BVI: Session 1 - La Bella Vita

Posted: Tue, Jul 5, 2016

Staff Update Day 21

Location: West End, Tortola
Author: Carolyn, Ashley, and Fritz
As program comes to a close, we take time to reflect on all the amazing things we’ve done and learned. Hannah Mo led us to victory on our first two races (among the monohulls) She kept everyone focused and busy. Maisie did an awesome job working the main sheet and keeping everyone on the high side. During our diving experiences, Lily did so excellent staying neutrally buoyant and looking natural in the water. Nick and Ally have not only mastered the art of making pancakes, but also sharing their advanced knowledge sailing with the crew. Oliver has been an overall awesome hand aboard, motivating everyone into action. Avery has these amazing moments of energy where she gets everyone on task and amped for whatever we are about to do. Neil has been giving everyone wise words to live by day-in and day-out. Lyle does such a good job catching lines and tying cleat knots. Paulina has really perfected helming while under sail, often accompanied by commands to other crew in Russian accents. Hannah Tate serenades us with her ukulele and started teaching some of us the cards to Imagine by the Beatles. Gabriel found his skipper’s voice and helps us with raising sail and trimming them. As we wrap up the trip, and the turtle count rounds to a surprising 11, everyone is sad to pack up and leave. We are all so thankful for our amazing shipmates and fun times we’ve had these past 21 days. They came as teenagers from all over, on day 21 they leave as family. Can’t wait to hear about their future adventures – maybe see them out on or under the water again someday.

Posted: Mon, Jul 4, 2016

Day 20- Last Day, Best Day

Location: West End, Tortola
Author: Avery S.
I started off the day by going to a kipper’s meeting for the final race. We dominated and got first place and all of us got our medals. We motored to West End while doing a whole boat cleanup. We will soon go on shore to eat, then we will shower for our final BBQ night together. In the morning we will say goodbye and hop on our flights.

Posted: Sun, Jul 3, 2016

Day 19- Lunch At The Road

Location: The Bight, Norman Island
Author: Neil G.
Today was a great day. We woke up at 6am in order to prepare some delicious pancakes. While we were having our awesome pancakes, we went on our last rotation of watersports. It was so cool to see how much we had all improved compared to our first times. After that, we set sail for the capital and biggest town that we will have visited in the BVI. There we had lunch at a restaurant called Village Cay. We all decided to eat there as a group, and despite it taking a long time, we all enjoyed it. Fro there we set sail to the Bight, one of the first places we moored at originally. The voyage was fun as we dealt with an Oreo extortion scheme. One thing that was memorable was how much better we got at sailing. Overall, it was a very fun day despite being frustrated by moments of melancholy about leaving.

Posted: Sat, Jul 2, 2016

Day 18- We Dove The Rhone!

Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
Author: Lily M.
Today was definitely an exciting day. We started the day by motoring over to Salt Island where we dove the Rhone! It was our first dive as certified open water divers, which was very exciting. During our dive, we saw amazing sea life, including a huge stingray! We also got to swim through the stern of the sunken boat, which was an incredible experience. After our dive and some Ramen for lunch, we went on a hike through Salt Island and got to see several salt flats. It was so beautiful at the top of the island so we hung out there for a bit, exploring and enjoying the view. We then sailed back to Great Harbor where we will spend the night, and now I’m super excited for breakfast for dinner!

Posted: Fri, Jul 1, 2016

Day 17- Race Day!!

Location: Great Harbor, Peter Island
What an eventful day; and a very memorable one at that. We had our very first race day! We woke up bright and early and filled our body with a nutritious breakfast of oatmeal, yogurt and cereal. Shortly afterwards, I had a skipper’s meeting. At the skipper’s meeting, we discussed where we would start and end the race and how we would start the race. We all started in a line with our mainsails hoisted. Jake counted down the start over the VHF and as soon as he said go, we started unfurling our jib. We were all cheering and hyped up about the first race. We had started out very strong and held a steady lead. We had our very own race day music playlist and we were all smiles! We even made up our own cheer. It goes like this: “I say Bella, you say Vita” Bella-Vita: Bella-Vita, and we would all cheer super loud. We started to near the finish line and we had a catamaran and another monohull closing in. With our positive energy, loud cheering, and happy vibes we won the first race! It was very exciting! We were all thrilled! Our race started at Sandy Spit and ended at Soper’s Hole in West End. We arrived in West End and docked. Once again, we were out of water, so we needed more. We ate lunch in West End and had some shore time. The fun wasn’t over yet!! We had another race!! I had a second skipper’s meeting and discussed the second race. This race would be more challenging than the first because we had to tack upwind, rather than sail on a beam reach the whole time like we did the first race. We had a good start and were yet again full of energy and super stoked for another race. We held a pretty good position the whole race; working together as a team, we completed multiple very nice tacks. Working well together was a prime factor for our racing success. We placed second in the second race, right behind a catamaran. We were the first monohull. Our wonderful day was closing up with a very yummy dinner of tacos! Mexican Night is definitely Bella Vita’s favorite dinner! We are starting dinner clean up soon so we can get ready for our 5th and final sail chat. It’s an understatement to say we had such a fun exciting day. It was truly fantastic. So excited for tomorrow, not sure if it can beat today though! 🙂

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