written by Mate-In-Training, Anna Steinmetz
July 1, 2018
Today was my favorite day, challenge day! We have officially handed over the boat to the students. The crews are allowed three posed questions as a group for the whole day, while the staff Captain and Mate stand idle by and let them put everything they’ve learned to good use.
After a sail of about 3 1/2 hours from Cane Garden Bay, we arrived safe and sound at our anchoring for the night, Long Bay on Tortola. With the whole afternoon before us, we ate lunch and prepared to a go ashore for a day of beach fun. As with every program we do at Sail Caribbean we partner with YEP, the Youth Empowerment Program which gives the local youth a wide range of experiences and opportunities. While going out on kayaks, small boats and water sporting, the students and YEP kids first combed the beach clearing trash and cleaning the shore. Later, we hosted a beach barbecue where everyone feasted on portabella mushrooms, burgers, and hotdogs! After dinner, we had to say goodbye to all of the amazing students we met through YEP, and headed back to boats for a Challenge Day debrief!
We had a few things to work on, but overall the students did an absolutely amazing job at running the boat for the whole day. They all have a few things they want to work on for the rest of the program, and a new appreciation for everything that needs to happen on a boat every day to be fully operational and successful. Overall, they are all excited to take more responsibility on the boat!
The greatest challenge during the program was staying entertained during the quarantine period. Not being able to leave your boat and not having a phone, which was a crutch against boredom, it was difficult at first to stay entertained.