Location: Denarau, Fiji

A few of the early risers and I plotted the best wake-up playlist for this beautiful morning at our anchorage outside of Port Denarau. Strictly at 7 am, we began with Good Morning by Kanye West blasting through the bunks. Slowly, heads began to pop out of the doorways with curious looks as to who the skipper was. Next, we queued up SICKO MODE by Travis Scott and followed up with a song by Skrillex. For the remainder of wake-ups, we rotated through hard-core heavy metal-esque music and classical. Eventually, by 7:20 am, the music was off, and the crew was up! We had a lovely breakfast of flapjacks from Elle. Quickly after clean up, we took up anchor and began our arrival into Port Denarau. We all PFDd up and made our way on deck to find Will at the helm bringing us into Port! He did an incredible job bringing our 112ft Argo onto the docks. Standing on the docks was no one other than our Fiji dad Geoff 🙂 He is a very pleasant sight to see upon arrival. (I think that goes both ways, but I cant speak for Geoff). Once the lines were made, we began part one of three marine biology lectures. The initial lecture was interrupted by our COVID tests. The second lecture was interrupted by lunch. Finally, we were able to finish our last lecture by 3 pm. While receiving our COVID tests, we all eagerly awaited everyone to walk out and rate the watery eyes. Many describe it as only a medium amount of poke or it feels like getting A LOT of water up to your nose. Eventually, we made our way back to Argo and had a bit of free time while we had some visitors fix the fridge situation. By the time lunch rolled around, we (I) were all getting a bit hangry and eager for Elles yummy smelling mac and cheese. As we were all shoving our faces with noodles and cheese, Tim briskly walked/ran up the companionway to the cockpit and casually said, Hey, we just got accepted by the marina and ministry of health in Palau. The five closest people shot their heads around and said, EXCUSE ME? REPEAT. By that time, everyone had an idea of what he said but needed to hear the words in full context. So we motivated Tim to put a bit more enthusiasm behind the announcement, and he said exactly the same thing with just a little more POW and a lot more smiles! The mood of the crew increased immensely that afternoon. We are all so fortunate and appreciative of our crew. They have worked incredibly hard the past few weeks juggling us, Palau agents, and all while helping us complete our rescue diver training. The remainder of the afternoon was spent doing BA!! We completely bleached Argo from the inside out. She hasnt smelled this good since day one. We all enjoyed picking out our new sheets and organizing our bunks for the third time, and still managing to discover new arrangements that are better than the last. As dinner time rolled around, many of us walked up the companionway to a rave with Lolo, Annie, Chloe, Ian, and Cole. Letting go of absolutely everything they had in them. It was quite the sight! We ended dinner with our usual squeeze, and tonight I asked, After Seamester, what will be the first thing you do when you get home? Many answers surrounded food, dogs, showers, toilets, and airport arrivals. I think many of us have been daydreaming about our arrival home and the things we will find so much pleasure in, yet again. Following clean-up and down-below Hibiclens showers, we mustered on the chart house roof for a black-and-white card night. The staff set up hanging lights on the boom, and we sat in a circle while Tim explained the prompt. He scattered many black and white postcard pictures and told us the tradition that every semester does at some point in the trip. We were prompted to choose one picture that illustrated a characteristic that we hope to hold on to in our lives and a second picture that displays a characteristic that we dislike about ourselves. We popcorned around the circle until everyone had gone. It was a great way for us as a crew to understand each other on a more intimate level. I liked the way Tim described it as giving people a voice to display themselves and give people a chance to get to know each other. We all hope to get to do another black-and-white card night soon! Today was the start to a great next couple of days 🙂

P.S. Hi, mom and dad! I miss you guys! Ill call before we depart for Palau. Love you 🙂