Foxtrot 1 & Sierra 1 2015 – Day 16
written by Marine Science Intern, Grace McKenna
Little Harbor to Nanny Cay Marina
Day 16 was race day! The morning started off early with everyone up and ready to drop the ball by 7:20am. Both boats had a competitive spirit as they cruised out of Little Harbor. Matt was on the helm of Spyglass while Dylan held Miss You on course. After a fast downwind sail, both boats rounded Little Thatch and began an upwind trek. Paul, Reese, and Eric manned the jib sheets on Miss You as we beat upwind, while Liam and Emily helped adjust sail trim on Spyglass. Both boats tacked back and forth up the narrow channel, but forward progress was slow. Eventually, we decided to drop sails and motor towards our destination. At that point, both boats were about even, so the students settled for a tie.
As we cruised into the channel outside of Nanny Cay, students made a docking plan. On Miss You, Eric, Paul, and Paige prepared to toss dock lines while Matt and Marley acted as roaming fenders. The docking was speedy and skillful. Spyglass came into docks next, with David, Mayra, and Nico on dock lines and Aidan and Alejandro spotted and actively fended. Once on docks, both groups of students began a deep clean of their respective boats, motivated by the promise of phone and shop time to come! After Program Director Oliver went through a thorough cleaning inspections, the students were off to explore the few shops and stores at Nanny Cay. Nico got his favorite chocolate ice cream, and Kayla bought some string for everyone to make matching bracelets! Sierra students all spent a little time working on data analysis for their projects.
After shop time, students prepared and enjoyed a delicious meal of Mahi Mahi and potatoes. Then, after a quick lesson on nocturnal adaptations from Grace, all fun divers got ready to go on a night dive! Everyone was nervous and excited. The dive boat arrived at 7:00pm and took all the fun divers out to the Indians, a favorite dive site in the BVI. Nico, Julie, Vin and Matt spotted a sleeping hawksbill sea turtle under a coral head! Everyone loved playing with the bioluminescent dinoflagellates, which glow when disturbed and leave a fairy-dust like trail behind every night-time swimmer. Students headed back to their boats around 9:00pm for a highly anticipated land shower! The Foxtrot and Sierra students sat around for awhile, excitedly discussing their night dive experience over some hot chocolate before heading to bed after a fun-filled day.
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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.