As a steward my work environment is entirely below deck, so it can be easy to forget to move around to other parts of the boat. At the start of this trip I wrote down a bunch of new things I wanted to try and places I wanted to hang out more, a.k.a. my ‘boat-ket list’. The top two things on my boat-ket list were hanging out on the headrig while underway and sweating the mainstays’l or forstays’l sheet. I am happy to report that both of those were accomplished, and without any typical procrastination! I went out on the headrig with Ruthann one morning and it was such an incredible sight! When you’re out there you’re right on the bow, so you can feel the vertical movement of the boat pretty dramatically. It was so exhilarating feeling the bow lift up high over the waves, only to then inevitably drop back down (occasionally getting a nice sea spray)! The headrig is a large net, so we could easily see all of the water rushing by underneath us. I laid down on my stomach for a bit to watch the water splashing by us and up against the hull of the ship. When I looked up, it was an equally exciting sight because there was nothing to see as far as the naked eye could go except deep, deep blue sea. An all-around incredibly breathtaking experience!
Sweating the mainstays’l sheet probably doesn’t sound as exciting as hanging out on the headrig, but it’s genuinely super fun! To sweat this line you have to literally climb up it with the tippity tops of your toes barely on the deck before you drop into a quick deep squat and then bring the line to the pin. A shipmate described it as climbing the line ‘Tarzan style’. I always thought it looked so unbelievably fun and boy did it live up to my expectations! (Just remember to hold onto the line until someone say 2, 6 and you all release together, so someone doesn’t go flying!) Along with checking off my top two boat-ket list items I’ve also been able to attend a lot of late night jam sessions on the quarter deck. It’s so beautiful listening to people singing, strumming guitar, and playing a melodica underneath the night sky. I love hearing the songs that get played pretty regularly, like Wagon Wheel and Jet Plane, just as much as whenever a new song gets played, my favorite recent one was Edelweiss. There’s something magical about gathering around the deck with your shipmates listening to music under the moonlight. A lot of people sit nearby with the intention of just listening, but it’s so fun when everyone starts humming and singing along when just the right song is chosen. It creates a beautiful community/ family atmosphere surrounding the whole experience. On my first SEA sail I was commonly known for singing show tunes in the galley (or shrieking show tunes, depending on your definition) at all hours of the day. I think dialing back on the 4 AM renditions of “Galley, the Musical” and joining in on more group music sessions has been to the pleasure of all the ship’s company! One of the most incredible things about sailing around the ocean on this ship is how many new things there always are to do! Encouraging myself to branch out of the depths of the galley and going up on deck for some music jams, headrig hangout times, or sweating some lines has been so important in making this trip as incredible as it has been! Happy Birthday Aaron, hope it was a great day! And happy birthday to shipmate Ana!! [Tobi Buchman, Co-Steward]