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Sea Education Association | SEA Currents

SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer



C252 Web Blog - 14 May 2014

Gracie Ballou, University of Vermont, Burlington

JWO of the day

Dockside in New York City
5.2 °C, windy and cloudy

Here were are docked in New York City, more than 1600 nautical miles away from our starting location in San Juan, Puerto Rico. I’’m sure the previous blogs have made it clear, but it has been an incredible journey through and through. Up until the very end my experience on Mama Cramer has been exceptional (thankful it’s not quite over).

This morning we motored into the Hudson bay with the New York City skyline on our horizon. Later on we slipped past the Statue of Liberty which gave me goose bumps while I was at the helm. It was difficult not to wonder how this view was different or very similar to the immigrants who followed the same route coming into the U.S. for their first time. Unphased by her presence, water taxis, ferries, barges and cargo ships zipped around us. It was an equally thrilling experience to be in such close proximity with them as well.

Towards the end of our voyage each shipmate had the opportunity to be a Junior Watch Officer or JWO. Which means running the watch for science or deck. This includes making sure all the boat checks, weather observations, six-minute observations, log notations, rotations and sail adjustments are completed. Extra responsibilities may include shooting sun or star lines with a sextant, marking down positions on the chart (aka dead reckonings), preparing for a triple stack tow and shouting commands for setting and striking sails. Here I have to make a shout out to Brandon, a fellow C watcher and JWO during our arrival in New York City! C watch had the deck from 0700-1300. While moving through the shipping lanes Brandon was responsible for making sure we stayed on course and keeping track of all the traffic around us. He had some help (of course the Captain and all three mates were standing on the quarterdeck) but he carried us through the bay to the dock!

After striking our final stay’ls and hauling on our final lines we came to a gentle stop along the pier. We had lunch with the whole crew (all 31 of us crammed into 17 seats-invading personal space isn’’t a problem when you’‘ve been at sea for a month with the same people). During downtime, some of us wandered onto land to make some phone calls back to the parental authorities, stakeholders (aka-parents) and other loved ones. After walking around on land and catching a brief glimpse of the city I think I’‘m ready to head back to the big ocean blue. New York City is quite a shock when you’’ve spent the best part of one month surrounded by the same people on a 134ft tall ship in the Sargasso Sea. Walking out on deck tonight I’m surprised by the amount of light still on the clouds. There are no stars on our horizon and no bioluminescence in the brown water.

Despite the end of our sea component, tomorrow in the city should be a lot of fun. We are spending the whole day at the aquarium with some free time on Cooney Island!


To Jill, Brittany, Sam, Gabs, Conner, Manuel, Kelly, Tori, Brandon, Mandy, Chelan, Allison, Luke, Victoria, Mika, Callie, Zack, Kiah, Laura, Alex, Andrew, Chrissy, Julie, Laura, Jennica, Will, Becks Lauren, Theo and last but definitely not least, Amy and Jason-you are truly incredible individuals who I feel extremely lucky to be able to work and share this journey with (you too Robbie, Solvin, Lars, Tony and Robert), thank you!

P.S. happy belated birthday katio, cannot wait to celebrate with you in person! Xoxox

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Marine Biodiversity & Conservation, • Topics: c252  port stops  new york city • (0) Comments
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