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SEA Currents: SSV Robert C. Seamans
December 07, 2015
Sounds on a Ship and Fish!
A sea and sky bubble 1 week out from land
Description of location
blue seas and sky & lots of Sargassum & many more boats nearby
however fast the taffrail log is spinning
sunny skies with a chance of awesome clouds!
where the stars lead us
Hello family and friends of everyone aboard!
It's funny how different places have such different and distinctive background sounds, many times subtle, sometimes not. I have realized though that the sounds and noises are a special part of a place and I have vivid memories and feelings towards the sounds of my home like the tree katydids and bullfrogs of the summer, the rustling leaves and wind in the bare trees of late fall, and the quietness and stillness of snow falling in the winter-many of which become background noises and maybe aren't taken notice of. But, when you leave a place and you can't quite figure out what you miss so much about it, think about the sounds that maybe aren't as noticeable.
One thing here on the boat is that it is never completely quiet. It can be relatively quiet at night on bow lookout but there is always movement which inherently results in sound, never any complete stillness like when you go out on a winters night to look at the stars and it is absolutely silent.
Anyways, living on the Cramer has a certain sound and different parts have their own unique noises but many things are heard throughout the ship. Just as I write this now, the triangle is being rung for the second seating of dinner-a sound of relief for the off going watch and summons all the hungry souls. There's an underlying hum from the engine room that resonates throughout the ship more so aft in the boat where my bunk is. It's funny because as I go to sleep I hear the trusty boat checkers going in and out but it's not the noise of the door opening that I notice but the sound of the rushing air and pressure waves of the sound coming from the space.
There's also the constant breaking of waves and gurgling of water as the hull slices through the sea. This is a less consistent drone, but continues ceaselessly. Down below, there's the clinking of dishes from the galley-sometimes turning to crashes as big rolls knock pots and pans into each other-not a pleasant sound or one that I think I'll ever get used to.
On deck, the sails flap and snap as they catch and fill with wind and sometime the lines groan as they strain under the great tension. Constant voices are heard around- talking science, navigation, food, the clouds, and games of cribbage. And my favorite is when people decide to bring out the instruments here onboard to play tunes. I know some people are suffering from lack of music/ipod withdrawals and the field day ipod playing just doesn't do it; though I don't think I really feel this way too, hearing singing, ukeles, a banjo, guitar or fiddle intermittent throughout watch or while working is really nice. The music is a wonderful addition to the wind in the sails.
On a completely different note, today we had a long anticipated event: we finally caught a mahi mahi! Scott and Mickey deserve most of the credit for religiously making sure the fishing gear is trailing behind the boat all
daylight hours (not during science) and have worked so hard to figure out the right bait to use. Finally, after many bites, some losses and too small fishies, a large rainbow fish was caught and filleted to be eaten with
dinner-just enough for everyone to have a few small pieces and tastes. It was delicious!
To my family religiously reading this- I miss you all so much and cannot wait to see you and talk to you in not such a very long time! Alison-every time I come across a squid while processing the Neuston net tow, I think of you. And to all my friends scattered as seemingly far as the stars across the sky-I miss you and can't wait to see you soon!