Location: Statia

Hello, everyone, and welcome to my last blog post about the trip. Most of us started off the morning before wake-ups to do some last-minute cramming for our oceanography test, aka our FINAL final exam. We had some pancakes for breakfast made by Allie K, Luc, and Drew. Then we took the test. The exam covered waves, tides, air-sea interactions, and much more. As of now, we are officially finished with our academic classes. Oceanography was an amazing class to take, and we were so lucky to have the opportunity to get first-hand experience with the material we covered. We all want to thank Heather so much for being an amazing, passionate, funny, kind, and patient teacher.

After the exam, we all got dressed and ready for a shore day in Statia! We got dropped off near the dive center we went to yesterday and split into two groups. The girls went to a dive shop with a bunch of adorable souvenirs, including lionfish jewelry! We got some earrings and rings made locally using parts of lionfish, an invasive species in the Caribbean. The dive shop had an amazing view of the water and the anchorage. We then took a scenic walk with gorgeous views, dogs, and some goats to a grocery store nearby called Duggins to stash up on some goodies for our passage back to Antigua. We all stocked up, but you can never have too much sugar, right? Then we went exploring through the upper town of Statia, passing through an old fort, an abandoned church, and some local artisan shops. After a few hours on our feet, we rested at a restaurant and met up with the boys. We got some fries and bubblegum ice cream, which was anonymously paid for by a kind stranger. We split ways with the boys again to head to a cafe where we enjoyed some mango and strawberry smoothies, croquettes, pasta, and WIFI. We spent a long time there enjoying the fresh air and amenities. We ended the shore time by going back to the dive shop and buying some souvenirs from the owners, Sarah and Dave (such nice people – if you are ever in Statia, be sure to say hi). We did a trash run and did some fun and fast dinghy rides (driven by Drew) back to O Mama.

Back on O Star, some of us enjoyed some chaotic and memorable free time before dinner while the chefs made dinner. We wrapped some gifts, ate some snacks, and watched part of Insurgent. Then Drew, Heather, and Megaladon came down to brief us on our student-led passage! We will be leading and navigating the boat to Antigua for our final voyage. The votes will be tomorrow at breakfast in a goblet of fire style, as Drew put it, in which you enter your own name. Stay tuned for who will be our Skipper, First Mate, and Navigator (in other words, who will be our Freddie, Drew, Heather, and Meghan). Heather then did an activity with us by reading a short story and introducing what we are calling Memory Cards. Each person will write a card to everyone on the boat about the memories we have made during the past 80ish days together. We are all looking forward to reading ours and keeping the amazing memories of our time here.

We ended the day with build your own fried rice bowls and the squeeze question, “If the person to your left were to be famous, what would they be famous for?” This aroused some fascinating answers, including building a house made out of mud, being the tallest person in the Netherlands, owning the biggest collection of tie-dye paraphernalia, winning a Nobel Peace prize, and sailing around the world while simultaneously being a stand-up comedian through a mini cam. During clean-up, we had a chaotic deckie/salty crew, and Drew ended up fashioning an adorable steel wool rabbit. Pro tip – all sailing vessels should be equipped with emergency googly eyes.

That’s all for day 72 on Ocean Star.

Signing off for good,