SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer
November 13, 2017
A Life Changing Adventure Coming to a Close
11° 48.9’ N x 057° 52.7’ W
Description of location
220 nm east of Grenada
Weather / Wind/ Sail plan
Easterly winds, occasional squalls, running under the main’sl, forestay’sl, and top’sl.
“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon for each day to have a new and different sun.” –Jon Krakauer
Where do I even begin? It’s crazy to think that this is our last week aboard the SSV Corwith Cramer. It is truly bittersweet. Projects are being wrapped up, the Cramer has made its way to becoming an entirely student run vessel, and the destination lies ahead. How incredible it is to say that at such a young age, I was privileged enough to have traversed the Western North Atlantic, approximately 2200 nautical miles? I look back on the past 5 weeks and think about all the incredible things we have learned and accomplished. Yesterday, my watch (C Watch) was ordered to set the Jib.
As a watch, we determined what needed to be done, assigned people to certain positions, and completed our task. I was positioned at the halyard along with an amazing new friend of mine, Mercer. Hauling on the halyard is an easy task in the beginning, yet gradually increases in difficulty as the sail goes up. We were working hard, rhythmically hauling on the line, and I couldn’t help but smile. About 2 months ago we were all in a classroom with little to no sailing experience and now, here we are working as a team and performing these tasks all on our own. It felt so rewarding.
One thing I found so incredible about this voyage was our disconnection to the outside world. Here on the Cramer, we receive little to no news or updates about what is going on in the mainland and honestly, it is pretty refreshing. In this day in age, we live in a world where we are entirely revolved around what is going on and what will happen next. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to be connected, but sometimes we just need to take a step back and unplug. It allows us to truly understand the feeling of being connected with nature and each other. My favorite moments while aboard the Cramer are the ones that can’t be captured in a picture or video. One evening after a long day of work, a few of were relaxing out on the quarter deck as we watched the sun gently sneak behind the horizon with a variety of pink and orange clouds delicately painted across the sky. Meanwhile, a couple crew members gathered around with their banjos and guitars. They played songs like “Leaving on a Jet Plane” and the whole quarter deck sang along. One of my great new friends, Erik, who was steering at the helm looked down at me and said “these are the moments that just can’t be captured” and I couldn’t agree more.
I want to give a huge shout out to class C-275 who has made this voyage so special. I have been very fortunate to meet some incredible people along this journey. Each of them has such a wonderful and unique personality and I have cherished every moment getting to know them. We have only known each other for about 12 weeks, but I feel as if we’ve known each other for a lifetime. It’s hard to imagine what life is going be like without them. I’m really going to miss spending day after day with them. Strangers become classmates, classmates become friends, friends become shipmates, and shipmates become a family.
I have learned so much while being out at sea, not only academics, but life in general. The joy of life truly does come from new experiences. They can be a little frightening, intimidating, and make us feel uncomfortable, but that is how we grow. Every beautiful sunrise brings a new and different day; another chance to stretch outside of our comfort zone, try something new, and enjoy the amazing adventures of life.
P.S. To Mom, Dad, Lisa, family, friends, the Star Dance Company, and all my teachers, thank you for supporting me on this incredible adventure. It has been one of the greatest times of my life. I love you all and can’t wait to see you all soon! I have so many wonderful stories to share.