August 4, 2016
In the early hours of Day 19, the Delta crew found themselves entering back into the BVIs after our down island adventure! We had completed our passage in record time, just under 12 hours from Saba to Cooper Island, where we picked up a mooring ball to wait out the last few hours of darkness.
The fair seas, good wind and expert helming of the crew during their shifts all made for a quick and enjoyable sail back from down island. Over the night, students enjoyed the amazing view of the night sky free of light pollution, midnight snacking and even flying fish coming onboard!
Moored safe and sound at Cooper, we all took the opportunity to grab a few hours of sleep as we waited for the sun to rise before moving to our final destination of the day, Long Bay, Beef Island. As the crew of Rioja began to rise from their slumber, we all celebrated our arrival and reflected on our down island adventures. Right away, breakfast prep and a boat tidy started happening, the essentials to recover from a long passage. Eating our eggs and English muffins underway, we motored over to Long Bay where we dropped our anchor. The crew then had a few hours to relax before the official start of Long Bay Day!
Rested up, we all then went ashore for the Sail Caribbean tradition of Olympics! From tug of war, to dizzy fender to bury your mate, the crew had a super fun time participating in the Olympic games along with the students from the rest of the mega fleet. Long Bay day continued after the competition was over with free time in the water, playing on standup paddleboards, kayaks and Picos and enjoying being together as a mega fleet. Dinner was a delicious barbecue on shore, after which we headed back to the boat. On board, our exhausted crew went right to bed to prepare for tomorrow, our last full day of program!
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.