written by Early Alpha mate, Richard Thomsom
June 14, 2017
Day 6 of the Early Alpha program saw the crews rise early to a beautiful morning in Great Harbour on Peter Island, accompanied by a wonderful breakfast of oatmeal, apples and cinnamon to get everyone energized for the day’s activities. As breakfast was cleaned, the divers readied themselves for another busy morning of diving, for which they left around 8a.m. The non-divers subsequently ferried across to one of the catamarans of the Foxtrot and Sierra fleet for some early morning chill time, including a marine biology lesson and the opportunity for some snorkeling around Great Harbour. Around 11a.m., the non-divers opted to return to their fleet to play a number of card games with their mate, including “Fat Five”, “Egyptian Rat Screw,” and “Cheat.” The Program Director even came to join in! It was a really great and well-deserved bit of fun and down-time after a very busy start to the program.
Around midday, the non-divers prepared a wonderful Tikka Masala lunch for the divers’ return. This was enjoyed by everyone altogether, before the skipper of the day re-capped the important topic of pre-departure checks and then organized dropping the mooring ball at 1:30p.m. A short sail over to Nanny Cay followed. The Captain and Mate re-capped winch safety with the students and explained the processes of docking and maneuvering a yacht under power in confined spaces. The crews clearly rose to the challenge as they approached a dock for the first time ever on program and carried out an almost flawless docking on their first attempt. This was really fantastic to see and be a part of.
The students then undertook a deep clean of the boat, and were subsequently rewarded with a chance to explore the nearby shops, beach and to call home. Showering in an air-conditioned land shower is definitely the highlight of being on docks for most students and staff, so everyone was very excited for shower time before moving on to prepare an excellent dinner of fajitas. After dinner clean, the crew made their way to the beach for their daily boat meeting, complete with a welcome breeze and some group games. It had been a very busy day for everyone, and by 9:30p.m., the crews were very much ready for a good night’s sleep in preparation for a long sail the following day.
Photos by Richard Thomsom
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.