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SEA Currents: SSV Corwith Cramer

November 24, 2018

Conversations of a Good Kind

Bryce O’Brien, Bates College

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Class in Villa 4 – a time to reflect on Far Tortuga and our Grenada experiences.

Ship's Log

Souls on board

Waz up yung dogs of erth,

Hello and happy belated Thanksgiving! There was an awesome amount of gratitude expressed throughout the weekend and I’d like to take this opportunity to send some home!

Today was a relaxing change of pace compared to yesterday’s snorkel survey. The day began in the professors’ villa with a discussion of what went well during the snorkel survey. Jeff stressed big picture issues like staying on top of data entry and sample processing.

Ben followed with a discussion of the first half of Peter Matthiessen’s novel Far Tortuga. We discussed Matthiessen's ability to depict the vanishing culture of sea turtle fishing using sailing schooners in the mid-twentieth century. To conclude the conversation, we explored themes of environmentalism throughout the novel. Matthiessen uses the story of a fishing vessel to portray diminishing turtle populations.

Captain Sean officially took over the Corwith Cramer today! He is living full time on the ship and we miss his contributions to our mealtime conversations.

Our time as shipmates is coming closer to reality. This felt particularly true as I listened to Kalina discuss vessel logistics this afternoon. She answered questions about meal schedules, watch duties, and other aspects of life at sea.

The conversation changed topics over lunch to graduate school. As an aspiring chemical oceanographer myself, Kalina's advice and reflections from pursuing a PhD in oceanography were particularly insightful.

After lunch, several classmates sailed the resort's hobbie cat (a small sailboat) and Ryanne spotted a sea turtle! The rest of the afternoon rolled on as a humid dog day. Some students read, while others journaled or napped.

During dinner, as we enjoyed live music and lionfish, several of my classmates and I had an interesting conversation about the importance of local journalism, considering the impact it has on the way people understand events in their immediate communities. The recent shark attack in Cape Cod exemplified this. Although I have not read the local coverage following the attack, several of my classmates felt that the way local papers discussed possible intervention measures lacked scientific consideration, potentially providing misleading information detrimental to shark advocacy.

As the night progressed, a group of classmates-- myself included--found ourselves at a neighborhood dancehall called Bananas. We danced our friggin’ hearts out and walked home with pit stains. A classic day on the islands.

- Bryce O’Brien, Bates College

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Caribbean Reef Expedition, • Topics: c283  coral reefs  caribbean. • (0) Comments
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