Day 09 S/V Kaisei: Shipboard Life

12 08 2009

Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Lat: 34° 28’ N Lon: 141° 43’ W

A blog reader asked, “How does it feel, being in the middle of the ocean?”

It all starts with the people. One of Project Kaisei co-director’s Mary Crowley’s lifelong professional career has been matching people with crews and vessels. She’s done a fine job on Kaisei. We are blessed to have a group of highly experienced sailors at the core of our crew, including Mary herself. It is wonderful to see the diverse crew, from scientists to media, living and working well together.

Our seasoned captain, Mike, embraces his responsibility and patiently oversees all aspects of the ship and its mission. The 24-year old energetic first mate, Adrian, climbs the rigging like Spiderman and always with a smile. Our chief engineer, Cathy, tends her engine room like an extension of her life; listening, watching, and anticipating any problems. The bosun, Norton, electrician, Michael, cook, Jocelyne, and all deckhands take to their work with professional ease. All the while, the science team and photographers are focused on their mission of collecting and documenting marine debris around the clock. Our active and passive capture methods are being fine-tuned by the capture team.

After more than a week of adjusting to shipboard life, our routines, responsibilities, and the demands of our work assignments are all falling into place. There are 25 people aboard sharing cabins with 2, 4 and 6 bunks; each with its own head and shower. Below decks is the main salon, which is split into work and lounge areas. To the port side, aft of the companionway, begins the communications corner. Working forward, and adjacent the communications hub, lays the video “studio.” Next to them is the science area, filled with supplies and equipment. To the starboard side is the lounge, where work and relaxation occur simultaneously. Above the salon is the mess room, where meals are taken and meetings are held.

The main decks above provide ample room for testing equipment and relaxing moments while viewing the spectacular sunrises, sunsets, and stars. The pilot house is where all of the ship’s navigation and communication equipment are housed. Within the pilot house is the spacious chart table, where the ship’s log is kept and the course charts are available for all to view.

The romance of the brigantine Kaisei is matched by her functionality as a working platform for our mission. Her steel hull, great and flexible sail plan, and the unique experience of voyaging on a tall ship is enriching to all onboard. Moonlit nights under full sail, mid-Pacific, provide unforgettable experiences for all who are fortunate enough to be onboard the Kaisei.

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2 responses

13 08 2009
Carol Carlson

Thank you for the description of life at sea. Sounds like you hit the sweet spot weather-wise and crew-wise. Good on ya! Of course I’d like to be there.

Did you meet up with the New Horizons or did you literally “pass in the night”? Do you have direct communication with them? Are they finding the same things you are?

Now that you are in the gyre, how have you decided where to research? And do you keep moving slowly in a certain path, trawling the whole way, or do you zoom from spot to spot and then stay a while?

Fascinating!

13 08 2009
Carol Carlson

Just read the New Horizon blog and their view of your amazing rendezvous. Wow.

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