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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

October 25, 2016

Goodbye Fiji

Emily Chang, B Watch, Mount Holyoke College

SPICE

Ship's Log

Current Position
19° 17’ S x 177° 41’ E

Ship’s Heading & Speed
211° & 6 knots

Weather
Semi-cloudy, getting colder

Souls on Board

Great news! We’ve just started the 12 day leg to Auckland—and four out of eight of my watchmates have already donated to Neptune. It’s been a rough start for B Watch. That aside, a lot of us are recovering pretty well and are adjusting faster to seasickness. As I reflect on the beginning of the last part of our sailing component, I’m struck by how fast time has passed. When I look at the various photos that my shipmates have taken, I can still remember the activities and fun of each day.

My shipmates and I have also gotten final notice on all our assignments. The end is really approaching, and I’m not sure how to feel about it. A part of me wants to say “experience the present and don’t worry about the end.” Oftentimes I think too far out in the future. Yet, for this adventure, I’ve stayed very much in the present. Vomiting tends to do that for me.

Class today was really interesting. During our travels in Fiji, we met a family from New Zealand building drua (traditional Fijian watercraft) and asked ourselves whether their building of a traditional Fijian sailing vessel crossed ethical boundaries. Our class presented various viewpoints and never came to a conclusion. In fact, our answers prompted more questions that delved deeper into subjects of colonialism, privilege, capitalism, and other such topics. Was it okay for the family to be profiting off the Fijian sailboat through a tourism business? Even though there will be personal monetary gain, the family still employs Fijian sailors who could use their knowledge as a means for personal sustenance. I think that it’s fine that we didn’t reach a conclusion. These are difficult issues that people have taken years to even figure out the right questions to ask.

Overall, I’m excited to continue my learning experience with my classmates. We’ve just seen the last of land for a while and will be sailing straight for the next week and a half.

Shoutout to Andrew Prunk and Bex for making amazing pretzel snacks. Finally, happy birthday to Professor Mr. Sir Sir’s (Jeff Wescott’s) mother!

Emily

Previous entry: ‘Au i Ke Kai Me He Manu Ala    Next entry: Auckland or Bust

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