It's been an exciting last few days! We all got to go on shore for the first time in six weeks and boy didn't it feel good! Friday was technically out first time on land, but only for a few hours. Today was when we had the whole day to explore St. John's beautiful National Park.
We got shuttled to land by the two small rescue boats. When zooming to land, I glanced back at Cramer only to see her getting slightly smaller as land got closer and closer. Surprisingly, walking on land didn't feel that much different than on the boat. Although if we stepped on land right after the gale I think that'd be an entirely different story. Many of us ran back into the water to be engulfed by the crystal clear coolness.
Once we all made it to land Schelly led the way to an incredible snorkeling place on the other side of the island. When we were about halfway there we were missing a pair of shoes, so I ended up staying back with Brier and Bec. The three of us decided to check out the old sugar plantation ruins while we awaited the return of the tevas. It was cool to see, the old structures still standing after all this time and what the building might've looked like when they were still in use. It's fascinating to imagine the lives of those who had inhabited the space before we had walked through it. There were so many cute little lizards all over the place too!
Cute little fish swimming in the bright coral
Jenna returned soon with the shoes and we then continued our journey to Leinster Bay. Snorkeling was amazing! Right after getting in the water we spotted an octopus chilling on a rock. It was doing little circles moving all around the rock while staying the exact same color the whole time. There were also so many brightly colored fish, rays, a sea turtle, huge scary sea urchins, cuttlefish and a little shark. I unfortunately missed the sea turtle and the shark.
After swimming, Steph and I enjoyed our lovely sunbutter&jelly sandwiches (with homemade bread!) and yummy trail mix. Upon our return, the ships company gathered on the quarter deck to attend the Sheet Anchor Gala. With light jazz playing in the background, we all walked around admiring each other's sheet anchors. It was a nice way to celebrate how much hard work we've all put into these sketchbooks that now hold so many fond memories, useful information from the classes back on shore and our time on the ship; along with some beautiful art work as well. I loved seeing everyone's unique styles and the creativity of all my shipmates.
While the sun set we all hung out on the quarter deck, tying knots into bracelets and sharing stories of our time ashore.
Jordan, Brier, Robbie, Matt, Alison, Anne looking at the sheet anchors.
- Paige Bell, A Watch
P.S. A special shout out to Inez Rose Bell Furth and Ru Bear, I love you both so so much! I'll see you two in a few short days Eeekkkk!