hadn’t been slapped upon me from time to time.  Believe me when I say that I have made significant attempts to improve my “negative aura,” which is why I have—to this day—filled out every single page of the daily positivity journal my mother gifted me for the New Year.


February 29, 2020

Looking Up

Annabel Weyhrich, University of Washington, Seattle

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It has been a little over two weeks and those of us aboard the Robert C. Seamans have become accustomed to life at sea. We have docked in harbors, sailed along coastlines, and explored out in the deep ocean. We have experienced calm waters and twelve-foot swells


February 27, 2020

Ain’t No Plankton like Towed Plankton

Anna Roethler, Carleton College

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I felt like I was entering a small labyrinth the first time I stepped onto this ship. The number of doors and different areas made this ship feel much bigger than just 41.2 meters. Yet at only 2 weeks of calling this ship home, I can easily navigate this labyrinth at 3 AM in rough seas while doing a boat check.

Categories: Robert C. Seamans,The Global Ocean: New Zealand, • Topics: None • (3) CommentsPermalink

February 27, 2020

Notes On The Upper Bunk

Amelia Austin, Smith College

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In between steep ocean swells, I grip the ladder rails for stability and lower myself below deck. My weight shifts side to side, and I stumble. The light remains dim but it must have looked as if I was walking in complete darkness with my hands out in front of me, making my way to my bunk. The port holes usually offer decent lighting below.


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