Location: 2 14.65'N 43 31.96'W
We are, if not well, past, then far enough away from the equator that we are beginning to experience something we have yet to see this trip: the NE Trade Winds. This is a band of wind that circles the globe just north of the equator. In the Atlantic, these winds are the savior of sailors who, before engines were added, were at the mercy of the Doldrums: one of two belts around the global oceans typically devoid of wind, the other being the horse latitudes (such named, or so I’m told, for the desperate sailors who turned to eat their precious horses when food grew scarce after weeks of no wind). We are just now beginning to experience these magnificent, steady winds that will carry us all the way through the Caribbean. Speaking as someone with a bunk on the port side of the boat, our new starboard tack means I am no longer getting thrown out of my bunk with every roll. With the NE Trades come changing weather patterns. Squalls have been a regular occurrence with students debating if it really is worth it to run through three watertight doors to grab their foulies or whether they should just tough it out through a 10 min storm. We have new winds, new seas, new weather, and now, a new respect for the sailors of old who likely prayed for these winds far more than we ever have.