Location: Underway to Thailand

Today marks the first full-day rotation through our new watch teams. My new watch team, watch team two, was greeted with a clear sky full of stars as we emerged sleepily from the companionway. It wasn’t until this morning I realized how much I had missed seeing the stars while underway because as long as there aren’t clouds, you can see the milky-way, which never happens back at home. As the day continued, we fell back into watch routine of hourly boat checks and switching positions on the helm and bow watch. Personally, the 0400-0800 watch is my favorite because we get to see the stars for a couple of hours, then watch the sunrise, and we get to make breakfast once the generator is turned on. Today’s breakfast was especially good because we had the option between boatmeal or Kayli’s leftover chia seed pudding, and there is a wide assortment of newly stocked toppings. My final note about watch this morning is that we saw dolphins! There were two fairly big pods of small dolphins jumping far out of the water on either side of the boat, and half an hour later, a third pod swam by us. That is another thing on my list of unique Seamester experiences I will miss seeing on a regular basis.

After watch team three relieves us, many went back to bed, but I tested my sleep-deprived brain by trying to study for the NavMaster test that is tomorrow, but I couldn’t keep my eyes open, so I joined the others in sleep. When I woke up again, Argo was moving in actual sea-state. It’s been a rare occurrence up until now. The rest of the morning before lunch, the chefs were preparing spring roll bowls in the galley. The salon had a few people studying for NavMaster, writing the marine tourism essay for marine biology, or working on other assignments. With the program coming to an end, there are a lot of assignments needed to wrap up classes, so spare time is highly valued on the boat right now. After our delicious lunch made by head chef Justin and sous chefs Amanda C. and D, we gathered in the salon for marine biology class. Today’s lecture was on marine fishes; we made it through hagfish, lampreys, cartilage fish (sharks, skates, rays), and partway through bony fish. Between marine biology and a quick preparation lecture for NavMaster from Gabe, people squeezed in quick naps and snacks. Side note: there is still fresh fruit left from Bali, including passion fruit, and these passion fruits are the best I have ever had. I hope they don’t completely ruin my favorite fruit for me in the future. I am very appreciative of the study hall/free time we were given before showers to catch up on work.

Ever since 1000, the sea-state has remained rougher than ever before on our passages, so everyone has spent the day getting used to walking, eating, and showering in the swells and wind. I am so happy that we are finally sailing more than before; even though the motor is still on, we have three sails up, and there is a noticeable high side. It was entertaining for everybody in the cockpit during dinner to watch Preston and Ian having a blast on bow watch, getting splashed by waves as the bow crashed into the water. From it, we learned either to wear foulies on bow watch or fully embrace getting soaked as they did. For dinner, the chefs and bread-maker Matt made burgers and mashed potatoes and chickpea patties for the vegetarians. And everyone has a cookie cake to look forward to for watch snack tonight; it was planned by Justin and made mainly by Carly with help from Margo and myself. Overall I am stoked to be back underway and am looking forward to the remainder of the passage.

Current position: 6 29.5321’S 114 09.9463’E

1: Preston at the bow taking on the waves
2: Amanda C. and Justin are in the galley finishing up dinner
3: Ian, Preston, Gordon(behind Preston), Carolyn, Amanda C., Gabe, Carly, Kayli, and Amanda S. while switching from watch team two to watch team three