Happy Thanksgiving from the Robert C Seamans! As we sailed into the morning we knew it was going to be a great day given that for the very first time on our cruise the square sails, course and tops'l, were set! With the north winds at our backs these sails helped inch us closer and closer to our next port stop in Napier.The clear morning skies and cool breeze kick started everyone's high spirits for the festivities that awaited us.
Still in the deep ocean, the only objects in sight are dolphins that occasionally come to visit and the pyrosomes that we collected in our meter net tow last night.
Today B-Watch got off the hook as the Thanksgiving festivities conflicted with our afternoon watch (1300-1900). First on the agenda was class with Chris, Leadership in a Dynamic Environment, where some of us finished presenting on our climate leaders. A common thread between many of the leaders today was speaking out against monocultures in the agriculture industry. So for those at home celebrating today, we encourage to think about where the food on your plates comes from!
To maintain the American tradition of Thanksgiving football, we played boat-style, with a high stakes tournament of paper football. Chief Engineer Nate took home the gold with his refined flicking technique and double-backed paper football. Genius. Afterwards we were visited by a massive pod of small dolphins joyfully leaping about 200 meters off the stern.
After about a week's worth of preparation, our thanksgiving feast was bountiful: two beautiful turkeys, a hefty amount of mashed potatoes, green beans, stuffing, cranberry sauce, gravy and NINE pies (vegan and gluten free options included). Dressed in our best smelling attire, we sat on the quarter deck soaking in the golden sun, stomachs full, only getting up to get seconds, and maybe thirds. To make up for an afternoon off, B Watch provided the evening entertainment with a short play called "Amelia's First Thanksgiving." The story features a sea snail, lighthouse keeper, and deckhand that help Amelia discover the true meaning of Thanksgiving.
Here's a 'short' list of things that the members of S-289 are thankful for:
Duncan: "Weird mustaches."
Derek: "Normal mustaches" and marmots.
Amalia: "Support systems"
Capt'n Chris: "A safe journey"
Maia: Dobby (her dog)
Mollie: "My shipmates because I would go crazy without them!"
Amelia: "Patience of others"
Naomi: Bread loaf cat and her watch (wrist and otherwise)
June: "Opportunity to make connections with such wonderful people."
Dylan: The Treaty of Waitangi
Will: "The more butter the more better" and positivity
Others are grateful for: The ship that keeps us afloat, good weather, albatrosses, swim calls, seabirds, flownase, prometh, and Dramamine. New, slightly-new, and not-yet-stale friends. The support of our mentors. For things that glow, like the stars, bioluminescence, and dolphins swimming in bioluminescence.
I am also thankful for my wonderful family that is celebrating in Hillsboro today (sing a sea shanty in honor of me), and my friends spread out far and wide, love and miss you all!
Signing off in the big ocean,
Sarah Strand, B-Watch, Sewanee: University of the South