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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

April 04, 2015

Deep Clean

Conard Lee, C Watch, Grinnell College

Oceans & Climate

Arthur, Avalon, Maya, and Kelsey down on deck. Photo credit to Matt Hemler on this glimpse from aloft.

Ship's Log

Current Position
42° 55.5’ S x 167° 33.0’ W

Course & Speed
081 True, 8.5 knots

Sail Plan
4 lower sails (Jib, main stays’l, fore stays’l, mains’l)

Overcast skies, perfectly windy

Souls on Board

The past two days have been a simultaneously exciting and exhausting experience for me. Yesterday I faced my fear of heights and climbed up the foremast by way of the ratlines running up the mast. This experience was at once terrifying and exhilarating, a feeling which has often been described as the “sublime,” and I must say that sublime wasn’t one of the words in my head during that time. I would even go so far as to say that no real words were said in those minutes my feet were far above the deck. I think an apt description of that time would be “Pathetic whimpering punctuated by occasional shouts of dismay.” However, once I got to the fighting top, a kind of platform towards the top of the mast, I stopped making sounds altogether and stared with rapt attention at the horizon. You might think there isn’t much to see out in the middle of the ocean, and while that is true to an extent, there is a surprising amount of variation between ocean from the deck and ocean from two stories above the deck. A stunning amount, if you will. It was a shock, to say the least, to see no other signs of life but seabirds for miles and miles around our little world. In any case, the experience was well worth the fear of going up and down the mast (going down was actually worse, if you believe it). I went to bed with a feeling of satisfaction with the day.

“Field Day in 15 minutes,” came my wakeup this afternoon. For a moment I was excited for fun in the sun, and images of field days in elementary school flashed through my head. That nostalgic image was soon shattered by the reality of field day aboard the SSV Robert C Seamans. The deep clean to end all deep cleans was in store for us this day. We mustered on the quarterdeck for a brief session of announcements and a surprise puppet show. The puppet show told the tale of Seamanslandia, a peaceful land ruled by a stoic and excellent king. This peaceful kingdom was under attack by the vicious and pervasive MUNGDROIDS, beings of pure filth here to threaten and infect this pristine land. However, all was not lost. Our rescuers Lieutenant Envirox and Admiral Squeegee saved the day, lysing these filthy invaders into bits of nothing, and casting their remains onto the wind. The only catch was that we, the denizens of Seamanslandia, needed to direct these heroes to their destination. It took several hours, but the Mungdroids were vanquished with many a jolly cry of “Defeat the Mung!” The land of Seamanslandia was safe at last. This was an exhaustive deep clean, but was well worth it. Even now, the lingering scents of orange cleaning supplies hang in the air, and everyone is satisfied with the clean ship. A clean ship is a happy ship, after all.

Sparklingly yours,

Categories: Robert C. Seamans,Oceans & Climate, • Topics: s258  sailing • (2) Comments


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 Grandpa on April 06, 2015

Bravo, Conard T. Lee!

#2. Posted by Wendy Ormont on April 06, 2015

(Who knows when you’ll get these comments. Marine traffic web page keeps saying you’re out of range. So great to have the SEA blogs.) Congratulations on the climb. I love reading your blogs. I’m proud of all of you as you face your daily challenges, and enjoy the beauties you encounter around you. For Matt H- who knew where summer trips to the ocean shore, risky climbs to the top of trees, and rolling amusement park rides would lead. - Matt’s Mom



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