written by Foxtrot/Sierra mate, Liz Deveau
August 16, 2017
The wind woke us all up like a pre-set alarm. No one complained about the strong breeze though as it kept us cool and the bugs away. We started on breakfast right away followed by a cleaning so we could up anchor on time. The day began pretty early, but we were all excited to set sail on our longest sail of the program — to Anegada!
The students worked together to chart our course and find the right heading to follow. The sail to Anegada is the only sail we do where we lose sight of land, so a precise heading is crucial. The winds were strong enough to call for reefing our main sails. It made for awesome sailing. One yachts reached 11.6 knots of speed even with the reef in — a summer record for the Foxtrot and Sierra program!
We arrived at Anegada and the students excellently navigated the snaking channel that leads to the mooring field. After lunch, all the crews hopped into dinghies and RIBs to head to shore. We rented trucks and drove the fleet to Loblolly Bay for a day at the beach and some renowned snorkeling. The kids loved riding in the back of the truck as always and mooed every time they saw a cow roaming around the road.
Once at Loblolly, it started to rain almost immediately. The lagging rain couldn’t stop the fun though! Some of the staff ran to the beach to jump in the water with a boat load of students in tow sprinting along with them. The visibility left a little something to be desired but we still saw a Southern Sting Ray and had a blast splashing around the water as the skies opened up on us. A few of the students sought shelter under the roof of the restaurant and enjoyed some of the appetizers including the famous Anegada lobster fritters.
Everyone received a lesson on sharks and rays that the kids got really excited about since they had just seen a sting ray! The Sierra students braved the weather and swam out to the reef to collect one last data set for their projects. There was a slack line set up between two trees near the beach and the students took turns showing off their balance or lack thereof as they walked across the line.
After a few hours at the beach, we loaded up the trucks again and made our way back to the hotel dock. We went back to our boat homes to get started on showers and dinner. After dinner and dinner clean, the Sierra students and a few interested Foxtrot students had a squid dissection. Each student got their own squid and learned all about the anatomy of it. They came back smelling strongly like fish but had huge smiles on their faces.
We had a quiet night on board after that and hung out chatting, playing card games and making friendship bracelets. After boat meeting, the students started making plans and organizing for Challenge Day! Tomorrow is challenge day and they absolutely want to be prepared. We went to bed fairly early all set and ready for the day ahead!
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.