Today began for A Watch before the day even started! Half of our watch group stayed awake on Overnight Anchor Watch until 0100 this morning, completing hourly boat checks and half-hourly anchor checks. Cherry took a salt shower at 0130 after her watch in the morning. It is super refreshing. The boat was quiet for a better part of the morning, as 2/3 of our crew was awake through the night.
We on A Watch took advantage of our morning off-duty, with some napping through breakfast and opting for a later meal. Our watch assignment today was in the afternoon (1300 - 1900), and it was one of our first real watches as a full group. Half of us spent time on deck, with the other half in the lab.
With our first day moving fully by sail, the crew on deck had a fun time trimming sails, taking slack out of ropes, performing maintenance on said ropes and more! We learned how to use working and ballantine coils to keep the deck neat while we were keeping a steady course. During the sail to Provincetown, A Watch jibed and tacked, crew and students worked together to navigate and change the sails position. As soon as Cramer arrived, the crew lowered the sails and furled them, Solange, Avery and Cherry got to climb on the net on the front of the boat (the headrig) and help with furling. As winds picked up the sails needed trimming.
Then our imagination took hold and...(FICTIONAL ACCOUNTS):
Cherry got caught in a coil of rope and was sent to the top of the mast, she needed rescuing, unfortunately the wind was a force 9 on the Beaufort scale and she was lost to the elements. We found her a few miles later using a whale as a submarine like in Pinocchio, she's fine though (this is a joke no one was harmed). Meanwhile, Jai and his shipmate Colin took a stroll on deck to admire the full moon when a dolphin jumped out of the ocean. So inspired, both Jai and Colin lost interest in the moon and decided to jump into the ocean and chase their true passion to live in the sea. However, neither of them knew how to swim so the alarm went out for men overboard and all their shipmates had to wake up and rescue them. The end (this is also a joke!)
Within the lab, we processed marine organisms from C watches earlier deployment of the Neuston net, and found five small fish and over 100 comb jellyfish! In addition, we were also very excited to find a pteropod called an opistobranchia, (part of the gymnosomata family, meaning shell-less) under the microscope while doing our 100 count of organisms. We ended our lab watch processing two seawater samples in order to measure chlorophyll a concentration, which needed to be done without any lights in the lab so we were like vampires. WE also measured nutrient concentrations in the water.
LAB UPDATE: While doing hourly six minute reports I (Solange) saw a kittiwake bird that flew by the boat, alongside many other beautiful sea birds while doing the reports. The sky was primarily clear thought the day, giving use stellar ocean views. Side note: Solange and Avery saw a giant moth out on desk. Other insects like bees and flies called the ship their home for a little while as well, wanting to embrace the full SEA experience and learn all about how to properly run a ship.
Today was a blast full of new discovery and adventure, with so much to learn and see! Tonight, students were treated to a beautiful view of the full orange super moon over the water.