Wednesday, July 15, 2015

My New Assignment

At our initial crew meeting (and knot tying lesson) last night, I was given my crew assignment for our upcoming trip to the Seychelles. Eight of us will be spending a week on a catamaran sailing among the 115 Seychelles Islands.

I am very excited because I was named the official boat “Archivist.” Hubby D was assigned the Boatswain. I am still trying to understand what that is (and what the other terms are -- stern, helm, salon, galley -- wait --  I know galley -- food!).

Our captain, SW described my assignment, Archivist was like Frank Hurley’s job on the voyage of the Endurance with Ernest Shackleton.

The Endurance locked in the ice.

Frank Hurley
During that historic journey, Hurley and Shackleton were forced to destroy over 400 glass photo plates. They were only able to preserve 150 of the very best plates to document the journey.

SW charged me with great responsibilities. In our ship orders he wrote, “Just as Frank Hurley was charged with photographing the voyage to preserve the honor of the men on board and to ensure that the National Geographic funding was received, Brenda your task is to serve as the chief Archivist for the voyage, and ensure that appropriate photographs and video will be recorded.

You will do so with appropriate discretion and decency, and you will do so with a meager ration allotment of only two group photos per day, any unused allocation from the day many not be considered a carryover to the successive day. Sunsets and sunrises are free to capture at your sole discretion.”

This sunset was on the Moorings web site. I hope we have one this pretty while we are there.

I spent some time today reading the story of the Endurance. It was amazing. If you enjoy a great sea adventure, it is worth the effort to read.

I am inspired and hope that I can live up to my responsibilities. The Seychelles are beautiful islands so I will have plenty of material to work with. However, I am a bit concerned about the limitations that have been set of only 2 group photos per day.

The captain did not put a limitation on selfies, so maybe I can work around the other limitation.  HUMMMM.

Our selfie from the last catamaran we were on in Greece.
We leave day after tomorrow. Unfortunately we won’t have wifi or internet where we are going. You will have to wait for us to return to find out how well I live up to my assignment.

Here is an overview of the Seychelles from our charter company, The Moorings.

Lying 1,000 miles off Africa’s east coast, between 240 and 600 miles north of the equator in the Indian Ocean, the 115 islands that comprise the Republic of Seychelles are among the most isolated in the world. Arab traders first sailed to the Seychelles around 800 A.D. Phoenician, Polynesian, Chinese, and European explorers followed, but it wasn’t until the 1700s that French colonists settled on the larger islands. Today, the population of the entire country numbers only 84,000, and it represents a rich commingling of French, British, Indian, Middle Eastern, and African culture. The French influence remains prominent; Creole is commonly spoken along with English.

While coral atolls make up most of the 72 low-lying Outer Islands, the majority of the Inner Islands, the largest of which consist of Mahé, Praslin, and La Digue, are geological wonders of twisted granite, mountainous and lush with tropical forests that support species of birds found nowhere else on Earth. Giant tortoises inhabit some of the Seychelles, nesting on the fine, white-sand beaches fronted with exquisitely beautiful coral reefs and azure seas that make a Seychelles sailing vacation unique and enriching.

During June, July and August whale sharks can be spotted in the Seychelles.  If only we could be so lucky, it would definitely check one of my life goal boxes to see a whale shark in the wild. We have two dives set up for the middle of the week. Keep your fingers crossed.

I have to run now. I have to charge all my batteries for my cameras and make sure I have my waterproof casing for the cameras set and ready. And, where did I put that selfie stick? I am so happy the captain did not ban my selfie stick.  I would hate to have a mutiny before we leave the dock.

It is going to be a lot of fun!



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