"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

La Republica Dominicana

>> Monday, March 17, 2014

First, apologies for the long absence... We've all been busy with mid-terms, exploring the oldest city in the Western Hemisphere, and preparing for our service project adventure.

With a very fast passage leaving Trinidad, we were able to make a quick stop in Vieques, Puerto Rico before making landfall in Santo Domingo, DR, a successful week-long passage of nearly 800 nm using solely traditional means of navigation. Our GPS intentionally turned off by the captain, we relied on navigational fixes using the sun & stars and "dead reckoning," which calculates our progress using our course steered and speed to track our own progress. Our students, now well versed in the ship, are learning more advanced skills like celestial navigation by calculating our latitude by measuring the angle of the sun's apex--or our local apparent noon.

Here in the DR, we'll be working with a local school and orphanage that aims to help poor, mostly immigrant youth of Haitian decent. These kids often have no nationality status, and little prospect. In learning about the long, fractured history of Haitian & Dominican relations, we'll hopefully better understand how national policy and long-held perspectives on race affect these kids. We'll post more photos and student work in the next few days, so stay tuned!

And apologies for the slideshow that stopped working... you can still access all of our photos from the link at the top of the page under the banner, and we've replaced the small slideshow with a better, Flickr-supported one that is expandable within the blog.


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