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
February 25, 2015
On Burritos and Sextants
42° 25’ 40.8” S x 177° 07’ 52.8” E
East of Wellington, 100 nautical miles offshore.
One of the harder things to keep track of on the ship is the incredible amount of food that we are eating. 3 meals a day and 3 snacks strategically placed a few hours after meal times to help wash meals down. Behind the scenes of these meals, we have our amazing steward, Lauren, who has been mentioned before on this blog. Today was a special day for Lauren-it was her day off! And her place was filled with the professional crew on the ship.
Willie and Trevor, the engineers, started off strong with breakfast burritos. I myself was particularly excited for these, and forced myself to wake up from my "Sleep of Kings" (the sleeping time after midnight watch ending at 0300) just to partake. Worth it. The meals that followed were not to be outdone. All cooked by the crew who have taught us so much and who continually reveal all sorts of skills that we might never have guessed they had.
As we enter this second phase, the shadow phase, the skills that we are learning continue to surprise us. We are really becoming part of a well-oiled team that knows how to take care of their home to continue living well. Expectations are higher than ever, and we can turn to these people that competently handle any sail line put near them just as well as the spatula and bread pans in the galley. Today really seemed to highlight the importance of that as the deck crew portion of A watch learned to use a sextant. With this traditional tool of navigation we measure the angle between our location and the point on the earth that the sun is directly over at that moment. When we compare this to charts created by people much smarter than I who understand how these things work, we can calculate our exact position within a few hundred feet. This is all of course once we
learn to use the sextant properly, which can be a tricky proposition.
It will be interesting to transition from a place where we are totally surrounded by a flat horizon back to land. We are barely beginning to understand what it means to go to sea, and how much knowledge we have to learn from those that went before us. We have barely scratched the surface, but with enough food in our stomachs I think we can do a bit more. Especially if there are more breakfast burritos.