Location: Underway to Barbados

About two weeks ago, I was on bow watch with my fellow shipmate and friend, Helen L. ‘This is not what I expected sailing to be,’ I said as we both stared off into the calm blue Atlantic sea. Helen trying to speak over the motor, responded, ‘Yeah, I expected crazy waves and rain.’ We both looked at each other and back into the unruffled water with anticipation for some aggressive weather and unceasing excitement. I can confidently say that Poseidon heard our voices and summoned the sea and waves upon us because only within a couple of weeks, I was being shot out of my bed due to the vigorous waves. Last night’s watch verified it all as my team (Ben G., Katie B., Rob V., Eli S., Rachel B., Josh M., Marina K., and Bryant T.) was split up throughout the deck to monitor and adjust the sails due to the changing weather. ‘Someone grab the topping lift!’ Rachel quickly and confidently scurried to adjust the topping lift, but just as she reached for the line, our boat heeled about 45, and she swung like Tarzan and gracefully kerplunk onto the ground. ‘I give up!’ Rachel yelled. Even though she was so frustrated with balancing as the waves were coming over the cap rail, she finished her job diligently. Go, Rachel, go! I finished the last hour of watch at the bow with Katie. We both hollered as our stomachs were filled with butterflies, and our bodies were drenched with salty water. Exhausted and ready for bed, I came down below and walked into my room to find Sam B. sleeping in the strangest position. She had constructed a barrier on the side of her bed out of our personal bags and boat safety gear so that she wouldn’t fall out. I chuckled a bit to myself because I understood her struggle. The morning came quickly, and the sensational chef, Abby Cohen, served sesame noodles for lunch.

The day continued as our minds were enlightened in marine biology about arthropods and crustaceans. After receiving our EFR, VHF, Crew, and PADI certifications, I thought we would finally be finished with all these credentials but little did I know, we still had one last one left. Smudge and Bryant educated us with charts and navigational skills to prepare us for our last certification, Navigation Masters. As I mentioned before, Abby, a sensation, was also an inspiration, as she taught us how to interpret your body language. (Look up Amy Cuddy on Ted Talk if you want a little taste of what we learned). Abby continuing her phenomenal inspiration and sensational streak served us orange chicken and vegetables for dinner. However, before we ate, I couldn’t forget my squeeze question. As we all gathered around the cockpit and all held hands, I asked the group, ‘What is your version of how Chris and Britt met?’ This squeeze question had dwelled upon my mind since week one. I had been so eager to hear the truth about my leaders’ love story. Although I may have put some of my team in uncomfortable situations, whether it was due to the weather or strange questions, I personally can say that I have been satisfied and granted my wishes.