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Adventure on the High Seas

Oct 25, 2013


Location: Bequia to St. Vincent
Author: Ben
Daybreak came in the form of some old school Allman Brothers and some questionable weather. After a fun night out, the crew of Ocean Star was not expecting the type of day we were about to embark upon. The water was oddly rough in the morning for the few of us who decided to go diving for our research projects. Maybe it was a precursor for what was to come in the afternoon. The majority of the group enjoyed the last few hours in Bequia on land, and simultaneously, Bret, Will, Jake, James and myself decided to go research diving in the abnormally cooler water where we experienced an incredible amount of reef fish, sponges, and reef creatures. For lunch, we all took a trip to land and enjoyed a delicious meal at Maria’s Cafe, along with some unnaturally fast WIFI for our fix on the rest of the world. A few pictures and a dinghy ride later, we were raising the sails and sailing into the roughest seas we’ve seen yet. As Ocean Star traveled on a starboard tack towards Saint Vincent, we found it increasingly difficult to raise the anchor all the way due to the largest swells (some 6ft plus) we’ve seen yet. After a number of tries, we eventually tacked back towards Bequia to alter the angle of the ship and allow for an easier time raising the anchor, and sooner than later, we were on our way towards Saint Vincent without fault. Some swells crashed over the bow of Ocean Star, sending some of the crew sliding around into some unwanted places and uncomfortable positions. Though the waves were large, and the rain was sporadic, it was the wind that made the mood of the sail, almost like the soundtrack of a good movie. It howled and it whipped, sometimes so hard I lost my footing. But in the end, we made it to our destination. The trickiest part of the day came for BA (Boat Appreciation). According to the radar and weather services, there was more than just a minor storm hovering above our position, dumping rain and producing high winds with large swells. While some gave Ocean Star a much-needed taking care of, I was down below with Brooke, cooking a delicious spaghetti and turkey meatball dinner for the night. And for dessert, I made BROWNIES. However, our night wasn’t over quite yet. We had one last objective of the day: to watch the movie October Sky for SLD (Student Leadership Development). Jake Gyllenhall (Brokeback Mountain, Jarhead, The Day After Tomorrow) plays a high school teen trying to make something of himself by designing rockets in his coal mining community. The salon was filled with some fun chuckles, sly remarks towards bad acting, and a heartwarming cheer for the ending. As the night rolls round and into full swing, out comes the foul weather gear to help us survive anchor watch in this ridiculous storm. Hopefully the weather will pass so that we can hike the volcano in the morning.