Location: Charlestown, Nevis

The sails were risen with the sun setting behind our back as we headed southwest for Nevis. We were quickly met with harsh sees as we left the protection of the Virgin Islands. We were told it would be rough, but everyone had smiles nonetheless. Smiles slowly faded as the reality of this passage was met while the moon rose on our bow.

The other crew members and I slowly faded away below deck as the first watch team took over to helm Ocean Star through the night. Below deck was a painful place to be, as most of us found out. Things were thrown about, including me, with no way of knowing which direction the boat would move next. I had six hours until my watch, and I knew I had to attempt to get some sleep. This was difficult until I finally surrendered to the fact that this was the state of being for the next day or so.

My 2:00 am watch came sooner than expected and was a very surreal experience. I sat with my watch team in silence with the nearly full moon behind us and no land anywhere in sight. All we could hear was the sound of wind batting the sails and waves crashing into the bow, pushing us backward. This was a place I never imagined being, yet there I was. Our watch ended at 5:00 as the moon set behind us.

The next morning as I rose from below deck, I was greeted with a whole seasick watch team passed out on the chart house with one man left standing on the helm with a smile as Ocean Star crashed through 3-meter swells. We could see Saint Kitts in the distance, which meant we were close, but the next 10 hours remained rough as the islands came ever so slowly closer to us. The approach to Nevis was incredibly satisfying as the volcano, which looked so small half a day earlier, turned about to be a giant towering out of the sea.

The afternoon was spent working with everybody as a team to remove the vast amount of salt that sat in every corner of our vessel. A job well done by all on this harsh offshore passage.