Thursday, September 01, 2005

En Route to South America

Statistic of the trip: of 700 students, 67 percent are female, 33 percent are male. I have no idea why that is.

Classes have started and things are a little hectic trying to set up before each period. Luckily, I’m managing four work-study students and a crew member, and given that this is the most organized I’ve been in my entire life, things with work and schedule are going as smoothly as possible while a ship is rocking in the middle of the Atlantic

We passed Cuba, Haiti, and Jamaica yesterday (all visible from the ship), and are halfway between the islands and Venezuela. The seas are a little choppy (nothing as bad as we will encounter at the Cape of Good Hope), but there is something incredibly comforting being rocked in oscillations of four seconds or so. You feel like you’re being cradled when you go to sleep. Walking down the hall or going up the stairs is always a lot of fun… no matter how sober you are, you feel a little drunk.

Stairs, stairs, stairs. We have access to seven decks, and are going up and down the stairs what must be hundreds of times a day. It didn’t take long to feel comfortable with it. After getting lost for several days, I think the staff understands the layout of the ship pretty well now, so it takes us thirty seconds to get from anywhere to the staff lounge, where we meet every night. Last night was so windy that we decided to put on windbreakers and see how far we could lean forward with the wind holding us up with some of the shorter folk leaned almost 45 degrees. We were finally kicked out by the ship’s safety officer, who told us what that what we were doing was really stupid. After putting a second of thought into it, we agreed. It really doesn’t take much to fall overboard. But god, it was fun.

There was a problem with one of our remote Transvideo cameras in Fremont recently, and we’ve had it set up so that we can work remotely, and I was controlling it from the middle of the Atlantic while sitting in our panoramic faculty lounge. I thought that was pretty cool.

I’ve also managed to wake up early to see the sunrise recently. I highly recommend it to anyone who’s ever been out of sight of land before. I’ve been taking a lot of panoramic and time-lapse pictures around here, and even though internet is pretty expensive, I think it is worth taking the time to upload these because I feel it captures the essence of the trip pretty well. I’ll be doing several full-res panoramas in each country and make posters of them when I return. Here are some low-res versions:

Here’s the view of Nassau at night as described in the previous posting:

And as a bonus, the narcoleptic tour guide:

I’ll try to put a little on each of the staff members as the day goes by. Jason, the campus store guy who lives across the hall from me, has a great story that I’ve been told can be read on this site: . I know the story is hilarious in person, but I have yet to see the website. But enjoy.

Thanks to everyone who has been sending emails (and posting messages). I promise I’ll be back to you soon.

Back to work!


Mandy said...

oh amigo...making me kinda jealous with those sunset-evening pictures... ;-) Sounds like you are having a great time... Well, Dunny and I are driving up to Tahoe this weekend ....yeah...but I will soooo miss my personal 80's DJ in the car ...:-)))) Tschuess, Mandy

Bob said...

"Statistic of the trip: of 700 students, 67 percent are female, 33 percent are male. I have no idea why that is."

That was Hornbeak's favorite stat too =) He couldn't believe more guys had caught on to this...

Love the tour guide--good thing he was sitting down! And the sunset is unbelievable...

Aden said...

Why, when 66.6666% (repeating, of course) of the guests are female are you hanging out with the staff at night?!?! Come on!! We're not at NASA anymore!

Dunagan said...

Rick Rick Rick!!!!