Location: The middle of the Atlantic
This is the longest stretch between ports, from Brazil to Ghana. So I was going to get cabin fever now would be the time, but so far so good! The past few days were very routine, rotating from A day to B day. B day I have consumer behavior at 12:15 and thats it so the morning and afternoon I usually spend between laying out by the pool and using the gym or catching up on work. A days I have global studies at 9:20, international marketing at 12:15, and travel writing at 4:15. Rough schedule huh? I’m enjoying my classes for the most part. Global Studies is not what I expected and there is a lot more reading than I have had to do in a long time. Rumor has it the teachers were told to make classes harder in an effort to make sure that Semester at Sea keeps a strong academic reputation. Interesting…
Anyhow, they don’t make us suffer through classes for too many days in a row. Last night we had the opening ceremonies for Sea Olympics! There are I think 8 seas, each one is something different. Arabian, Baltic, Bearing, Caribbean, etc. and each time is associated with a color. I’m in the Arabian Sea and our color is black. we met in our hallways before the procession into the union where the “ceremony” was held. Everyone was dressed in black head to toe and super enthusiastic about the event. Everyone got each other pumped up as a team and it was definitely a bonding experience for our hallway. Last night we presented our banner and our chant to the rest of the Seas and came in third with our chant. Unfortunately we didn’t place in the banner competition, but I still stand by ours because it was definitely the most official looking. Karissa and I along with a group of 6 or 7 others worked on the chant and it went over great. There is a guy in our group who does a really good Obama impression so he stood up and made a little speech and then said that the Arabian Sea was the best. Someone from our team called out “WHAT DID YOU SAY?” and the rest was a call and response that went like this:
I SAID FROM EAST TO WEST
THE ARABIAN SEA’S THE BEST
REPPIN OUR SEA IN BLACK
WERE READY TO ATTACK
YES WE CAN YES WE CAN YES WE CAN etc.
And then at the very end the Obama impersonator said “ Im Barrack Obama and I approve this message”
The next day were the actual “Olympics” which started at 1 pm. There were activities going on throughout the day such as a trivia match, basketball, three legged race, synchronized swimming, volleyball, dress your RA (we had to dress our RA like a hippie), and others. The day went by like a blur. As a member of the activities committee, I’m trying to figure out a way to make sea Olympics more like color wars at camp (color wars went on throughout a camp session) because everyone really enjoyed the activities so I think it would be good to try and have different games or competitions throughout the semester. We didn’t come in last place so the motto we adopted is that if you didn’t lose you’re a winner.
I also met my extended family during the nine days at sea. The head of our family is named Judith and she is a lifelong learner who did semester at sea as a student in the 70’s. she has two kids in there thirties and a one year old grandchild, and her husband passed away a few months ago and she thought now would be the right time to do semester at sea again. There are three other kids in my family; One girl who goes to Michigan, another girl who goes to Charleston, and a boy who got to Point Loma in San Diego. We had our official dinner together that was organized by the ship and then the night before we arrived in Ghana Judith treated us to dinner on the pool deck which is more like a snack bar/grill and tomorrow (the day after we leave Ghana) we will be having dinner with her again in the main dining area. Signing up to do the extended family was a really good way to meet a few new people in a much different way than we would normally get to know people so im really glad that I did it and cannot wait to continue to get to know my “family”.