Location: Underway to Saba

Today is a great day, not only because we made our way from St Barths to Saba but because it is none other than the most wonderful Amanda Cole’s birthday. Who might Amanda Cole be, you ask? Some call her My Amanda, some call her Your Amanda, some Amandager, and some even grandma, but regardless of what she goes by, she is a fantastic human bean that is currently aboard Argo about to cross the Indian Ocean. In true Amanda fashion, we are actively doing face masks to celebrate.

Anywho, our day started this morning with Taylor Swift’s all-too-well 10-minute version because who wouldn’t want to wake up to that? Most were already awake, including Mia, who was the first person to start cooking and prepping for our Thanksgiving meal tomorrow. Some were still deep in sleep and, for some reason, still surprised by my face waking them up this morning. Not sure if it was because of the giant bun on the top of my head and not looking at myself or the fact that we, the staff, wake them up very rarely. But nonetheless, they ascended up on deck to the lovely smell of cherry chocolate chip bread and hash browns made by the A team of chefs led by head chef Sean, who was ready by 630 and got bored and started gophing up breakfast by himself at 640. After breakfast, we planned to depart St Barths to Saba, by our dear old Ocean Star had other plans, and the tensioner decided to depart the hydraulic plate. Never fear. Drew and Nick are here, and after a lovely impromptu Oceanography class with Heather about aquaculture, we were fixed up and on our merry way. We popped our sails up, and the harbor burned past all the mega yachts leaving the anchorage outside of Gustavia.

We began our lovely downwind sail with a delicious lunch of pesto pasta salad, with everyone’s favorite, pine nuts!!! Then we eased into some more sailing for the afternoon. As we neared Saba, we were consumed by a rainy and foggy squall, but that’s ok because Mia and Sean got to sound Ocean Star’s horn for fog signals! As we rounded the south side of Saba, the skies cleared, and we got a beautiful view of the steep, green sides of the island that almost looked like wolverine carved himself. Over the last few weeks, we have been trying as much as possible to step back and have the students lead everything going on up deck, and in that fashion, Nick turned into the wind, and the students took down the staysail, fore sail, and main sail all on their own. Very exciting stuff to watch after 65 days of learning, leading up to the much-anticipated student-led passage from Statia to Antigua. After a beautiful Saba sunset, we were treated to Sean, Kebo, and Drew’s final meal as a cheffing team; enchiladas with oreo cake dessert, definitely a crowd favorite. Now we get excited to dive into Saba tomorrow, and celebrate my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving. Crazy to say this is my last blog of the semester already. Time has flown by. See you all in the spring (:

Photo 1: Kebo and Bear working while underway
Photo 2: Saba in the distance
Photo 3: At least the squall brought a rainbow
Photo 4: A double rainbow at that!
Photo 5: Views coming into Saba
Photos 6-7: Everyone getting the sails down
Photo 8: Nick getting drenched by the rainwater collected in the main, Heather getting quite the laugh
Photo 9: Birthday face masks, Happy Birthday Amanda, we love you and miss you <3
Photo 10: Kate and KT snuggling with the boat flags
Photo 11: KT and Carli prepping Green Bean Casserole for Thanksgiving