Location: Cocoa Point, Barbuda

The morning began with Pop Smoke’s “The Woo.” I played this song strictly for Chief’s enjoyment (ft. pic 1) but wasn’t surprised when it failed to stir him from what had been a long night of sleep scream-laughing for him. Breakfast was delicious, as has come to be expected of Kiara at this point with her flawless record of amazing meals. We had french toast roll-ups covered in cinnamon sugar that had everyone asking what her recipe was and how to make them. As soon as cleanup had concluded, the third and final group for Nav Master got ready to sit down for the lengthy exam. The ship was eerily quiet for the 3+ hours that the exam took place, giving the rest of the shipmates some time to work on our oceanography papers and presentations or to wrap up with our leadership papers due tomorrow. Most of us just went to sleep, though, and will stress about all the work later. Nav Master ran into lunch, so we had a quiet on deck gathering for loaded baked potatoes, which were quickly devoured. Shortly after we began lunch, our test takers began turning in their charts one by one until the last exam (hopefully) was tucked away in the chart house. Although several people had only just finished enduring what may be the longest exam ever, there was a very short turnaround between our next event. The Ocean Star Olympics, hosted by Ben for his leadership class, were to commence after only about 5-10 minutes of being briefed on teams and planning out what to do. (team 1: Pearse, Mike, Isabel, Zoe, Sophie / team 2: Will, Margeaux, Jodie, Riley, Isa / team 3: Luke, Xonel, Jukuma, Kiara) Teams frantically brainstormed and assigned members to compete in each event, including, in order, a swim relay, raising the courtesy flag, life ring toss, lighting the oven (you’d be surprised how much of an impossible task this can be on the boat, yea it sounds kinda pathetic but this thing is no joke), setting up dive kits, knot tying, and finally, topping the fore boom. All team members participated in the first and last events, but everything in between was a one-person task. We all hopped in the water for the relay, were given a 30-second courtesy break for pee time, and then the “gun” sounded, which was just Ben blasting Black Skinhead by Kanye over his speaker. Team 3 took the first event, and we moved onto raising the courtesy flag. This event took much longer than the last, mainly because we could only go one at a time. Zoe went first, followed by Isa, and then me. Times showed a decisive victory for team three. Third was the life ring toss, featuring Pearse, Jodie, and Lenox. It took Pearse about ten minutes to land the ring around the dive flag, but he finally got it. To be fair, he did have to navigate around Steve’s clothesline since he was avid about not taking it down. The other two participants completed the task in around 40 seconds, Lenox taking the victory once again for team 3. Lighting the oven was next, maybe one of the most feared events on the boat, strictly due to the oven’s notorious habit of being an absolute pain in the ass. Mike, Will, and I faced off for the title of oven master, and I ended up walking away with another W for team 3. Following the oven, the challenge was setting up the dive tanks. Kiara, Riley, and Isabel were candidates for this event, featuring our dive instructors Ash and Adelaide as judges. Speed was key, but points were taken off if safety was sacrificed in the process. Kiara ended up walking away, making it look like team 3 would have a clean sweep. The final solo event was the knot tying. With the spotlight on Julia to take a clean sweep, Sophie and Margeaux were charged with doing all they could to stop what has become known as the impossible force of the right bicep. Against all odds and unnervingly large muscles, Margeaux managed to tie Julia’s time, ruining team 3’s perfect record. The last challenge was topping the fore boom. When the boom usually goes up, there are quite a few hands on deck, so Ben decided that teams could recruit extra hands for the task, unless you were team 3, just to give them a handicap. In the end, it didn’t matter. Team 3 once again walked away with a victory, despite being short on hands. It was the AC/DC music that gave us the extra strength. After this was all said and done, people were ready for some much-needed rest/relaxation time. Some did laundry, others free dove with the remora, but most of the crew watched a movie down below. Although the movie didn’t end until well after 1800, this didn’t stop Steve from doing his own count off and eating dinner with the company of only Zoe. Now, after another long day aboard Ocean Star, the crew prepares for another night dive, hoping to see another octopus or some turtles, maybe even a shark or two if they’re lucky. Guess you’ll all have to find out what cool things they see in tomorrow’s blog. Or maybe not; who knows what Calum is going to write about. Nonetheless, this has been quite a long rant, but fret not; this is the last one you’ll hear from me. It’s sad to think about how fast this trip has gone by so far and that there are only a couple of days left before our crew starts to thin out. Its been a pleasure spending all of this time aboard Ocean Star with you all; if anyone from Ocean Star Fall 2020 comes back to read these someday, just know that you are loved very much. Thank you all for the great experiences!

1-Dazed and confused
2-Nav Master exam
3-Pre-Olympics chaos
4-event 1
5-event 2
6-9-Pearse’s attempts at the ring toss Ft. Steves clothes
10-event 4
11-event 5
12-13-event 6
14-If you look closely, you can see the long, crusty eye boogie on Lenox’s upper left cheek
15-DMTs on their Hell Dive
16-Baby Chief taking a nap in his cocoon (sorry bro)