BVI: Session 1 - Knot Guilty
Posted: Sun, Jul 8, 2012
Location: West End, Tortola
It’s the final day of our quest and it’s safe to say the 14 people I’ve spent the last 20 days with, almost 21, are now so close and we genuinely care about each other. It’s really incredible how teamwork and a little elbow grease can make strangers come together and create bonds that will not be lost after I return back home. We woke up early as the birds; 5am in the morning. Andy, Elliot, and Kristen led us on a hike up Spyglass Point. All of us felt it was a little bit of a struggle because of the incline and rocks that would slip every time you tried to use one as a stepping stone. But, this hike was nothing compared to Mt. Sage a week ago. It was different though because we trekked up a trail and not a road. Everything I saw was beautiful and green. Lots of vines and trees assisted me up the mountain when I had a little bit of trouble. When we rose to the top of the mountain we saw this fantastic view of all the islands. We stood on the rocks and let the view sink in to our memory. Spyglass Hill is where Blackbeard hid his treasure and jewels. We climbed to the summit where we found way-points that the pirates used at one point in time. A really fast runner would stay at the peak and look out of a spyglass for ships coming after his crew. When he saw the ships he would somehow run down the mountain (I don’t know how because it’s super steep) and warn Blackbeard. After our hike I sailed in our last race. The winds were powerful today so sailing was a lot of fun. We came in 4th place, but fortunately it wasn’t last! It seemed tricky because we had to turn around a buoy. We sailed back to where we began at West End and ate a fulfilling lunch at Pusser’s. Before that we had to clean every inch and every piece of eating utensils in our boat, so lunch was very satisfying and deserved. The BBQ tonight will be the last meal with everyone, and our last memories together. I’m looking forward to my “see you laters” and sharing my last thoughts with everyone before we depart. This has been an intense, growing, fun, and fulfilling adventure here at ActionQuest. I’m happy to have been blessed with the opportunity to do this and meet a crazy amount of really special people. Thanks AQ! I’ll never forget it!
Staff Update Day 20
Location: West End, Tortola
This has been such an amazing trip for everyone involved. Andy, Elliott, and I have had an amazing time working with the crew of Knot Guilty. In just three short weeks, twelve complete strangers have become one close family. They are already organizing a reunion in North Carolina to get everyone back together. Brage, Ian, and McKenna are all from North Carolina and have decided that it is a central meeting place for everyone. As the program comes to a close, the goodbyes are going to be difficult, but the memories that everyone has made will last forever. No matter what, we’ve had fun each and every day together. Today was race day, which was so much fun. We raced from the Bight to a buoy in Road Town and then back to Peter Island, with our skipper Valerie at the helm. It was a huge team effort, with Casey, Sam, and Lindsey working hard to raise the mainsail. Then Mike, Annie, and Lulu unfurled the jib, with Joe and Kaki working the furling line. And that was just to get the race started. As we turned off the engine to make it a complete sailing race, all our our shipmates cycled through to tack and jibe us past other boats. Valerie loved being at the helm, but wanted to get her hands on some other things as well, and allowed Ian, Brage, and McKenna a chance to steer the vessel while underway. The race was a lot of fun for us, and I’m sure for the other boats also (except maybe the ones we left in our wake). Unfortunately we couldn’t race all day, and needed to get back to West End for the final BBQ. Now that we’re on the dock in West End, everyone is getting a little teary eyed. It’s hard to look back at the past few weeks and realize that they are ending. With a final squeeze question, we reflected on what we have learned about ourselves and what we hope to hold on to from this trip. And now we are making our last decision as a family and a team. We have decided to all chip in for a piece of the ActionQuest flag that has waved high above Knot Guilty for the past few weeks. With this we can all take a piece of our boat home and remember that amazing times we have shared.
Posted: Sat, Jul 7, 2012
Last Night On The Water
Location: The Bight, Norman Island
Today we woke up to a lazy morning with whimsically shaped pancakes. We then had a choice of wakeboarding or waterskiing. We had some fun while cleaning the whole boat. Later we headed to Road Town (the capital) where we had lunch at a local ocean side restaurant. As we left it began to sprinkle while it was sunny and 90 degrees; only in the BVI. As we were sailing Casey began to throw peanuts into the air and then catch them in his mouth. Soon the whole crew was involved with people catching peanuts from the bow. When we arrived at the Bight with our sparkly clean boat, the staff allowed the chefs Kaki and Lindsey to make a cake. After dinner we radio-ed Spindrift that had a guitar which we borrowed and have been listening to Joe play. Then it was Lifeworks which is always fun. Just another great day in the BVI with all the crew. Don’t want it to end!
Posted: Fri, Jul 6, 2012
Diving The Rhone
Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
Today we all got to sleep in an extra hour and were woken up by the sounds of the boat. We had breakfast by Salt Island and then the group split up. The advanced scuba divers (Ian and Lulu) went to dive the Rhone. The Rhone was a huge underwater shipwreck. While they dove, the rest of us went on a short walk to explore Salt Island. We climbed to the top and took lots of pictures. We then walked to the graveyard of crew members from the Rhone. After our walk we boarded the Prosecutor to take our sailing exams. It was 50 questions that we all hopefully passed; after being so well prepared by Eli! After that we all returned to the boat for lunch. We had chicken salad sandwiches, although some of us had Nutella. Once the dishes and deck were cleaned the Vegas went to dive the Rhone while the Carinas went to take their advanced sailing exam. The divers couldn’t stop raving about how cool the dive site was and all the unique sea creatures they saw. After everyone was done with their dives, we returned to Peter Island, took showers, and started dinner. Tonight is one of the few nights we have free and one of the last nights we will all be together. 🙁
Posted: Thu, Jul 5, 2012
So Much Sailing!
Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
After braving a crazy Caribbean storm last night, we woke up to a much calmer day. After eating a wonderful meal of oatmeal, we took off to take our sailing practical, in which everyone demonstrated an extraordinary talent for sailing. Once we all finished the test and hopefully passed, we stopped in West End to eat lunch and buy more Nutella. We then joined the seven other boats to have a race to Peter Island two hours away. After coming in 4th place, we docked for the night and had a great Mexican fiesta for dinner. Tonight we have a sail chat to prepare us for the written exam tomorrow. Wish us luck.