SEA Currents: Robert C. Seamans
November 27, 2014
Turkey Day in Kiwi Land
41°17.1’S x 174°46.8’E
Partly cloudy and windy (Windy Wellington is living up to its name!)
Sail Plan & Course/Speed
Alongside Queens Wharf in Wellington
Happy Thanksgiving from the Robert C. Seamans!
Today was a very busy day for the students of S256. We started the day with breakfast on the ship. We had our normal ship cleaning responsibilities (heads, soles (floors), deck wash and galley cleaning) after breakfast. Shortly thereafter, we made our way to the Museum of Wellington City & Sea. There we met with two local historians. The first gave us a very interesting presentation on Maori migration to New Zealand. Maori are the indigenous people that first settled on the islands. We then had some time to explore the museum. (It was their 15th birthday today. They were handing out cupcakes. We were unfortunately at another presentation when this was happening.) This museum had some amazing info about the history of Wellington - especially local maritime history. After our time in the museum, we had a presentation from the other historian about the 1913 labor strike in Wellington. This was when all of the unionized laborers (about 14,000) in Wellington went on strike. We were able to see photos and stand in areas were many of these people stood 100 years before. We then traveled to the Waitangi Tribunal. This is a government entity that deals with entitlements of Maori tribal lands that were reclaimed. This group makes recommendations to Parliament about Maori land reclamation.
After our meeting at the Waitangi Tribunal we went to talk with representatives of the Ministry of Primary Industries, Biosecurity Surveillance and Response Divisions. These representatives work with biosecurity issues concerning marine vessels around New Zealand. They explained their processes for monitoring, assessing and remedying biofouling and ballast water intrusion of invasive species. I thought it was really interesting that they had a 1-800 number to call about any biosecurity risks. Students had many questions about the scope of the Ministry’s work, their presence across New Zealand, and the implications for Seamans. Some of the presenters came back and got a tour of the ship!
Upon return home, we enjoyed a classic Thanksgiving feast with turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, and many kinds of pie (pecan pumpkin, rhubarb berry, chocolate cream, apple!). We are so thankful for our steward Vickie who spearheaded the occasion. It was a meal of great conversation and great food. Everyone was enjoying the company and shared memories of family Thanksgiving traditions.
All of the students and crew wish their families and friends back home a very happy and healthy Thanksgiving. Everyone on the Robert C. Seamans is so appreciative of the experiences, views, opportunities, safety of everyone on board, and the future memories to come in the next few weeks. We are all very fortunate to be able to have this opportunity and we are thankful for everyone who made it happen.
Have a great Turkey Day!
PS. Mom, Dad, Rob, Sarah, Mabel and Mark - Miss you guys a whole bunch! I am doing well and have so many stories for you guys when I get back! See you in a few weeks! Much Love.