Happy Halloween to those of you ashore! Am I confused? Could be, but not about this! It’s ‘Local Apparent’ Halloween here on the Corwith Cramer thanks to one of the many oddities of boat life - the passage of time. Dates feel arbitrary, days meld into weeks, you sleep at any and all available times of day, and you lose track of the number of sunrises and sunsets you see; all of this creates a beautiful time warp that we are trapped in, together! While it can feel disorienting and strange, this also presents a unique opportunity to make the day any day you want. So, today has been Halloween.
We had costumes pulled from the costume bunk and just flat out creativity to fuel us. There was ample candy and lots of giggles. Some dreams came true and some did not, but Andre got to dress up as a giant dinosaur so that was a win for all. The only thing missing is the Halloween songs. Believe it or not, the Monster Mash is not a popular download. But alas! Halloween has been a success and a grand old time.
Today was also our first day with Junior Watch Officers in charge! It’s been really exciting and fun to see the students gain confidence in being here on the boat, in the SEA community, and sailing. I was talking to Caroline the other day about what we like most about being on the boat; we talked about how it’s a unique situation where we only have each other, with no other outside communication or people to rely on.
It makes the experience and the people feel pretty special. It also means that we look out for each other, especially since there are the common goals of sailing, learning, and science. We need to communicate well and work together to get the job done which means that if one of us succeeds, we all succeed. I’m new to SEA and I’m new to the sailing world in general but that is something that struck me early on in my contract. Everyone who is here is here to help you do your best and really wants you to do well. It’s a community that is as well-oiled as the ship that we work on.
Dinosaur Andre, at the helm
I went on deck this morning before my afternoon watch and saw Anna taking charge. She struck the JT and the Jib and gybed for science with some guidance from her peers and very little guidance from pro-crew. Each of the students will be participating as a Junior Watch Officer on deck and a Junior Lab Officer in the lab. They can get help from each other and pro-crew but the mates are supposed to take a step back and let the students run the show.
The students that have had their time in the spotlight so far have been stepping up and impressing us all with how quickly they picked up the sailing and lab techniques that we’ve been learning for the past few weeks. We will be anchoring in the next few days and wrapping up program with presentations from students and some fun events to come. I have been reflecting a lot on what I will miss most from this time on Cramer, and while there’s a lot that I am looking forward to for when I get back home, I can’t help but think that I’ll be missing this community and my lack of cell phone coverage. But for now I will appreciate the sunrises, sunsets, stars, consistent laughter, and learning that comes with being here with all of these lovely folks!