Location: West End, Tortola, BVI
Our day began with a small taste of the stormy weather we might encounter on the journey ahead. Many of us donned our foul weather gear for the first time, pulling on our rain jackets and bibs (rain paints) to keep dry from the rain. After a slightly soggy breakfast, we gathered below deck to begin our Seamanship course. One of the crew, Dan, explained how the course would work before bringing us above deck to learn a wealth of new boat vocabulary. Words like “Binnacle” “Bulwark” and “Plinth” were tossed our way as we admired the complex, elegant craftsmanship keeping Argo sailing smoothly.
After class, we walked to a small convenience store to purchase snacks, drinks and other amenities for the long sail across the Atlantic. You heard it right – our Argo will be leaving with her crew tomorrow for the big ocean blue! The trip will take a little over two weeks, after which we will land in the Azores. The biggest part of today was preparing for life underway. We learned about safety procedures, protocol, and were assigned to our watch teams for the following weeks. Crossing the Atlantic means adapting to a lot of new habits: balancing these watch shifts, daily boat duties and seamanship studies all at once. After our last refreshing dip in the ocean until the Azores, we sat down for a delicious dinner of lentils, tikka masala chicken, rice, and veggies. At the end of dinner, we discussed what our biggest challenges would be crossing the ocean and how we would overcome them. Though all of us newcomers are a bit nervous, we’re equally excited to get this ship moving. Here’s to a wonderful, exciting adventure aboard Argo!