The students then finished cleaning the Lady Maryland top to bottom- one of the last of their duties as the trip comes to end. Tonight, they presented the final projects that have been a huge comoponent of their education here on Lady Maryland. The students chose specific topics in whale ecology and marine science, developed research questions, proposed potential hypotheses, then created potential research experiments to test their questions. They presented their results both with detailed posters and creative interpretations like raps, skits, and poems.
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
On their last full day at sea, the cadets got to test their new sailing expertise in the Schooner Olympics. The students competed in teams of Port and Starboard Watch in the following events:
1. Ballantine coiling
2. Line identification/pin chase
3. Knot tying
4. Relay race (stations included locating bearings on watch off the bow, reciting emergency protocol, and identifying compass directions)
5. Writing down standing orders verbatim
6. Using the ship's halyard lines to lift our beloved second mate Joe.
Tuesday, August 5, 2014
After anchoring in the Narragansett Bay, the cadets got to learn about bouyancy and boat design by building their own miniature boats and testing how much "cargo" they could hold. Their supplies? Nothing more than a sheet of aluminum foil, two balloons, four popsicle sticks, and a strip of duct tape. The cadets split up into groups and competed to see who could construct the strongest boat.
What an eventful day! The cadets cast big nets and pulled in a variety of specimen, including over 80 different crabs. They then helped anchor The Lady Maryland near the sparsely populated Cuttyhunk Island. After a quick swim (see previous post), the cadets got to dissect a squid a write a letter with a squid quill (spine) and squid ink. The entire crew then took shifts hopping into The Swamp Fox, The Lady Maryland's smaller and more navigable counterpart, to head to the island proper. Captain took everyone to a local ice cream shop and bought them each a two-scoop cone- delicious!
After a good noght's sleep, everyone got to hop on a small boat and take a tour of local resident Seth Garfield's oyster farm. Seth even let us taste some of his tasty- and salty- oysters!
Though some cadets say they are looking forward to sleeping in once they get back, spirits remain high, and almost everyone seems sad that the trip is coming to an end.
Sunday, August 3, 2014
Today the cadets sailed The Lady Maryland into New Bedford! They helped dock the ship, and we got off to walk around in this famous fishing town.
First we visited Seamen's Bethel, a historic non-denominational church for sailors. Because New Bedford was for many years the home of so many different seamen of different cultural and religious backgrounds, the church served as a common place of worship for people less accustomed to the land-lubbing life. This included Herman Melville, the author of Moby Dick, who featured the bethel in his classic fictional novel. The Bethel includes a plaque in tribute of Melville as well as a number of plaques honoring the many, many sailors who have tragically passed away at sea.
We then went to the New Bedford Whaling Museum, which is one of the most famous and extensive whaling museums in the world (yes, there are a lot and yes, this one is awesome.) We watched a short movie about the history of whale hunting, specifically in New Bedford and the Cape Cod Bay; then, our tour guide Tom led us around the museum. Some highlights included a room full of scrimshaw craftwork (the medium of choice for artistic...or just bored...whalers) as well as a complete whaling ship , built to half scale, that the cadets could get on and walk around inside.
After being on land, we came back to The Lady Marland and enjoyed our time docked to the land by playing games like Wah and Big Booty.
Can't believe that the trip is more the halfway over!