"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines.

Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." -Mark Twain

>> Sunday, October 2, 2011

After leaving the history laden location of Mystic, we set sails for the Chesapeake Bay. This trip has been saturated with novel experiences and the sail from Mystic to Chesapeake was another first for the students. We were at sea for 3 days. When the ship is at sea for multiple days it becomes more alive than usual with spirit and movement of bodies. The spontaneous interaction with a natural medium joined with the necessary operations of the ship imbue every moment with action and decision that dictate the future in a very real and actual sense.

The students are getting there sea legs and gaining the knowledge that they will require to facilitate the ship and her duties. Some are nervous, but becoming aware and comfortable—others seems as if they have been at sea for years. Regardless of the various emotional senses of belong, we are all becoming aware that this is our home—this collection of wood and steal is our vessel of discovery and adventure.

The evening before we approach Chesapeake Bay we encountered some high winds and moderately heavy seas. The students were, at times, frightened by the inherent power of the sea, but were also enriched with pride and excitement for their ownership and responsibility of becoming seafarers. After some seemingly long hours in the dark navigating our passage into the Chesapeake Bay we arrived at our anchorage at sunrise--seamlessly beginning a new day in this enticing world of our own creation.

Going ashore with Captain Smith's family we were entertained and educated on the oyster and crab fisheries by those who know it best: local individuals that have fished and lived in these waters for generations. The students were able to develop their field notebooks and be hands on with the creatures they were inspecting. Academic credit was being established through this field day, but was seemingly secondary to the wonderment provided by the creatures that lay in their hands. After the measuring, illustrating, investigating, lecturing, and discussing their came a few instances of ingestion of raw oysters. It was enjoyed.

Following the educational day on the salt marsh we were introduced to more educators, family, and friends as we had a proper crab feast on the James river. Sitting on the dock, listening to conversations about adventure, the times to come aboard, and the subtle water lapping at the beautiful wooden skip-jack in her slip, we all enjoyed the festive and restful atmosphere before departing back to our home: The Harvey Gamage. Bellies full and spirits high we sang songs and recounted the day. Sleep was sound and long as we are at a peaceful anchorage, but we all await what adventures will evolve in each moment to come. We extend our salty and warm regards to all of you and will update you when able.

P.S. I apologize that I am unable to provide any images this time, but technology and time are not permitting.


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