SEA Currents: new zealand
December 15, 2014
The surprisingly small town of Lyttleton has welcomed us with gorgeous weather and wonderful people. After a typical port morning - breakfast and cleaning - we headed out to Christchurch for the day’s activities. A short drive through beautiful green mountains brought us to the Ngai Tahu Government Office. Ngai Tahu is the largest Maori iwi (tribe) on the South Island, with over 53,000 registered members who can trace their whakapapa (lineage) back to an 1845 census.
December 10, 2014
Class S-256 Featured in Otago Daily Times
SEA Semester class S-256, The Global Ocean, was featured in the December 8 issue of the Otago Daily Times!
“A group of international research students are turning their eyes on Dunedin after setting sail for southern waters. The 23 undergraduate research students and 12 crew sailed into Otago Harbour aboard the SSV Robert C. Seamans yesterday.
The 134ft steel brigantine tall ship, operated by the United States-based Sea Education Association (Sea), was on its first visit to New Zealand waters….”
December 10, 2014
Hongis and Happiness
Wow, what a day! This morning we hopped on the bus and headed to the Karitane Marae, a place of community celebrations and worship for the local Maori tribe (iwi), the Ngai Tahu. We were first welcomed into an old school building for an introduction ceremony. The ceremony involved a leader of their iwi greeting us in the Maori language, and then the rest of the group joined him in singing us a song. Kane, a member of the local Maori
community who is friends with our Guest Faculty Jason Mancini, introduced our class to the iwi and we sang a sea shanty for them.
December 09, 2014
With New Friends Comes New Culture
As I sat around the breakfast table this morning, our second full day in Dunedin, I could see the exhaustion I felt on the faces of my shipmates. Port life is hard. We have all gotten used to our watch rotations at sea and sleep better when the ship sways beneath us. I speak only for myself when I say that being in port is equally fabulous and horrible. It provides us with the chance to visit amazing places, meet wonderful new people, and contact our loved ones back home.
December 08, 2014
Dunedin Doesn’t Disappoint
Today marks our first full day in the city of Dunedin! And what a day it has been. This is the furthest south I or SEA has ever been. Some fun facts about this city: it houses the first University established in NZ and had the first botanic garden in this country. Dunedin is a very different city from Wellington and Auckland. This city has strong Scottish roots in its demographic and sports blatant European-inspired themes throughout the parts of the city we have seen thus far.
December 07, 2014
Welcome to Dunedin!
Today we arrived in Dunedin after six days at sea and it is so beautiful ! A Watch was on deck as we first sighted land on the Mid Watch. Bow watch was incredible, it was a full moon and there was a beautiful reflection of the light on the water. The air was a bit cold but the Dusky dolphins surrounding us made up for it. In the morning, it was all hands on deck in order to help with field day and docking the boat. In addition to field day,
A Watch cleaned the reefer because of the mishap with the eggs.
November 29, 2014
You Can’t Beat a Good Day in Wellington
Locals joke “You can’t beat Wellington on a nice day!”
It’s truly a beautiful and fun place on such a day… you just rarely get a “nice day” in Wellington. Lucky for us, today was just such a day! On the agenda today for crew: prepare the ship for public viewing onboard in the afternoon; for students: work on the ever-present assignments, soak up some sun, and visit the national museum of New Zealand known as Te Papa.
November 28, 2014
Who knew laundry could be such good exercise?
Today began differently for the SEA student by the name of Kate Hruby. Instead of waking up, questioning the port agenda for the day, enjoying breakfast, cleaning the ship, and then heading to town like the rest of the students, she oh-so-bravely decided to take on not only the hose, bucket, and soap… but also the most feared nemesis of them all: dirty laundry.
Pre-breakfast, I waddled up on deck with the enemy at arm’s length. I made it through the first battles of socks and t-shirts with almost no problems, even stopping mid bacteria-wounding to wield the “ship, shipmate, self” mantra and do a deck wash.
November 27, 2014
Turkey Day in Kiwi Land
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.
November 26, 2014
How to Make a Ship Look Really, Really, Really Good
We mustered on the quarter deck at 0800 this morning to see Queen’s Wharf in the bright sunlight. People were milling around (and inexplicably commuting to work in full suits on scooters), looking at the boat with great interest. Feeling self-conscious, the crew of the Robert C. Seamans sprang into action for an extreme makeover like no other. The two more worn sails (the mains’l and the mainstays’l) were taken down to be repaired/replaced, and the other sails were furled tightly, with the seams folded into cascades of precise white waves. Our watch ventured aloft, climbing up the foremast to furl and tuck the squares’ls.