Monday, May 15, 2017

Orientation to the Seamans

It's been a little over a day aboard the ship that will be our home for the next five weeks, the Robert C. Seamans. Our main engine has a Darth Vader hula girl- yes its as weird and awesome as it sounds, kind of like our engineer Dylan's beard- that dances when the engine is on. It has a Lego cowboy keychain you can see standing at the helm, and our cabins have names like Sleepy Hollow or Sixteenth Street. 

Since we just spent the past 40 hours learning about the ship, preparing for emergencies aboard, and starting to become familiar with it, I will take you on a bit of a walk around her. I'm not really sure why ships are "she", but that's how it works, so I'll refer to her like that. I'm sitting aft, on the quarterdeck. It's at the stern or the back of the boat, where Daela is currently at the helm, and Big Robby and Ben, the Stanford Fisherman and our TA, are setting up the canes to try and catch us lunch.  

Walk towards the bow, or the front, on the starboard, or right, side of the ship, and you come across the lovely railings that held our bodies in as C watch fed the crazy bioluminescent organisms we saw during our evening watch. Watches are one of the three groups our crew is split up into, and we take turns being on or off. One thing we learned is that Charlie's curry tastes much better coming in than out. 

Keep going forward and you can start to see the lab, where we have all the equipment we will be using for our projects. 

Cross the ship, and on the Port side of the science lab you can see where we will be doing our science deployments. We have a carousel, where we have equipment that measures light, salinity, pressure, temperature, and other extremely useful parameters we need for our research. We also have equipment to collect sediments. This was the first we successfully deployed, and we took a sample of the sediment of the bay we were anchored at earlier in the day, and we found greyish-green clay.  

Amidships, or the middle of the ship, below decks, which is the inside; we have the galley, what you would call the kitchen, and a nice salon area with a library. Our Steward Charlie, the same one that made the curry, makes magic there. The same food get's put on tables that move with the motion of the waves, but it looks like they swing around, it's quite a confusing site. Bobby C is a pretty special place, and I hope to keep learning from her as the voyage goes on. 

-Andrea Contreras

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