Location: Brazil - Fernando

Today we arrived early in Brazil before the sunrise and had a great morning swim before breakfast. It was a special day today as it was Sabrina’s Birthday!!! We woke up to an amazing view of green, tall trees, and surrounding islands with similar features. Everyone seems to have a sense of self-accomplishment since we have officially crossed the Atlantic, and everyone’s work has paid off. Moreover, as a group, we were very proud of each other. Today marked the last day of our first watch team groups, as we will be changing groups for our next passage. It is sad to move on from our watch groups as we spent more than 80 night hours together, but we will never forget the conversations, lessons, and bonds we will take away.

We started our day with some cereal and oats, which led us to our first activity of the day. The activity was the start of our Oceanography group research project. We got our groups and did our first project, which was to test the salinity levels using a refractometer, catching phytoplankton, testing the temperature of the water, and finding out the nitrate levels in the water. We had a great time doing it. While doing this, we were thinking of what we should do as our research topic for the remainder of our time on the boat. Many of us have found a topic that we would be interested in doing. We then ate lunch, which was squash risotto and spinach, which was tasty. We then moved on to the major activity that took the remainder of the day, which was boat appreciation. This means that we were giving back to the boat for getting us through our journey by cleaning it up back to its prime. This included scrubbing the dirt that had gotten stuck within the grated surfaces we walk on, scrubbing the saloon, cleaning the heads to perfection, scrubbing the outside of the boat so it shines against the sun as we sail, putting together the other dinghy, and wiping our bunks down. It was quite the effort that we all put in, but at the end of the day, it was well-needed, and felt great afterward. We then jumped in the water one last time before getting ready for dinner. For dinner, we had a chicken stir-fry which was great, and Katie and MG made Sabrina a birthday cake. We ended our day thinking about the exciting time we were going to have tomorrow on land and learning what we had in store for the remainder of our stay here. We all are excited about what is to follow!