Location: Underway to Palau

I’m not really sure how to explain how today went. It was by far one of the most craziest days on passage so far. It started out like a normal day. My watch team and I had been up since 4 in the morning, and we got to see the sunrise, which was amazing. Then when we were relieved at 8:00, I went to bed. When I woke up, it was around 11, and we still had an hour before lunch, so I decided to go back up on deck. I grabbed my PFD and a bev and went to the cockpit, which is when then I knew today was going to be far from a normal day. Smash had a freshly cut bald head and had Dray and Margaret coloring it with paint to make it look like a turtle shell. We then all ate lunch, which were really good egg and meat and bean sandwiches. After Smash made us all go down below deck and handed us paint, we got all dressed up in our red, white, and blue attire and painted our red, white, and blue stripes on our bodies. Then we were all told to wear clothes that we wouldn’t mind getting ruined. As we sat below in anticipation as to what was to happen, we finally made our way up. We were greeted by Smash and Heather and were told that we were crossing the equator, and we had to do a sacred ceremony. We had to be reborn as Shellbacks, and our first step was to crawl through a mysterious hole that was covered in red sauce and saracha. Then two grown men dressed as babies wearing diapers threw oats at us and doused us in spicy milk from their bottles. Then Kee dumped water on us all, and that was the end of the first part. Next, it came time for us to entertain the court! Everybody had to get up and perform an act to entertain everybody, and if failed to, there were consequences. We had a little bit of everything from Ethan shaving his head to people putting fists in their mouths and trying to charade things and even people chugging water to songs until they threw up. Almost everybody had to get a punishment because the court, aka Tom in a bikini, and the rest of the mates were harsh judges. But Ethan passed for shaving his head, and I passed for performing some funny magic. But the punishments were the most entertaining part by far. People were made to drink this disgusting slop with hot sauce, and it was really funny. Then the absolute worst punishment was unleashed and was very humiliating to watch. The two adult babes grabbed two big British flags from below deck and brought them out. They then made a group of those who didn’t pass and forced them to hold the flags and gave them a piece of paper that had the cringy British anthem on it. After everything was over, we had to shower off and do a boat-wide cleaning. Dinner then rolled around, and we had these cauliflower wings and apple pie, which was all really good. We hadn’t quite crossed the equator but were super close. We all gathered around the wheel in the cockpit. As we all had a countdown, our coordinates slowly ticked down to all zeros and moved from South to North. We all celebrated, and it was like New Year’s, and we were blasting the horn, and that pretty much summed up all of today. Happy 4th of July!!!! – Jack