SEA Currents: SEASCape
July 06, 2017
Special Thanks to Ben Harden
We started the day with English muffins filled with cheese, ham, and eggs, and immediately got to work on our chores. After cleaning, we grouped into our watches and learned the square (or reef) knot, as well as the slip knot equivalent. When we had all mastered the new knot, we headed up to the Madden center for our Oceanography lesson.
The lesson for today was on Physical Oceanography, the way that physics ties into currents and tides. The class was taught by guest physicist Ben Harden, who began by explaining key principles and phenomena relevant to physical oceanography. He led us through experiments involving waters of different salinity (dyed different colors) being mixed. He continued by performing an experiment on hot and cold water, and how the fresh water from melting ice can disrupt the processes that would happen otherwise. He discussed how much global warming (boo!) was disrupting the Gulf Stream, and how humanity's effects on the climate would have dramatic effects on the oceans, and the globe, as we know it. After his class we examined text from Moby Dick with Kate in our O&S class, taking apart the text to look at it on a different level. We learned the history of whaling and how the industry took a huge toll on some of the world's largest and most fascinating creatures.
Following a delicious lunch of BLTs prepared by our amazing steward Sabrina, we took a field trip to Woods Hole and Aquarium, where we saw some amazing exhibits, including an underwater craft that had monitored (and been attacked by) sharks, a to-scale replica of submersible Alvin, and a myriad of aquatic organisms. Highlights included a triggerfish that followed Alex's every whim and command, a blind seal named Bumper, and lots of other fun sea creatures.
Dinner followed that, an amazing dinner of chili and cornbread. We ended the night with Captains Courageous, an older movie that gave a glimpse into life aboard a fishing boat. After a brief study hall, we all headed to bed, tired but nonetheless excited for the remainder of our time here at SEA.
- Tobias and Alex