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Current position of the SSV Corwith Cramer. Click on the vessel to view position history. Use the tools, top right, to change the map style or view data layers. Dates and times use GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

SEA Currents: SSV Corwith Cramer

May 05, 2018

Bucket List Before Bermuda

Alex Merkle-Raymond, B Watch, Northeastern University

Ship's Log

Current Position
30°34.99’N, 064°02.49’W

Course & Speed
333°T, 3.7 knots

Sail Plan
Three lowers (forestays’l, mainstays’l, mains’l)

Clear and starry

Taffrail log
1249.25 nm

Souls on Board

Just like anything else in the world, you can get in the rhythm of life at sea. Today we had our second "field day" where we scrub the ship from top to bottom for two full hours. It's the only time of the week when we can listen to music and it's nice to have five different speakers placed around the boat playing tunes as we scrub the main saloon with Envirox. It is truly fascinating how much dirt and loose hair 31 people can create in one week.

In just two days we will dock in Bermuda and the whole ship seems excited! Our steward, Christian, keeps talking about getting new herbs and bananas and eggplant and we all keep talking about the fun things we will make as Assistant Steward after the port stop.

My research project for hydroids has had an exceptionally exciting week where we think we found a new morphological type of the target species we have been studying. We have just put the DNA into the gel electrophoresis and are waiting to see if there are any positive results! Fingers crossed that we can send in over a dozen samples for genetic sequencing while we are stopped in Bermuda.

We are at the point now where 134 feet of boat is starting to feel pretty small and the lack of technology and land is wearing some people down. There are many times you just look down and wonder "what caused this bruise?" or your second box of samples all starts to look the same or you wonder how you ever looked up information about Ireland before the internet. Thankfully, the Cramer family looks out for each other and there is always someone to sneak you some dark chocolate or to play you a song on the guitar.

With the port stop so soon, it really reminds you how quick the voyage really is and how little time we have left on our new home. I made a quick bucket list of what I want to do with the rest of my trip (mainly for my moms but maybe others are interested too):

  1. Use the fluorometer! We use the fluorometer every two weeks to measure the extracted chlorophyll-a from a subset of our samples collected from surface stations and hydrocast samples taken at the deep chlorophyll maximum. We are trying to see what section of the water column is responsible for the majority of the chlorophyll-a production.
  2. Go to the top of the forem'st! I, personally, hate heights but I have been told by all the mates that the best view on the ship is from the top of the yards and I don't want to miss out. So far, I've only made it to the top of the course yard and I am slowly working my up to the top of the tops'l yard to try and see even further out.
  3. Learn Christian's yeast rolls! Our steward constantly makes amazing food, but he is known for his yeast rolls which I can't wait to learn so I can make them back on shore two. I had so much fun on my assistant steward day making snickerdoodles for "midrats" (the elusive sixth meal: midnight snack) that reminded me of home, but the boat has been a great time to try new foods and learn how to cook a starboard tack cake!

The Cramer and the Sargasso Sea have officially become a home away from home. The sway of the boat and the instinctive reflex to catch a water bottle falling off an un-gimbled table are now second nature. I love looking out at the sea and being able to estimate wave height without hesitation.

So excited to talk to you all in Bermuda so soon!

- Alex


P.S. Happy birthday GGF! Hope 21 is amazing and you have all the tacos. Sweet baby J the water bottle broke within the first week-you are always right.

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Marine Biodiversity & Conservation, • Topics: c279  sailing  study abroad  research  science • (0) Comments
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