Evening Underway

December 16, 2023

Author: Zeke Reilly, Grinnell College


Ship's Log

16 December 2023Current Position: 35'15.24' S x 176'14.9' EShip's Heading & Speed: 4.5 kts, 230 HDGWeather: Wind 10 kts, sunny

The endless motion of life aboard a ship underway is wearisome. At night, Icrave stillness in my bunk that never comes. Instead, I spend restless hourssliding from the head of my small rubber pad to its foot, from the port tothe starboard side, and upon my chest the whole time an unnatural gravityacts. Navigating the halls as they shift with the rolling and swell is anearly psychedelic experience, and at meals the table refuses to cooperatelifting plates up and down, threating to send all its contents onto thesoles. Allowing the unending movement to trespass into the dominion of humoris the only way to proceed in such a place. And so, I have shared manylaughs with my shipmates and formed transient but deep connections.Today highlighted those connections. The morning passed quickly like most dowhen you have watch in the afternoon and began with a workout on deck forthose who were keen. Lunch and then watch. At 1400 all hands muster forfield day (a once a week deep clean of the ship). Scrubbing, mopping,shining, sweeping, and many other manner of cleaning followed. Once the shipwas thoroughly cleaned, the fire hose was set up on deck and everyone hadthe opportunity to do some deep cleaning of their own. The afternoon passedquietly, and many people enjoyed the first sun we've had in days. Afterdinner, the deck was alive with activity. A hand full of people went aloft,others grouped on the quarterdeck or went out on the bowsprit, and of coursesome reported for watch. As the sun set two dolphins swam around the bow andthe clouds luminesced pink and orange. In each other's company, we allenjoyed the wide-open horizon and hard-earned free time. We shared storiesand laughed, and in all that motion we found peace and life seemed to slow.Zeke ReillyGrinnell CollegeC Watch

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