Location: Les Saintes

We’re halfway through with our voyage, and time has been flying by. We’ve been through a lot already, but we still have tons of fun things to do before our time aboard Ocean Star is over. Today was a comparatively calm and relaxing day. As skipper, I had the highly enjoyable privilege of making sure the crew was promptly awake at 7:15, which usually means the foc’sle girls are made the subject of my entertainment in various loud and obnoxious ways. We started our first full day on this French island with an appropriate french toast breakfast. Delicious! Then, sitting on full stomachs, we had a class on geological oceanography and learned all sorts of fun things about marine topography and different types of undersea sediments. After class, we had a few hours of free time, a rare commodity aboard this constantly active ship. Most of us finished up our night diving knowledge reviews and cranked out some studying for our MTE midterm, and a few of us hopped in the water to do a little snorkeling. After lunch, we took the midterm and followed it with some designated research time, where we all broke into our teams and had our first opportunity to really get involved with the research projects we’ve been working hard to formulate and prepare for. For most of us, this meant a few hours of frustration as we attempted to accomplish our goals as a group with a limited supply of gear, but in the end, we all got a little innovative, and we’re able to make progress. Now we’ve just finished stuffing ourselves with dinner, and we’ll soon be ready to go on our first night dive. I think we’re all a little nervous about what the water below us will be like at night, but the moon is full (or nearly so) to guide us, and I’m sure we’ll all be more than grateful for the experience. I know personally, I’m looking forward to seeing how the reef has changed at night, and plan to return with yet another awesome story to bring home with me.