written by Social Media Coordinator, Ryan Smith
June 8, 2018
Our Sail Caribbean team has been hard at work in the past couple of days, turning over and replenishing our beloved base and boats, and most importantly, prepping for the arrival of our Early Alpha, Early Foxtrot and Early Sierra programs! Our diligent team of staff moved about with extra pep in their strides today, knowing that students would be climbing onboard our vessels by the afternoon and evening. Days like today are a habitual amount of collected chaos, with many moving parts maneuvering amongst each other, even from two different islands (the USVIs and the BVIs). Although the day can be rather long and tiring for our traveling students, at the end of the day, it’s almost palpable that it is also the beginning of a profound experience.
At our base, leaders of all fields (operations, office and sail) awoke with the sun and went about the day prepping the boats, inventory, provisioning, the works! A group of our leadership team members headed over to St Thomas via ferry ride to greet arriving STT flyers while a few EIS student arrivals were greeted by one of our operations staff members.
When we were all together back at our base of Hodges Creek Marina, students and staff transferred duffel bags onto their new floating homes, two 45′ foot catamarans named Salome and Grenade, and two 50′ monohulls named Tintoret and Mayotte, and man, they are some beauts. Everyone was eager to get off their feet and settle in to their space, meeting their crewmates along the way. It wasn’t long before we all were enjoying a delicious meal of chicken, rice and ‘slaw, freely devouring it from the cockpits of our new abode, among new friends.
Following some much enjoyed replenishment, students sat attentively as an infamous “Mike Talk” was delivered, naturally by Mike Liese himself under the moonlight, where he outlined our Sail Caribbean policies, standards, and expectations during each and every program that we run.
Each boat’s crew then held their first boat meeting within their yacht’s salon. During the boat meeting, the crew can get better acquainted with each other and had brief introductions to different aspects of the program, such as the roles on the duty roster and ship’s logs. After wrapping up the meeting, students were quick to relish in the opportunity to rest up from a long day of travel, and in anticipation of leaving the docks the following morning. Look forward to the crews’ boat photos prior to leaving docks in the next trip update for Day 2, or have an early look for yourself by checking out our Sail Caribbean Facebook page later today!
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.