B-watch had an early breakfast, so we were woken up at 07:15. It was nice on deck! It wasn’t too cold for the first time in what seems like a while. Tommy, Neal, and I got dressed and headed up to breakfast at 07:30. Brandon cooked us a breakfast of oatmeal with raisins and walnuts. It was excellent, as always.
B-watch then mustered and took the deck at 08:00, for the 08:00-12:00 watch. I started out as navigator, which was hard because I had not been the navigator since we went through New York City. I got help from Ben, who initially helped me do bearing fixes. The problem was, we could barely see the coast line nor could we see any noticeable landmarks or buoys in the water. We decided to do deduced reckoning instead. I did not know how to do this, so Ben showed me, and I quickly got the hang of it. The boat was going about 4 knots. Every 30 minutes, I marked the boat’s location on the chart: it usually went about two nautical miles, which is pretty slow. Someone spotted dolphins off the starboard side, and a pod of about 30 dolphins came right up next to us. We could see their gray backs had spots of black, as these dolphins frolicked around our boat for about 20 minutes. They jumped out of the water, and we could see them dive down and swim under and around the boat. Truly incredible, curious creatures!
Shortly after, we did deck wash, and ½ of B-watch left for Marine Biology class. In class, we talked about the reading we recently did on Bluefin Tuna, and their evolutionary traits and risks of over fishing. Those fish are tanks, but they do taste pretty good. For the last hour of watch, I stood at forward lookout. Didn’t see much, but the weather was nice. For lunch, Brandon cooked up some amazing stir-fry with rice. I had history class at 1400, and after class Johnny, Tommy, Alex, and I started writing our sea shanty. Pretty quality material. We all relaxed until dinner, which was pork, corn, lettuce and onion tacos, along with some soup.
During dinner, I found out I was the next Junior Watch Officer, and I prepped while we ate. We had the 18:00-20:00 watch; I led the muster, then we took the deck. The watch went pretty smoothly except for a couple rough patches, but after all was said and done, it was a pretty successful watch. It was definitely not easy, and I have a new respect for the mates who have to do this every day. I will get more opportunities to improve in the future, and everything is a learning experience. My watch ended a few hours ago, and I’m a little tired. I reviewed tomorrow’s watches because I am JWOing the 04:00-08:00 watch in the morning, and that should be fun. Up and at ‘em again tomorrow morning!