written by Foxtrot/Sierra mate, Liz Deveau
August 14, 2017
We woke up with the sun and the birds at Nanny Cay Marina. We had breakfast and took advantage of the hoses to give our boat’s a freshwater clean before hopping off to go to the shops for some last minute souvenirs. The kids came back with a lot of goodies, mostly snacks for the boat, fun stickers and t-shirts.
We all helped to get our boats ready for departure from the hot docks as early as possible. We de-docked smoothly and exited the channel into the wonderfully cool breeze. We put up our sails, shut off our engines and made our way across the channel to Little Harbor on Peter Island, a favorite spot in the BVI for sure. On the way over, we had a lesson on med-anchoring as we would need to at this new destination. After med-anchoring beautifully on the first attempt, we settled in right away. We were delightedly the only boats in the harbor!
We jumped in the water after a little bit of relaxation time to go turtling and water sporting for the afternoon. One group of students enjoyed tubing and wakeboarding while the other group snorkeled around the harbor looking for turtles to try to catch and tag. The second group to go turtling found a turtle and caught it — our first turtle of the program! We brought it onboard, took its measurements, put in the tags and released it back to its habitat. The students were thrilled by the momentous occasion. They were all completely silent and watching intently as we collected the data we needed. Everyone was taking photos in awe and soaking up the moment.
After the turtle’s release, the Sierra students came over to Spyglass to work on their research projects. They collected substantial data at the surrounding reef. The Foxtrot students went on a hike to the abandoned resort on the island. They had a blast exploring the old run down structures and the view from the top of the hike of Little Harbor. The bay is so small and perfectly crystal clear.
After the hike, everyone went back to their home boats to get started on dinner. We made a group favorite, mac n’ cheese with hot dogs! After dinner and boat clean, we all went up on deck to star gaze. The clouds were few and far between and the light pollution is almost nonexistent. We looked up at the stars and were even able to see the Milky Way! We fell asleep on hammocks and sleeping bags beneath the clear night sky.
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.