Written by Riley Addison
Edited by Meredith Evridge

Day 15

The dawn crept up on us. The morning sun streamed through our hatches and made our eyes snap open. Good morning! The dive boat would be picking up our divers at eight thirty, so we expedited breakfast and they grabbed their gear. All the divers packed their bags for half a day of diving, and everyone else made a day pack for hiking. The divers had two dives today. One was down to a large cargo ship, and the other dive was at “Shipwreck City,” with many smaller wrecks. They reported seeing the ocean teeming with a lot of sea life, turtles, barracuda, and an octopus.

While this underwater business was going on, the hikers worked their way up the island’s volcano to see the amazing views of the island. It felt unbelievably refreshing to stretch and use our legs. While we are active during sail, there is the essential factor of cardio that is missed. Don’t worry, we caught up today! Around noon, the two groups joined each other and headed back to boats. Lunch today was a zingy pasta salad with kale.

The fifteen mile sail to Saba was a Challenge Day Sail, meaning that the students took over the boat and made all the decisions on navigating, sail trim, and all the usual parts of running a boat! Staff only stepped in if there was some potential danger. Though our campers were a bit nervous at the prospect of relying on their knowledge, they perked up as they realized just how much collective knowledge the boat had! Working together as a team, the students did well, and we made good time. Approaching Saba, our retinas were greeted with gorgeous and mysterious views of the island. Steep cliffs surrounded the island on all sides, and the peaks were tucked inside clouds. In the lee of the island, we moored, had dinner, cleaned the boat, and prepared ourselves for a busy tomorrow.

Day 16

Bright and early, breakfast was eaten and whisked away. By eight thirty, our first group of Saba explorers was already off and running. They would spend their morning combing the windward side of town for treasures and baubles while the second group had two morning dives. Our under-the-sea campers experienced amazing visibility, spotting turtles, sharks and sting rays galore. Some of the sand is heated by magma from Saba’s dormant volcano, and if hands are placed in the sand, one could feel the temperature difference. After the divers came back bursting with exciting stories, the other half of us hopped on to head out to a snorkel.

The town exploration was laid back. The views were amazing and everyone had time to do some shopping, order food, or relax at the park. It was a lovely change to be on land and spread out a bit. When it came time to go back, we loaded up in the taxi and headed back to the dive boat where they would take us back to our boats. An open-air taxi of sorts!

Tonight’s dinner was a bit different than usual as Mayotte was on dinner duty for all twenty four of us. Zanzibar picked up their end of the responsibility by baking cakes. We all squeezed onto Mayotte for dinner and celebrated one of our dear camper’s birthday! Thunder and lightning danced in the distance, but never found its way towards us. Properly exercised, surrounded by close friends and stuffed full of home cooking, Zanzibar headed back and Delta called it a night.

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