"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

>> Monday, March 12, 2012


March 10, 2012

Dear Family and Friends,

Greetings from our Southern-most port stop of our voyage and the northern extent of the Andes, Trinidad. We are clearing out of customs this very moment to leave Trinidadian waters, so I need to keep it brief and just pass on a few tidbits.

Our last port stop to Carriacou was rather pleasant. During the first week of our semester voyage, we caught wind of the traditional boat building activity currently going on in Carriacou. We were inspired to meet the remaining Carriacou sloop builders face to face. Word was sent ahead that we were sailing their way, and upon our arrival to Windward, Carriacou, we were welcomed by the small boat building community with open arms. (See Zack’s posting about our visit for an account of our visit with the sloop builder, Alwin, for more details). We even were fortunate enough to go on a day sail on one of the working fishing sloops from Windward with the boat builder and captain, Uncle C. Carriacou was also a good place for us to focus on our academic coursework during heavy rains; explore the nearby coral reefs using our masks and fins; find ourselves in paradise on the secluded and postcard perfect Anse la Roche beach; and kayak through mangrove swamps in the Oyster Bay Marine Protected Area. Friday night we even had the opportunity in Tyrell Bay to socialize ashore and dance to live string band music.

Sunday morning we hauled back the anchor and got underway for Trinidad. By Tuesday we were on Port of Spain’s waterfront eating a variety of tasty West Indian food and drinking soursop smoothies at the well-known, “Breakfast Shed.” Since then, one thing has led to another and all of the sudden we must cut our ties to shore. In addition to eating delicious rotis and bakes, we have visited Hindu temples; watched hundreds of Scarlet Ibis’s roost in the mangroves of Caroni Swamp; hiked along a stunning stretch of Northern coast line in stands of Mora rain forests; partook in a special celebration of the Hindu celebration of color, Holi; joined in a steel pan band practice at a nearby Trinidadian pan-yard; spent a day at the Asa Wright Nature center; and enjoyed the waves, beach and bakes of Maracas Bay. Once again, people have generously shared their time, energy and life experiences with our group during our stay.

Student letters home were postmarked this morning. Hopefully you will receive these notes in your mail boxes in the near future to learn more details about some of these recent excursions listed above. We will post more pictures and words during our next port stop.

This upcoming passage will be the furthest of our trip so far and the students are also entering a new phase on watch standing: Junior Watch Officers.

We hope all is well with each of you and we will be in touch.

Best Regards,

Christine Simpson


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