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SEA Currents Blog

SEA Currents: Corwith Cramer

October 31, 2021

Sour Tricks and Sweet Treats

Alec Duffy, A Watch, Walter M. Williams High School


Above: Robbie (Banana), Paige (Octopus), Brier (Sea Jester), Taylor (Ace Ventura), Aleea (Shark) and Becs (The Virgin Mary) enjoy their candy apples. Below: Kayla celebrates her absurdly fast victory in bobbing for apples, Bec consoles her close loss by eating her bobbed apple, and Aida watches joyously; Megan (Pirate), Paige (Octopus), and Camilla (Four-Leafed Clover) celebrate together; Anne (Jane Goodall), Taylor (Ace Ventura), and James (Captain) listen to Joey's (Spidahmin) tunes while Rocky and Captain Allison (Tourist in Tahiti) plot their sail maneuvering ambush.

Noon Position
28° 17.1’ N 051° 01.3’ W

Ship Heading
240° PSC

Ship Speed
5 kts

Taffrail Log
2039 nm

Weather / Wind / Sail Plan
Wind NWxN F4, Seas NWxN 5ft, starboard tack, under the 4 lowers with a shallow-reefed Mains’l and the JT.

Description of location
Subtropical Convergence Zone

Souls on board

On this all hallows eve, filled with sprites and frights, we revel in a night of sour tricks and sweet treats. Decorations of orange and black scatter themselves throughout our living spaces, a mark of our festivities. Everyone adorned their various costumes, creating a chaotic display of costumes ranging from between but not limited to: a shark, Ace Ventura, a banana, Jane Goodall, a pirate, Winnie the Pooh, Steve Irwin, Spidahmin, a four-leafed clover, the Virgin Mary, and a second shark. A few of us dressed up as and made light-hearted impressions of each other, including myself (Schelly lent me his sacred hat for it).

The galley had us bob for apples as snack, before finally revealing that our actual snack of caramel apples was on the other side of the deck. I would just like to note how terrifying it was watching my friend, Kayla, somehow bob three apples while blindfolded in literally less than ten seconds. Post-party, the crew had set up a shipwide trick or treating where we made our way from the fo'c'sle to the aft cabin, stopping for various candy delights along the way. As the sun set in the sky, we sat peacefully and gleefully- until First Mate Rocky ambushed us with the task of setting the dastardly tops'l and striking the jib tops'l. Alas it was a joyous night of celebration and comradery.

Tonight I'll leave you with a scary story, derived from my experience on the Cramer. Hope you enjoy!!

The ship is filled with constant noise, perhaps the denizens' chitter-chatter or the rain's pitter-patter or the ever-rumbling engine's eager growls. Adept hiders do their best to stay secret in silence, though it makes you wonder what can conceal itself in sound. Perhaps the chitter-chatter hides the rambles of some cursed speaker, or perhaps the pitter-patter blends the light steps of those small and unseen, or maybe the ceaseless engine growls cover the bellows of something bigger and angrier. I wonder if the hourly checks of the boat are truly for upkeep or if they're to keep the hidden in hiding. Though they often evade our purview, they sometimes dare pervade our glimpses and peripheries, taunting us with their existence.

Regardless of what lingers on the ship is the worry of what lurks beyond and below. The howling winds serve as yet another blockade of perception for whatever terrors lay claim to the skies. The churning seas allow us to ignore whatever tremendous ripples the sea's monstrosities leave in their wake. I fear that our deeper science deployments may disturb some slumbering creature which could not fester in the darkest of nightmares. What if something vast awaits our passing, poised to ambush our unknowing ship? Our noise, our constant and bloodcurdling noise. What happens when we bother something beyond or below our own conception of reality with our incessant noise?

Maybe we should direct our fear away from what remains unseen and unto ourselves. Who knows what sanity drains from our fellow shipmates as our journey dredges onwards. Perhaps that chitter-chatter or pitter-patter or those never-ending growls have etched their dreadful frequencies into the aberrant minds of the crew. We play a waiting game as the wind howls, the waves slosh, and the clock ticks and ticks in the endless coalescence of commotion, wondering who will be first to break or shatter the thin remaining barrier of sanity and sanctity. Perhaps the eccentric engineers, mad with knowledge of what lurks in the Cramer's confines and crannies; or maybe the strained stewards, who ironically find themselves baking in the heat of the boiling galley; even I find myself edging closer and closer to the precipice of the cliff that slowly rots in my mind amidst the perpetual buzzes of electric toothbrushes. I hope that soon we may step away from that cliff- and our electric toothbrushes- for I fear what will happen otherwise.

Have a Happy Halloween!!! ?
- Alec Duffy, A Watch

P.S. Happy Halloween Nanja!
P.P.S. Mom and Dad, there better be some candy left when I get back!! And I don't know how many cat photos you sent but it wasn't enough! Also I love you ?
P.P.P.S. To Danny, Shin, Hannah, and Lea, I miss you besties and I'll see you soon <3
P.P.P.P.S. Happy Birthday Paige's Grandmother!!
P.P.P.P.P.S. Hi Jordan's dad and Jenna's mom?

Categories: Corwith Cramer,Atlantic Odyssey,Ocean Exploration, • Topics: c300  life at sea  study abroad  science  sailing • (5) Comments
Previous entry: Colonies on Plastic    Next entry: S-301 Oceans & Climate


#1. Posted by Andrea Hunt on November 03, 2021

Wow, amazing writing. What fun to have a Halloween celebration.  What a fabulous adventure and chance to commune with all the souls aboard Corwith Cramer. A bond forever made! Blessings to you all! . Keep the tales coming!

#2. Posted by Smalley Terri on November 03, 2021

I love reading all of your blogs! It will be a Halloween that you will never forget for sure. There will be sights, sounds and smells that will be life long remembrances of your journey. Savor them all as they are a part of you now and no one can ever take them away.  They are now what makes you a select group that have experienced an adventure that many will never have the opportunity to know. I applaud your strength, courage and thirst to know more. May this adventure lead you to even greater things!

#3. Posted by Jordan's dad on November 03, 2021

Loved your description of the unknown.  But now I’m scared…  :>o

#4. Posted by Pamela Duffy on November 08, 2021

Alec, I knew you would end up writing the Halloween blog!  It always was your favorite holiday.  At least this year Hux can’t accuse you of costume idea theft.  We miss you terribly, and Dad remains very jealous of your high adventure on the seas.  Can’t wait to see you soon in St. Croix!  (The cats send their regrets, but are anxiously awaiting your return home).

#5. Posted by Nanja on November 11, 2021

I have made a few changes here so you won’t feel like a fish out of water(!) when you come to see me here in suburbia:
WiFi has been disconnected. A tape of howling winds and wildly flapping sails plays continuously. A dozen electric toothbrushes are buzzing away in the bathroom. A 20 foot long, 3 inch wide plank is propped up in the basement so that you can try to walk on it whenever you have a longing to feel wobbly on your legs again. And your bed will seem just as safe and secure as your berth on board…I found a child’s bunk bed at a Thrift Store…just big enough for you to squeeze into if you pull your knees up to your chin.
Best of all, Alec, there is a large shopping bag full of leftover Halloween candy waiting for you!



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