I’m On A Boat!

November 5, 2021

Allen Underwood, B Watch, Hamilton College

Taylor, Zuzanna, and Brier deploying the Secchi Disk

Taylor, Zuzanna, and Brier deploying the Secchi Disk

Ship's Log

Noon Position
22° 13.5’N x 058° 08.6’W

Ship Heading
210° PSC

Ship Speed
5.2 knots

Taffrail Log
2621 nm

Weather / Wind / Sail Plan
Clear and sunny, winds East by North, Beaufort Force 4, sailing under the four lowers.

Souls on Board

Remember remember! Too cliché for me to continue that bit even further. It’s November 5th, and today everyone has made sure I know the date with that funny limerick we can only remember four lines of. I regret to inform all the British parliamentarians reading this blog that unfortunately, Guy Fawkes celebrations were nonexistent on the SSV Corwith Cramer. No matter. We don’t need a zany holiday celebrating some Brit’s execution to allow us to have fun!

 Camilla, Allen (me) and Matt in the lab

Camilla, Allen (me) and Matt in the lab

Perhaps now is a better time than ever to address one of the stranger phenomenons that has popped up on our trip: the accented watches. Often for hours at a time, certain watch groups will speak primarily in a specific brand of accent. The genesis of this concept came in the form of the “British B-Watch.” On that fateful evening, the members of my very own B Watch decided to speak the Queen’s English for approximately four hours. We had some prim and proper Downton Abbey accents, more cosmopolitan Londoner accents, and even a comically exaggerated Ali-G /chav vernacular (my personal accent of choice.) An idea this great or strange couldn’t remain exclusive to one watch, however. The very next day, we overheard accented chatter from the “Australian A-Watch.” Shrimp on the barbie! Soon enough, we’d heard talk of Scottish Watches, plans for a Southern Watch… the possibilities for this brand of verbal amusement are truly endless. I am still gunning for a “Christopher Watch-en” where we all speak like Christopher Walken for a full six hours. Unlikely, but I’ve got my fingers crossed.

Today wasn’t really all that crazy, at least by Cramer standards. The weather has been getting much warmer as we veer closer to St. Croix. The tropical heat can be felt by everyone on board. It’s a sauna below decks, with fans constantly rotating, and dorade orientation a top priority for watchstanders doing boat checks. It’s so strange having summer extend into November; it’s almost as if we completely missed the fall season, given how warm September/early October was on shore. I’ve enjoyed the heat to some extent, though. The wind makes things fairly comfortable on deck, and a t-shirt/shorts is adequate attire for pretty much every day. Definitely makes planning outfits a lot easier!

Allen (me) jumping off the headrig.

Allen (me) jumping off the headrig.

Again, not a lot happened on November 5th. I was Junior Watch Officer (JWO) yesterday on Dawn Watch (1:00 AM – 7:00 AM,) which was awesome. I called a gybe, coordinated rotations for lookout, helm, and boat checks, oversaw sail trim; it was invigorating having so much responsibility over the ship’s functioning. I thoroughly enjoyed brainstorming ideas with my team about the best way to approach a problem, the best way to pass these sails, the best way to remove the boom preventer. If the JWO phase has taught me anything, it’s that a leader is only as good as the team they are leading.

Everyone on B watch brings their own expertise to the table, and with that knowledge involved in certain decision making processes, we are able to breeze through situations that at first glance seem complex and convoluted. I’m so glad my watchmates and I have the proper motivation and information to be able to pull off JWO successfully. As has been reiterated to us multiple times on this cruise, being able to lead a ship after spending a mere four weeks onboard is impossible anywhere other than SEA. My shipmates and I are very grateful for that privilege.

That’s pretty much everything. To my family back home, hope you’re all in good health and spirits. To my friends, hope you’re chillin’ back in the States. Can’t wait to see all of you again soon. Keep On Truckin’!

- Allen Underwood, B Watch, Hamilton College

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