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
November 19, 2018
Anchored off of Russell, Bay of Islands
Beautiful? Squally? Both?
Today's the day; S-283 and crew weigh anchor and leave Russell and the Bay of Island behind and begin our transit out to the Kermadecs. The ships company woke to a beautiful morning at anchor in Russell, NZ. Sabrina, our amazing steward, prepared a delicious breakfast for us all before a 0830 muster on the quarter deck. At this time, chores had been done and bunks had been stowed and made sea ready. It was all hands to weigh anchor, as everyone was ready and excited to be getting underway.
Our stop in the Bay of Islands was wonderful. There is a certain awe that comes from being in a place that you have read so much about. There is almost an air of disbelief in looking around from our anchorage and seeing the lights from Russell off our port and the hills of Paihia and the Waitangi treaty grounds to our starboard. The sights which had become so familiar in the pages of my MHC reader were suddenly staring back at me. While our days at anchor were filled with culture, knowledge, and so many laughs, I still ache to feel the swells of the ocean rolling under our ship, and feel a constant wind blowing over the quarter deck, all despite my own bout of sea sickness a few days earlier.
As a group of landlubbers, on our short passage from Auckland, I could feel a level of comfort settling in over my shipmates and me and our sea legs becoming a little sturdier, we all got a little more salty. But just as a routine began to set in, we were back at anchor and that momentum felt stifled. So hearing the anchor chain raise and the boat start to breathe in the freedom from her tether, I couldn’t help but be excited. I serve as the helmswoman for general quarters, so for all hands call for getting underway I was stationed at the helm. This gave me a view of the deck as we begun to pull away from the anchorage, past the treaty grounds and crossing ferry boats. I was able to watch my shipmates move across deck to set the stays’ls, remove mains’l sail ties, and heard the “Two, Six, HEAVE” as they worked to raise our mains’l halyard, and I could feel that they shared in my excitement. We all were saying goodbye to dry land for two weeks, a concept that is difficult to get a grasp on.
As we are underway now, and are experiencing our first line of squalls, and that reality is setting in, we are really doing this. I look forward with great anticipation to the next two weeks and the opportunity to settle into life at sea. I look forward to the squalls and swells, the sunsets and sunrises, and every meal in-between. I look forward to experiencing all that lies ahead of us with my shipmates. I am no longer waiting, I am sailing.
Sarah Stratton Patulak, C - Watch, University of Connecticut Avery Point