SEA Currents: Robert C. Seamans
October 26, 2017
Can’t Spell Competition Without C (watch)
23° 59.2’S x 176° 42.1’E
Ship’s Heading & Speed
180° PSC making 4.5 knots on a port tack
Force 4 Winds from ESE, 8/8 cloud cover and temperature at 23°C
Back in Woods Hole our captain, Jay, had told us that we will make a ton of mistakes which is encouraged, but the key is to not make the same one twice. Today was our 30th day on the ship and I’m still managing to make a million mistakes a day. Each watch holds a new challenge and with it a plethora of ways to screw it up. However today for C watch was a rather successful day. We all rolled out of bed just before noon after a very strange evening watch. It rained on and off throughout the night, we set and struck the tops’l A LOT, and birds kept crash landing on our deck. The night was eventful until we were relieved at 0100. Today our watch started at 1300 and it was the first full day of clouds that we’ve had at sea and was glorious in its own way. The cooler breeze stopped the sweating for a little while, but the cooler part was that every cloud type you could imagine was visible which made picking only a few for the logbook difficult.
Our afternoon class started at 1430 and after a few presentations we had a little sail handling competition. There were three timed events; one was setting, striking, anf furling the jib, the second was coiling and hanging all the lines on the starboard pin rail and the forefife rail, and the third was furling the mains’l. C Watch pulled off the win and then returned to our regular watch duties where I only made a handful of mistakes to add to my list of hopefully learned tasks. We were rewarded with a perfect sunset to the west and all of its carpuscular rays. Even though the rest of the horizon was surrounded by ominous dark squalls the contrast between the two skies was something that I don’t think you get to see anywhere else but the middle of the ocean. As the watch drew to a close we plotted a GPS point on the chart which is currently a blank white page with a grid layed over the top. There are no landmarks, buoys, or depths, just some lat and long lines. It’s these little reminders of how remote we are right now that make this experience even cooler. It often feels like we are at the center of a snow globe and the horizon around us is the edges, but when you can think of the bigger picture beyond a few swells and building clouds the magnitude of this final stretch to NZ is really incredible.
Our watch finished with another delicious dinner (thank you galley for being too good at what you do) and then C Watch had some downtime tonight before bed. We played apples to apples and drank newly discovered hot chocolate reserves until A watch needed some help setting the Mains’l. The morale was low with the light rains and sheer darkness but with some singing we pulled it off. Type 2 fun is what it’s all about. Another great day on the Seamans, another great day at sea, and another moment of low key panic that this will all be over way too soon.
Much love to the fam jam I miss you guys and can’t wait to see you soon!