written by Ocean student, Jess Michael
June 4, 2018
I can’t believe we are already halfway through the program. In just seven days, we have all gotten to know each other, for those of us learning to dive, we completed our open water certification, and we are sailing well as a team. We started out our day at the marina in Nanny Cay. It was a relaxed morning while we waited for provisions to arrive.
After breakfast, we walked over to a couple of the shops onshore to spend some time perusing. We later got the opportunity to sit in on an ASA lesson delivered to the Echo students for a nice change of pace from our marine biology curriculum. As much as I love studying marine science, it is very beneficial for all of us to get to learn more about sailing, as well. Today, we got in a lot of sailing practice starting with the de-docking at the marina. We prepped, left the dock in ten minutes (a record!).
We made our way to another dock to fuel up. Docking and de-docking at Fat Hogs was very challenging as the approach is difficult with a mooring field nearby, wind pushing us into the dock, and a small fishing boat docked in the way. It took some maneuvering, but we docked without a problem! One of our crew at the roaming fender position had to keep holding a fender on the front of the port bow and monitor the fishing boat. Once fueled, we began our de-docking process and it went off without a hitch! One of the smoothest de-dockings from that location according to our captain – our crew couldn’t feel more accomplished.
We began our sail to Trellis Bay and along the way we practiced a fair amount of tacking. I, for one, feel a lot more confident in my ability to sail from today’s adventures. Coming in to the mooring field and picking up a mooring ball is still something we as a team need practice with. There is a good wind and some current here which added to the challenge, but we overcame it. Third try’s the charm, right? 🙂
After a fantastic dinner of stuffed peppers, we finished up some routine chores and then played some games on the bow of the boat. It has been a truly great bonding time for us all as we learn more about each crew member by getting to ask them about themselves during our games. I can’t wait to see how much more we grow as individuals and as a team in the coming week.
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.