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 15, 2014
What are we doing?
36° 50. 494’ S x 174° 45.856’ E
Princes Wharf, Auckland, New Zealand
Unpredictable. Raining, wind gusts up to 40mph, sometimes a bit of sunshine.
Friday, 14 November 2014
Seeing the boat for the first time brought together everything we had been working on for the last six weeks. Suddenly, it was real. We met on the dock and had a mini reunion with our fellow students; it was as if we hadn’t seen each other in months, not just a few days. But then it was time to get down, salty, dirty, tough and exhausted.
Ship orientation had begun.
We were assigned to our watches (shout out to C watch being the best, but Devon and I are biased. I’m sure the other watches are great, too) and began to learn about the ship, the schedule, more about the people we had known for the last few weeks, and the crew members that we were just meeting today.
The food here is AMAZING. The beds are small with thin mattresses, but somehow are more comfortable than a king at a Hilton. Seasickness is already hitting some (and probably the rest once we get underway, the waves are gnarly). And life is wonderful.
Saturday, 15 November 2014
The rain fell in a steady drizzle all day, and the information started coming in a deluge that may not slow for weeks - but we are confident we can handle it. The first set of information dumped on our fresh(ish) brains was emergency procedures and responsibilities. In between the day’s activities, our steward Vickie kept up the phenomenal standard set by yesterday’s meals. I can safely say that no matter what dangers and hardships await us on this cruise, hunger will not be one of them.
The Voyageur Maritime Museum we visited this afternoon was certainly interesting, but for some of us the Walking Waterfront Tour was actually more informative. There was evidence of infrastructure development over time and of serious efforts by the city to make the area friendlier to the public. Auckland has a very attractive waterfront, rife with opportunities to eat, drink, and be merry. Modern housing sits on much of the harbor edge, looking across the busy bay to the looming Mt Eden, one of the region’s many volcanoes and site of a thriving neighborhood. Similar to the Boston waterfront which we toured earlier in this program, most of the land is man-made. After a hike up to the marker on Fort Street where the natural waterline used to be, the ocean was far from sight. It’s interesting to observe that we change the environment just as much as it changes us.
After dinner we were finally introduced to our first watch duties. These were extensive - everything from checking toilet water levels to making sure the engine isn’t on fire. C Watch’s first shift was cut short, and the later watches enjoyed their last taste of dance music from a nearby restaurant/bar. Everyone is anxious to get underway, but enjoying contact with dry land while we still can. This blog is now our only connection with all you friends and family, so stay tuned!
- Kate & Devon