BVI: Session 2 - Rangitoto Too
Posted: Tue, Jul 28, 2015
Day 21- Final Staff Blog
Location: West End, Tortola
When they say time flies when your having fun, they sure aren’t lying. These past 20 days have just flown by. Each day is filled with new, exciting and rewarding activities, which leaves little time for reflection. Now that we are winding down it has given us time to look back on all the projects we have had the opportunity to be a part of this summer. From planting and monitoring mangroves, turtle tagging, working with the local island kids from the Jost Van Dyke Preservation Society and YEP (Youth Empowerment Project), to beach clean-ups and helping VISAR (Virgin Island Search and rescue) with some clean up, organization and dredging, the students have thrown themselves into each project with a great attitude. Allie has been a huge help throughout the past three weeks, especially with cooking and cleaning! Her French Toast is AMAZING! Lara has really grown during her time here, trying new things and overcoming fears. She used to be afraid of swimming in the ocean and now she is constantly wanting to go snorkeling to look for nurse sharks. If anything needs to get done around the boat I know we can count on Lili, she is always reading and willing to help! She also helped all the shipmates make their turks head bracelets and anklets, shes a pro with knots and braids. Caroline’s laugh was always able to brighten anyone’s day. Her constant curiosity kept things fresh. I’ve never met anyone who loves the water more then Elizabeth. She could live in the water as long as she had a snorkel and a white sandy beach to lay out on. If you needed a friend, Claire was your go-to. She was a friend to everyone and was able to make connections easily with the Jost and YEP students during projects. Adam was always there with a crazy impressions to make us all laugh. His music helped to keep morale up during long projects. Zach put his all into everything he did and was great at getting everyone excited about projects. Being a returning shipmate, Brendan was a huge help explaining the projects to shipmates. He loves sailing and you could really tell during our fun day, when he took the other shipmates out and taught them how to Pico sail! Jacob always had a positive attitude and was a great person to go to when you needed a good ear to listen. Ben taught us all new English slang terms, which we all loved. He absolutely loved turtle tagging and was quick to jump in whenever a turtle was spotted. Michael got to show off his baking skills and taught us all how to be true to ourselves. Tucker was always there with a joke timed just right. His knowledge of fish and sailing was apparent throughout the trip and you could tell it was something he was really interested in. Over the course of the trip we have gone from shipmates to family, each personality bringing something to the table, working and playing together as a cohesive unit to get projects done and enjoy our down time. We, the staff, are so proud of our shipmates and the effort they have put forth this session. We are sad to see them leave, but we are confident they are leaving with an abundance of knowledge and valuable skills that they have gained from investing themselves into each project, along with some great memories of course! They may not realize just yet how much they have done for the community during their time here in the BVI’s, but soon when they have time to reflect they will feel just as proud as we do.
Posted: Mon, Jul 27, 2015
Day 20- Goodbye Lifeworks
Location: West End, Tortola
We had a great trip, but it has come to an end. Today we climbed up Spyglass Hill one last time. We picked up two rocks on our way up. One we thought was pretty, and one we thought looked plain. We assigned each rock a piece of our personality one we would take home with us, and one we would leave on Spyglass. Then we cleaned, and cleaned and cleaned. We packed all of our stuff and got ready to go home. We had a little shore time with ActionQuest. The day was over like that. So was the trip.
Posted: Sun, Jul 26, 2015
Day 19- Peter Island, Road Town and Norman Island
We started our morning irregularly late at 8:00, and in an effort to utilize the remainder of the food on board our breakfast consisted of a smorgasbord of sausage, pancakes, biscuits, fruit, cereal, oatmeal and yogurt. Following our indulgent breakfast, both boats went ashore on Peter Island to hear the story of Conrad and his nephew Thurman. In short, Conrad was the patriarch of Peter Island prior to his death and made a lasting impact on the island by restoring the most of the island to its fishing village aesthetic. As his health began to deteriorate, Conrad could no longer look after the entire island and was forced to lease part of his home to a hotel company that would go on to use the land acquired to build a mega resort, that is still there today.We hiked around the island and we were keen to observe the drastic difference from Conrad’s village-like, easy-going half of the island to the high end mega resort on the other half. After the eye opening experience provided by our hike around Peter Island, we returned to our anchored boats for a day of relaxing, swimming, snorkeling and reminiscing over some of the greatest three weeks anyone could ask for. At about midday the skipper of Kes Kat, Elliot, dinghied over to our boat announcing that for the first time ever a Lifeworks boat would be a part of the tri-annual sail side catamaran race. He recruited two crew members, myself and Brendan D. We sailed from Peter Island to Road Town harbor to begin the race. It was a race for about 10 minutes while the pack of five ships raised there jibs and found the wind but after those ten minutes, thanks to the help of our war paint and battle cries, we had pulled so far ahead that it was a struggle to make out the boats in our wake. We sailed over the finish line a whopping 25 minutes ahead of the nearest competitor. The day was then ended with a brief swim, dinner and an evening program that brought us even closer together than living in close quarters for three weeks ever did.
Posted: Sat, Jul 25, 2015
Day 18- Cleaning Up VISAR
Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
Today was focused mainly around VISAR which stands for, Virgin Island Search and Rescue. We started by meeting Nigel, the coordinator and head medical staff for VISAR. He answered all our questions from, “How many people go out on a launch with you?” to “What was the craziest call you have ever gotten?” We cleaned the VISAR headquarters from head to toe. We scrubbed the ground with deckie brushes, organized their second and third story storage rooms, cleaned all their lockers and knick-knacks, and dredged their channels. After a long hard day of work we were rewarded with three surprises. The first surprise was that we got to stop by the Moorings dock and take real showers! The second one was that the volunteers from VISAR arranged a mock emergency with the staff of Lifeworks. They came out and acted as if one of our shipmates, Caroline, had a broken leg. After getting her into their dinghy they took turns giving us all rides in it. My group hit 40.2 Knots! It was insane! And the third and final surprise was that we got pizza for dinner! The little things really do make a difference.
Posted: Fri, Jul 24, 2015
Day 17- Mangroving With YEP
Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
We started today with porridge for breakfast at 8. After cleanup we motored up the south side of Tortola to Fat Hogs Bay and met with the Youth Empowerment Project kids and taught them how to monitor mangroves. We explained why they are important for the environment in the BVIs and replanted some of the dying mangroves with them. After that we cleaned the trash that had collected from under the mangroves. Griffin from Kes Kat and I climbed under one of the mangroves and passed all the plastic bottles and trash up to the people that were collecting them. After that we had shore time in Tortola and got to use our phones and found WiFi. We also got to eat a nice meal in a restaurant and go to the grocery store. After shore time we got back on Rangitoto Too and had a sailing race with Kes Kat. When Kes Kat got ahead they started throwing their rotten fruit on our boat and we had squished tomato all over our deck. We tried to throw rotten oranges and apples back but the wind blew them back at us. When we finally got to Great Harbor, Peter Island we anchored and had ocean showers on the deck. Today was Mexican Night and we had burritos with meat and beans and now we are cleaning up as I write this blog. We had a great day and tomorrow is gonna be even better! NO PARENTS WOOHOOOO!!!!! Just kidding, we miss you guys.