Sleep and Other Fantasies

December 17, 2023

Author: Lev Janicki, Hamilton College


Paparazzi (Davi) ambushed me.

Ship's Log

17 December 2023Current Position: 35' 17.2'5 S x 176'10.2' EShip's Heading & Speed: 4.4 kts & 260 HDGWeather: Wind NWxN, light. Clouds: cirrocumulus, sunny.

There are a lot of things about being at sea that I really love. The endlesshorizon, beautiful ocean color, even the rocking of the ship becamecomforting after I had enough time to get used to it. The sleep schedule isnot included. I had night watch last night, which was pretty beautiful fromthe sundog we saw to the totally clear night of stars after. Orion lined upperfectly with the rigging, which made it easy to steer true. I saw a couplemeteors, but some of my watchmates claim they did not witness any. Either Iam much luckier than I thought or much more sleep deprived.Based on how I felt at the end of night watch I have to wager on the secondoption. I have gotten into a routine of passing out after night watch,waking up for 7am breakfast, then going back to bed for 3 more hours tillwatch meeting, which is exactly the kind of nap schedule ingenuity it takesto be a functional human at  sea. During our Napier port stop, I told myfriends the watch schedule was 6 hours on 12 hours off and they found itdifficult to understand why sleep is so difficult. 12 hours sounds likeplenty until you have to eat all your meals, do all your homework, and takecare of all your personal needs. Plus the off time only conveniently ends upwith a full night of sleep on afternoon watch nights. The most interestingthing that happened during watch today was during our deck wash, when I losta brush over the side of the ship. I was scrubbing, I was scrubbing, andthen suddenly I was not scrubbing. The head of the brush flew right off thehandle into the ocean.Ship slang for Afternoon watch is Local Apparent Friday, because you havethe night off to party. Since I just finished my afternoon watch, my LAF hasbegun, but I do not feel like I have much party time between a scienceproject, journal work, this blog post, and our final mission beginningtomorrow. Speaking of final mission, all the watches receive the guidelinesfor it at class today. Fairly simple in principle: plot a course to alocation, do a neuston tow and process it, reach another location by the endof watch. The catch is that our watch officers are no longer guiding us. AWatch is not worried - we're on top of it. People are going aloft more thanever with the end of our trip looming. I am not because it is so tall andscary, but the students with less respect for their lives are having a greattime. Midrats have just become available to eat which is my cue to finishthis blog. Excited for mission tomorrow!Lev JanickiHamilton CollegeA Watch

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