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Current position of the SSV Robert C. Seamans. 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 Robert C. Seamans

July 28, 2021

A cool, wild breeze that you wish you could hold in your hand

Duncan Jackson, Third Scientist

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The feeling of a comforting fog blanket

Ship's Log

Position:
38° 13.2’ N x 124° 55.8’ W

Heading:
085°

Speed:
4.7 knots

Sail Plan:
The four lowers

Weather:
Point Reyes type of misty

Wind:
340°, 13 knots

Description of location:
91 miles from Point Reyes

Souls on Board

Title: A cool, wild breeze that you wish you could hold in your hand

This morning something changed. As I awoke at 9, unnaturally early for me this trip, it seemed as though something from my dreams was beckoning me from my bunk. I don't know how many others felt this magic, as I crawled through the dog house towards the deck the boat was silent and still. When I emerged on the quarter deck, the change I had felt was made apparent. The sky was grey, as before, but somehow closer. The cool heavy air was soothing and crisp, enveloping and hugging the boat in thick blankets of fog. It was all too familiar.

I smiled. I knew we must be close now.

Having grown up between Point Reyes and another small town, I was lucky enough to live so close to nature that I developed a unique understanding of and relationship with the land. The obsessive number of hours I've spent walking the trails of the peninsula, feeling the sea cliff mist, drinking the heavy air, breathing the pines that grow on the ridge, have all brought me so close to this piece of the earth that sometimes I swear I could hear its whisper.

Maybe that's why I've spent years of my life wandering over the same piece of land. I've walked the same trails many times searching, my senses guiding me. Just when I think I've seen what isn't there, some shadow between the trees, the whispered voice calls just a little louder. It's always right behind me, I turn and retrace my footsteps, like I'm looking for something special that I've dropped. As I wind and spin through the forests and grasslands of Point Reyes, it moves my body in this sort of blissful spell, like I'm dancing with something invisible, like its showing me everything that could be beautiful in this world.

This voice, this mystifying but enchanting power is something that I've been waiting to share with the crew. The power of its captivation is so strong, it's no wonder I could feel it all the way out here, over a hundred miles away. Like the low whisper of the land, I've been careful not to speak too loud on my excitement for making landfall in this special place. I'm afraid if I expel too much air, I might blow out this soft candle of hope. On the ocean, our existence is weather-dependent, and I don't want to make promises I can't keep. Now, on what it seems may be the eve of our arrival, I eagerly wait to see the smiles of my fellow crewmate. I know each of us has been needing some change lately. I hope something joyous and rejuvenating will drift off the land and reach us on some whisp of wind howling off the bluff, like the sound of a voice, or maybe a coyote.

I have been reminded of a haiku that I wrote years ago while looking at Point Reyes from the window of an airplane. I can't remember if it was one of the Bohemian artists that came to call this place home, or the native Miwok that called it the solemn land.

The leather ocean
Splits land under a thick fog
Like a broken heart


Duncan Jackson
Third Scientist

Hi Mom, Dad, Ellie! Hopefully I'll see you tomorrow!

Categories: Robert C. Seamans, • Topics: life at sea  s-299 • (3) Comments

Reactions

Leave a public comment for students and crew to read when they reach their next port and have access to the internet!

#1. Posted by Marnie Jackson on August 02, 2021

Duncan that was so beautiful and poetic. I love the photo! We love you and are proud of you. Mom Dad and Ellie


#2. Posted by Jillian Saxty on August 02, 2021

I didn’t know you were such a good writer and poet! Lovely! I hope you caught a glimpse of the flag you’re Dad was waiving from the shore. Love you lots! xoxo


#3. Posted by Whit Jackson on August 02, 2021

Welcome home D-Man!!

When we saw that the Seamans was about 20 NM from The Point, we raced out to the lighthouse to look for you…but of course there was fog. We scrambled over to Chimney Rock and from there we saw the ship emerge from the mist. It was such a thrill to see everyone on board as you sailed into a welcoming Drakes Bay. Hope you could hear us yelling and cheering from shore.

Dad


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