Sierra 1 Trip Update Day 20 – Graham, Program Director
Today was the last day that Sierra was going to be on the water. At the end of this day, we will be on docks at the location that we first were introduced to each other, Hodges Creek Marina. After a late breakfast of French toast, we set in to the two major things we wanted to get done in the morning: Evaluations and the Crew Test. The Evaluations are by the students for the staff and the program. The Crew Test is covers all the sailing knowledge that students gained over the course of the trip. When all this was done, we all jumped in the ocean for one last moment before heading off to Long Bay to work with YEP (Youth Empowerment Project). When we arrived at Long Bay, we all finished planning what we where going to do with the YEP students. About thirty minutes after we arrived, we headed to the shore in the dinghy to meet with the nine students. Graham was first to do an introduction of everyone and started a fun game of The Great Wind Blows.
After we played the game for about 20 minutes, we all headed into the shade and started teaching our lessons. Each buddy pair chose a topic that they wanted to teach. Their four groups talking about Fish ID, Life Cycle, Invasive Species and Local Fish. Each one of the lessons lasted between 10 and 15 minutes, and each was amazing! Sierra took on this task with great heart and really made it a special moment for all the students to share what they learned with some young local youth. When the lessons where all done, we started the snorkel. During preparation, we all buddied up with a YEP student and helped them get comfortable snorkeling and identifying fish as we swam. By the time 3:00 p.m. rolled around, we were all heading back to the shore to do one last activity before departing. Like peoples of some cultures dance for the rains to come, we at Sail Caribbean dance to see the jellyfish disappear — we did the jellyfish dance! Essentially, this dance gets you to hold your arms up, wrists together, elbows together, knees together, feet pointed in, bum out and tongue out, then jump around and say “the jellyfish, the jellyfish, the jellyfish dance!” After all this was finished, YEP left in the truck and we headed back to the boat in order to raise anchor and prepare for our final departure.
After about an hour of motor sailing, we where getting pretty close to Hodges, so we all got into the positions that we knew so well. Kristen was our skipper for the maneuver, and did an excellent job organizing and coordinating our docking. She did so well, in fact, that it was no surprise when she effortlessly maneuvered the boat into the slip. From the time we entered the marina to when the boat was docked, a grand total of five minutes had gone by. She wasted no time and made no mistakes when putting the boat to rest in the slip! We cleaned Berlin from top to bottom, then got to eat a meal that we didn’t have to clean up! The pizza dinner was delicious. After dinner, we worked to organize ourselves and prepare to give our presentations to Foxtrot. The projects were incredible: each was so in-depth, bringing together a great deal of observation, research and reading that was done to culminate in a beautifully orchestrated lesson. We finished with awards and skits to poke fun about the quirky little habits everyone on the boat had…and of course we made plenty of fun of the staff! It was all great fun.