Location: English Harbour, Antigua

Hey guys, it’s Ethan here. To all the avid blog-readers who are probably wondering who the CLOWN is that managed to lose my wallet, mask, phone, and dive computer, I’d love to set the record straight. First off, the phone/wallet is really just a phone that stores my credit cards and ID in the case, so it’s not like I lost both my phone and wallet. It was only one item…and I’ll chalk that one down to a faulty zipper (The fish at the bottom of the Caribbean are really enjoying swiping through my Instagram!) The mask–totally my fault… I take full responsibility there. I came up from the dive with a mask on my face, and all of a sudden, it wasn’t on my face. My bad. Finally, the dive computer. I really only lost one bolt that broke off of the strap. It’s sitting comfortably in Steve’s safe along with my passport so that I can come back with at least two possessions! Mom and Dad, I promise I’m responsible 🙂

Now that we’re all on the same page let’s talk about today. After getting an extra hour of sleep (8 am wake-up baby), we enjoyed some delicious bagels prepared by our head chef Cat and Sous Chefs Ash and Sydnei. Even though we were still docked in English Harbour, we enjoyed a wonderful day. Marine Bio with Steve was wonderful as always. Learning about oceans and marine life while on an ocean and diving with marine life is still beyond amazing. We then stayed below deck and talked over some rescue diving scenarios. In a few days, we’ll be “surprised” with an emergency diving situation. Today’s discussion and planning put us in the perfect position to succeed and get our rescue diver certifications.

For lunch, Cat, Ash, and Sydnei prepared chicken fried rice. It’s safe to say there are no leftovers remaining. Afterward, Justin gathered us up for a truly special activity. We sat in a circle, all facing away from each other. Justin would read us a question (who inspires you, who makes you laugh, who will change the world, etc.), and one person in the middle would tap on the shoulders of the people who they believed to answer the question. It was amazing to see, especially because it was anonymous, how many people believe in us and think positively of each and every one of us. We shared some smiles after the activity and threw on our shoes and COVID masks because we got to shore.

We broke up into smaller walking groups onshore, but almost all of us ended up meeting at a local chandlery (as the store proclaimed, “The Caribbean’s best chandlery!”) called Budget Marine. Some bought shirts, some bought some line to practice their knot-tying, and some just looked around. On the walk back, Alex, Caleb, Nicole, and I came across a basketball court with a fully pumped basketball that was screaming for us to pick it up. So we did. Alex and I got a nice 1v1 pickup game in. After crossing Alex up, stepping back, and draining a game-winning three over his fallen body, I helped him up, and the four of us walked back to Ocean Star. **The story may be different if you ask Alex, but just by tiny details**

Meanwhile, Ian was pleading with a local supermarket cashier to let him climb a tree and grab some coconuts. He successfully plucked(?) four coconuts and brought them back to Ocean Star, where we shucked(?) them open and drank some refreshing coconut water. The gang over in the galley decided to keep riding the Asian-cuisine-inspired-chicken-dish train and prepared chicken teriyaki with broccoli and rice for dinner. Once again, it was enjoyed by all.

My squeeze question after dinner, “what would be your game-plan in a zombie apocalypse,” garnered some pretty interesting responses. Captain, Tom, and Nick were pretty set on staying in Ocean Star and sailing across the world. I see some issues in their ability to feed themselves. Still, a zombie apocalypse would most definitely lead to an abundance of fish in the ocean, so hopefully, they’ll be able to catch enough fish to survive. Sydnei and Hannah both admitted they pretty much had no chance but agreed that they would go to space together if they could find a spaceship. Ian gave an interesting answer which most people seemed to enjoy when they first heard. He wanted to bunker down in a Walmart. Unlimited food, weapons, shelter, and everything you could ever need to fight zombies…but I strongly believe going to Walmart during an apocalypse of any kind is a death sentence. Everybody is going to be there. It’s going to be mayhem, kinda like the cornucopia in The Hunger Games. I wanted to make my way to the top of a hill somewhere in the fertile crescent. I’d be on high ground with great visibility and have the ability to grow crops in sandy areas that seem barren. But of course, I would have major issues getting to the fertile crescent from Houston, Texas. Hopefully, I could hitch across the Atlantic ride with Steve, Tom, and Nick.

Now, we are headed to Seamanship class with Calum to hone our navigation skills through work on charts. Tomorrow, we sail to Barbuda.

Much love,