Location: Falmouth Harbour, Antigua

“Missing diver, missing diver, all hands on deck!” Everyone was woken by the distress call at 0645. Skin divers jumped into the water immediately to begin the preliminary search. Crew members utilized a variety of methods to rescue surface panic divers and to calm them down as scuba divers entered to retrieve our missing diver. Onboard Ocean Star members, successfully demonstrated the use of emergency oxygen, CPR, and AED. In twenty minutes, three panic divers had all been rescued and tranquilized (especially Steve, the emotional husband to our missing diver), and our missing unresponsive diver was found and resuscitated. We completed our second scenario, and all became certified rescue divers.

After our chocolate pancake breakfast, we were divided into two groups, with one taking some needed shore time with the others learning how to sail on smaller boats. We practiced tacking and jibing and cruising under different points of sail. Some even had a chance to get a one-on-one lesson with Calum in his tiny little “Zest” boat. The second group had their small boat sailing time after our short lunch break with hot dogs, and they were expected to have a fantastic time, just like the morning group. But maybe some of them had not been paying attention in the last 40 days and had some titanic struggle with sail handling resulting in a couple of capsized dinghies.

The toughest part of today was, of course, bidding farewell to our chief ensigneer, Dylan. Dilly Dilly, a true gentleman, and scholar was an integral part of the Ocean Star community. As he left today to head off to college and begin his journey as an NROTC midshipman at Arizona State University, we were all flooded with emotions. Dylan, we love you!

After both groups returned from dinghy sailing, we boarded Ocean Star once again and had some free time before a delicious pesto pasta dinner cooked by Graham, Meg, and Alice. We went through our daily squeeze question, cleaned up, and headed below deck for our final marine biology exams. First off, we had our fish ID quiz. Steve would flash a picture of a fish on the screen, and we had about 15 seconds to write its common name down before he went on to the next fish. It was remarkable to see how many fish we’ve learned to identify since the start of our trip. Then, we had our exam about the deep ocean and marine conservation. After we all finished up, we gave some high-fives in celebration as we are now officially done with academics aboard Ocean Star!

The group will continue their foreign language-themed movie night with the Chinese film Shadow.

Skipper Ni, out.