Ready for an adventure with a purpose? Request info »
  • Search SEA Semester, Summer and High School Programs

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 03, 2015

Off the grid, On the dairy

Meredith Clark, A Watch, Denison University


S-262 Students join with students from the National University of Samoa for a day sail out of Apia, Samoa.

Ship's Log

13° 49.6’S, 171° 45.7’W

Alongside in Apia Harbor, Samoa. At port for 3 more days before heading to Wallis

Sunny, scattered clouds, winds force 4 from ESE

Souls on Board

My day started with Bea saying “Meredith, Meredith, its 6:54.” On the ship the off-coming watch wakes up the oncoming watch, which is actually a pretty pleasant way of waking up, even if it’s 2:50AM in the morning.

Today, we had students from the both the Maritime and Marine Science Programs at the National University of Samoa join us for a day sail. About half the SEA students stayed aboard and showed our visitors around the ship and taught them some of the sailing knowledge we have learned over the past few days aboard. Teaching the students how to coil and sweat the lines proved to myself and the other SEA students how much knowledge we had accumulated over our short time sailing. During the day sail we also did three science stations. Two were Shipek grabs, used to grab sediment from the sea floor and the other was with the carousel, which we use to collect water samples at different depths. It was really fun to see how our interests in marine science and nautical science joined us with the Samoan students.

After our day sail we got free time and headed over to a nearby marine protected area to snorkel. Swimming out to the reef was a much-needed source of aerobic activity since all students happily eat three meals and three snacks a day. Cordelia and I had a great time exploring the corals and examining the fish swimming by us. At one point we even saw a 1 ½ foot blue starfish. It was pretty dope. To add to our amazing day, we dried off, played on the swings at the beach, then treated ourselves to a milkshake (as if the day couldn’t get better we added dairy to top it off).

As I sit here writing this blog I cannot stop reflecting on how genuinely happy I am right now. Not just in this singular moment, but also in this general time in my life, I cannot think of a better place I could be. While I miss my family (Hi family!) and friends (Hi friends!) immensely, it is an amazing relief to be unplugged. I can stand at the bow as lookout during night watch and hear only the sound of the wind on my face and the waves crashing on the hull of the boat. Everyone talks and jokes with each other constantly, and there are no cellphones or headphones to interrupt the authentic human interaction.

Speaking of human interaction--tomorrow I’ll have another voice waking me up saying, “Meredith, Meredith, wake up, were going to the Fish Market.”

Happy trails, happy sails,

Categories: Robert C. Seamans,Sustainability in Polynesian Island Cultures & Ecosystems, • Topics: None • (4) Comments
Previous entry: Do the Jive    Next entry: Wet and Wild: A Samoan Adventure


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 Whitney on October 05, 2015

Hi Mere! Great post!! So happy to hear you are loving life on the ship and being disconnected. Can’t wait to hear more!
Love & miss you lots!

#2. Posted by Robert on October 05, 2015

Meredith Clark,

Jennifer and I are very excited to hear what a great time that you’re having. I think being unplugged can lead to so much more meaningful interaction. Can’t wait to read more.

Uncle Robert

#3. Posted by Vicky on October 08, 2015


What an incredible experience to be so unplugged from technology but so plugged into real life; nature, people, the ocean, and to the creativity and concentration required to learn new skills. We can’t wait to hear more about your adventures!
Wishing you much love and safety and joy.

Much Love,

#4. Posted by Haley on October 15, 2015

Hi Mere! Thinking of you lots and your time out at sea while you’re unplugged from the rest of the world. So proud and inspired always by your sense of adventure and curiosity. Miss you lots and can’t wait to read more!



Add a comment:

Notify me of follow-­up comments?

I would like SEA to keep me informed about news and opportunities.