Location: Port St Charles, Barbados
After a long previous day of boat appreciation, all of us got a good night’s sleep in. Sweet dreams were abruptly interrupted this morning at 7 am when I banged two plates against each other for wake-ups. Head chef Shane was up early cooking breakfast sandwiches, and the smell of bacon seeped through the boat and into our cabins. Everyone headed up on deck, excited to eat some breakfast.
After morning cleanup, everyone gathered in the cockpit to get assigned jobs for docking. We were all ecstatic to finally be only a step away from land. This meant that we could use the marina restrooms and not have to pump the toilet to flush. This also meant that we would have little to no rocking. We could set objects like our water bottles on a table without them sliding onto the floor every two minutes. After being on long passages nearly back to back, the concept of docking became a luxury to all of us.
We all worked together efficiently in the docking process. Getting Argo into her spot was not easy, but we got the job done. For the first time since Cape Town, Argo was safe and snug in a dock!
Everyone was split into two groups for the rest of the day. One group of staff and students went diving while the other half got some free time to explore ashore. The dive group began prepping their gear asap. Some of us were nervous to dive for the first time, while others were too excited to think otherwise. Everything took time as people were getting a feel for all the new gear. The preparation and learning were rewarding when people began to take their first breaths underwater. These moments are ones that many of the divers will remember for a long time.
While half of us were being introduced to life underwater, the rest of us were introduced to life in Barbados. Most people took taxis to a town on the island called Bridgewater. A few others went a more adventurous route and did a tour of some really cool caves that you could swim inside of. On the way, our taxi driver pulled over to show us Rihanna’s house. We rolled down the windows and stuck our phones out to take pictures of the enormous mansion. Then our driver took us down Rihanna Lane, which was the street Rihanna grew up on. We pulled up to her childhood home. On the ground in front of the door was a plaque that said the singer’s name along with a Triton from the Barbados flag. Many of us bowed down and praised the ground that Rihanna had once walked upon.
Some of us went to a seafood restaurant in which we were able to hold a large living lobster. Others went to a beach restaurant called the Copa Cabana. Once we got enough food, cold refreshing drinks, and ice cream to satisfy our stomachs, we spent the rest of our time at the beach. The water was calm and crystal clear. You could stand in deep water, look down, and see every little detail on a fish swimming by. The water itself seemed to be the perfect temperature. I could have stayed there forever, relaxing in the sand and swimming in the water.
Both groups were reunited at dinner. We each spent time chatting to our fellow friends in the opposite group, telling them about what we experienced on this lovely day.