Location: Roseau, Dominica

The day started early to the sound of some New Orleans Jazz to motivate everyone to get up and be ready to leave Martinique. The anchor was lifted and sails raised, in arguably our quickest and most efficient time yet this semester. As we headed out past the tip of Martinique, the winds picked up, propelling us along at a steady 8.5 knots, driving Ocean Star towards our destination well ahead of schedule. We broke into our watch teams, with watch team 2 taking the first shift post breakfast and clean up.

A lot of the discussions on watch were about the nomenclature of the country we seek to arrive in, with some claiming it to be “Dom-E-knee-ka” and others arguing “Do-mini-ca”(Yes, as in the Dominican Republic). If we had completed our passage to the Dominican Republic, the week-long passage it would take has felt surprisingly swift and painless. Let’s hope our Spanish is as strong as we proved our French to be over the past few days.

The boys once again turned their hand to fishing. As you keen followers of The Adventures-Of-Ocean-Star will probably guess, they did not manage to obtain us a fish for dinner. But we are fully stocked with mounds of sargassum, which Kyle keeps reeling on board for us all to enjoy. Thanks for the salad?

The steady swell meant we were helming to surf along the passing waves to help keep us on course. Unfortunately for our chef team today, this was all while preparing lunch, even more unfortunately for them. As soon as they finished preparing lunch and it was brought up on deck, we had reached the leeward side of Dominica, meaning we entered the dead-calm flat waters of our destination. The wind and waves completely died off, providing a pond like the ocean as we drifted slowly towards our mooring. The only way to describe the stillness is to compare it to the scene of Master and Commander where they are sat in the Doldrums for weeks on end. Luckily for us, Ocean Star has an engine unlike the HMS Surprise, so we could turn on our engine and shift into gear to carry us the final leg of our passage.

Tina gave another stellar class on conflict resolution by first getting everyone to argue with one another (arguments provided by Tina) and then learning different ways to solve said arguments. As the class was finishing, a surprise fire drill was carried out, testing and reminding everyone of their roles during an emergency. Watch team 1 readied the crash pump while watch team 2 blocked the airflow to the raging fire in the chart house and made the required communications, which everyone knows how to do after the VHF exam the other week. As our imaginary fire grew out of control, we prepared to abandon ship by talking through the required procedures, as we wouldn’t want to accidentally launch one of our life-rafts.

This evening brought the next step of chart work with Carolyn in Seamanship class as we learned how to determine deviation through objects in transit.

As class draws to a close, everyone is heading off to bed to dream of/pray for the answers to the eagerly awaited Oceanography midterm tomorrow.