SEA Currents: polynesia.
Stanford@SEA: The Palmerston Community
For this blog post I want to share something I wrote about our time in Palmerston a few weeks back. Its bit delayed, just like the time it took to process what an incredible experience it was.
Church hymns still resonating in our minds, the rhythm pulsing through our veins, we made our way to the gazebo area where Mary Marsters and her family ate lunch together on Sunday after church. We sat in silence waiting for all members of the family to arrive.
Stanford@SEA: Arrival at the Kingdom of Tonga
After 7 days at sea (8 if you go by the calendar), we have reached The Kingdom of Tonga. The ship’s calendar shifted at midnight and, just like that, June 6th never happened on the Robert C. Seamans. However, as some other posts have touched on, time morphs into a bizarre animal when rotating through watches, weather conditions, and the ocean’s restless motion.
Stanford@SEA: Let’s Go Fishening
“You put your fingers in the gills like this and your thumb up on top. Then just rip the head off” John, the 18 year old Palmerstonian with a full, curly black beard, demonstrated the technique on a 12 inch long pink and silver parrot fish. Standing with waves breaking at our knees, Dylan, the engineer, and I tried and failed to repeat the process on two more parrot fish fish caught in the hand-woven net. Jon came over to show us again. We moved down the net repeating the process as we went.
Stanford@SEA: Perspectives of Palmerston Island
A special little moment from May 26th thrown in:
May 26th 2017, Time: 1730
Perspectives from aloft:
I started this blog after spending an afternoon looking at the ocean from a slightly different perspective than I’ve become accustomed to on board Mama Seamans.
Stanford@SEA: A Day on Palmerston
“Greetings to our guests and their families around the world. May Jesus bless them all.” Nano Marsters calls with a smile from the front right corner of the Palmerston church. She wears a flowing orange dress and a white laced hat adorned with colorful flowers, through the window behind her, palm trees sway in the wind. The audience in attendance, about half from our ship and half from the island, filled the eight pew church on this sunny Sunday morning.
Stanford@SEA: Welcome to Palmerston
Today I woke up for morning watch anticipating a call of “Land ho!!” at some point in the following six hours. After three days at sea, today was the day we were to make it to our next island stop, a small island and coral atoll with, last we had heard, around 60 inhabitants. Nearing land, anticipation on the ship was high, as crew members lined the starboard rails, watching two small, metal boats belonging to local residents help the Robert C. Seamans navigate the reef and find a place to drop anchor.
Stanford@SEA: The sun is sweet but the wind is sweeter
This morning on dawn watch, I left the lab to help set a sail and noticed a glowing light rise gently above the horizon, just off the starboard bow of the ship, in the northwest. I glanced at my watch, which read 04:15. The light was in the wrong direction and a bit early for sunrise, especially as we move into Southern Hemisphere autumn. It was land.
Where to begin? I have to quote our Captain Jay and say, “.and this is my life!” For over a month now, 32 of us have been sailing along the South Pacific, learning about our roles on board the Brigantine, how to help each other grow and standing up to the challenges and rewards that Nature has to offer. I would not want to be anywhere else.
S-272 Gets Their Land Legs Back
Our first full day on land included new cultural experiences, exploration, and a boat ride faster than 7 knots! This morning we were greeted by a group of local Raiateans who gathered at the base of our gangway and welcomed us all to their island. We were treated to traditional music and dance and even joined in with our less graceful interpretations. We then preformed some of our own shanties which turned into a tropical jam session all around. I learned that language barriers are nothing when faced with the power of song.
Arrival in Raiatea
After 32 days at sea, the 32 people aboard the SSV Robert C. Seamans have made it safely alongside the dock in Raiatea, French Polynesia. All are healthy and morale is high. Our arrival was slightly delayed this morning due to responding to a Mayday call from a grounded vessel on nearby Huahine. We were able to relay messages between the vessel, coincidentally named Argo, and the Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Tahiti and we made preparations to assist as needed. However, as we were approaching the island, authorities were able to reach the vessel and were we able to resume our sail track into Raiatea.