written by mate, Keiley James
June 9, 2018
The students woke up at Hodges Creek Marina, excited to learn about their new boats and what it means to be onboard with our team! They spent the morning checking out the Sail Caribbean Divers’ dive shop and learning more about their new floating homes. Staff explained to each student crew the different mechanisms and lingo we use onboard, and shortly thereafter, boats were off docks with a student skipper of the day calmly and cooly directing at the helm.
On our voyage across the Sir Francis Drake channel to Cooper Island, crews learned how to raise their sails all by themselves, and managed to sail all the way to their destination on their first go at it. They reached a max speed of 10.2 knots!
Once arrived at Cooper, the students completed their sail with a successful mooring ball pickup. Then, some of our divers began their confined skills portion off their certification courses, while the rest of the recreational divers and non-divers went on a fun snorkel to Cistern Rock. They saw an eel, many parrotfish, and learned about other very interesting reef creatures. With go pros and water proof cameras in hand, the students attempted to capture the magic of the reef.
Following the snorkel and the divers completing their training for the day, all crews headed back to the boats to shower and eat a delicious dinner of burritos. The faithful crews shared many laughs together, one crew even ceremoniously raising a pair of shark patterned Chubbies branded shorts as their “mascot burgee”.
At the end of the night, we all pitched in to help clean our boat a bit before a boat meeting was held to go over the highs and lows of the day, as well as what we’d look forward to for tomorrow. Students all went to bed at an early hour, very tired from their busy and exciting day, but eager to see what tomorrow has in store.
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.