Location: Offshore from Australia

Watch team one started the day off with the 4 AM to 8 AM watch. We crossed into Australian waters and sailed through the Great Barrier Reef into the lagoon. While sailing, off in the distance, we caught a glimpse of the dorsal fin of a humpback whale. We all made our best whale noises (Bryant taught us) to lure the humpbacks closer. It must have worked because Margret D. and Evan counted to three, and the whale breached in the distance. I’m convinced they have some sort of whale powers. Soon the whale was surfacing next to the boat, and we watched it follow us for 15 minutes.

We were hoping it would breach over the boat so we could high five it, but that didn’t happen. We had an oceanography class after lunch, where we learned about pollution. We watched a TED talk by Sylvia Earle, which if you haven’t seen, it’s worth a watch. The much anticipated Boat Prom/Middle School Dance was tonight, so all of the funny promposals were over. The decorations committee covered the lights in the salon with tissue paper and the walls in sarongs, which made it look like a groovy dance floor. Watch team three was the real hero of the night. They took turns doing boat checks and bow watches so that everyone else could keep tearing up the dance floor. By tearing up the dance floor, I mean falling every time we hit a swell. By 10:00, everyone was all danced out, and people hung out in the cockpit for a little bit before bed. People ate snacks that weren’t allowed in Australia (peanuts, opened gummies, fruit, popcorn) and had fun looking at the large boats off the shore of Mackay. The excitement ran through our veins as we watched Australia grow closer in the distance.