Location: UW to Gibraltar
The first win of the day was me remembering I was skipper and actually waking everyone up on time! We were greeted with some beautiful crepes – and you may think there’s no way someone could successfully make crepes for 33 people by 7:30 am. They must turn out like lumpy pancakes. I certainly was. But no! They were actually crepes! It was incredible. Shout out to Amelia and her team. Then we had quite the morning, where everyone (hopefully) got to use their brains a lot. Half the group worked on nav master (they’re currently navigating us to Gibraltar using only their hand and the stars, similar to what you may have seen in the BBC documentary “Moana”), and others did their EFR (Emergency First Responder) exam (basically doctors now), and still, others took their ColRegs exam (Collision Regulations – they know how to actively avoid a collision, from boats, icebergs, you name it).
Meanwhile, Rachel started passage prep. She’s a real hero, just quietly taking off the sail covers all by herself while everyone else finishes those other tasks. After some time, she was joined by her peers, and voil, the boat was prepped!
For lunch, we had a delicious Thai meal, followed by a marine bio class. I personally then went and got some glup (the Spanish word for frozen yogurt), and then we were off. Quite literally. We were getting ready to go, and then the people on the dock just undid our lines, and we were off, ready or not (we were ready).
Pretty much as soon as we got underway, we started the dolphin-watching section of our tour – we saw dolphins (or pilot whales), I believe, two or three separate times today. At one point, we even saw three different groups of cetaceans all meet up – some interpreted it as a standoff. Others, as a family reunion. Still others (Rachel), as diligent little divers that lost their buddies searched for one minute and then met back up at the surface. Either way, it was incredible and magical and beautiful. The water is so still and calm, perfect for creature spotting (and taking relevant data – team dolphin/whale is doing a research project about how often we see whales/dolphins. They’re still hashing out the details. The weather is a component- today’s was “nice”).
For dinner, we had another gas meal (gang approved) and followed up with a squeeze about what we are all proud of. Personally, I’m proud of all the shipmates here. This is a crazy wild adventure, but it also comes with its challenges. Yet every day, this crew rises up, puts on a smile, and keeps going. And the result is an incredible, unforgettable, growth and learning-filled, insane experience. And there’s still so much more to come! If you’re a parent or you know someone on this trip, you should be proud of them. They’re doing big things.
P.S. Almerimar is a set for the Spanish equivalent of Hollywood (Spollywood?), and it has become clear to us all that this is a simulation. The fish are actually humans trapped in fish bodies that breathe air and can clearly tell when we are talking about them.
That’s all for now!