SEA Currents: Robert C. Seamans
May 01, 2017
Arrival in Raiatea
Alongside the Dock, Raiatea, French Polynesia
3614.3 total nm from Lyttelton, NZ to Raiatea.
Sunny, Cumulus clouds, occasional tropical showers, 29.2°C
After 32 days at sea, the 32 people aboard the SSV Robert C. Seamans have made it safely alongside the dock in Raiatea, French Polynesia. All are healthy and morale is high. Our arrival was slightly delayed this morning due to responding to a Mayday call from a grounded vessel on nearby Huahine. We were able to relay messages between the vessel, coincidentally named Argo, and the Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Tahiti and we made preparations to assist as needed. However, as we were approaching the island, authorities were able to reach the vessel and were we able to resume our sail track into Raiatea. The professionalism and responsiveness shown by our crew, particularly our Captain Jay Amster and Chief Mate Scott Spillias deserves mention.
When we arrived alongside early this afternoon, many crew took the opportunity to step off the ship onto solid ground while handling dock lines and setting up the gangway. The smell of land is around us and some moss was passed around to breath in the rich earthy smell. For the first time in a month, the boat is still. There is no rocking, the tables are ungimbaled, and things can be placed down with the safe bet that they will stay where you put them. There are people, cars, roosters, bugs, and the color green. And yet, we are still whole. The ships company is now at the precipice of its next evolution as a community. As we bring the outside world back in, the depths of our community will deepen. To those reading this that have a personal connection with someone on board; I just have to say what a pleasure has been to sail with your person. You all have got some amazing people in your lives and I'm thankful to have been able to sail, learn, and laugh with them.
It is beautiful and quiet here. It's a holiday so I've heard most things are closed today. Personally, I have not stepped off the boat yet. Not really for any intentional purpose. I like the looks of this place and I want to explore, but I don't see the need to do it just yet. There will be time. We have had this afternoon as a buffer where people can for the most part just be. The major academic deadlines were last night so most of the ships company is having a quiet afternoon of just being here on this beautiful ship in this beautiful place. As I finishing writing this post, I was drawn out on deck by the sound of Polynesian drums which played throughout our dinner and continue still. Not a bad place to land.