Galapagos Crossing – Day 4

Almost a full moon this evening as we close in on the equator.  According to Joe and Ruth, the two “shellbacks” on our boat, the rest of us are “polliwogs” and must make an offering to Neptune when we cross the equator by sea.

If accepted, we too will become shellbacks and can act as Neptune’s representatives for future polliwog initiations.

According to our shellbacks, Neptune also requires that we design costumes for ourselves and ear swimsuits under our costumes but they have promised that no one will be thrown in the sea.

Cobin immediately started designing his costume and the rest of us have slowly caught up.  We now have a group costume plan that will be revealed to you, the shellbacks, and Neptune in the next couple of days.

We took a day off school but that doesn’t mean the learning stopped!  At the mention of Neptune, both girls ran to get books.  Marin came back with “Greek Mythology” and Tully came back with “Space.”  Marin informed is that Neptune is the Roman god of the sea and we learned that the planet Neptune has very heavy moons and might rain diamonds (according to Cobin).

And Cobin worked on a homemade van der Graffe generator (sp?) but is having some issues getting it to generate the static electricity so more fine tuning needed.

Most of the adults and Cobin did a circuit workout before a lovely pasta and salad dinner prepared by Ruth.  Doing exercises on a moving boat is akin to doing them on a Bosu ball – definitely works on your balance!

Joe spent his time on the evening radio call, trying to help Rubicon IV troubleshoot their battery issues.  Unfortunately, it sounds like they may be turning around and heading back to Panama where they have better access to parts than in the Galapagos.

We have had all the sails out today – yellow spinnaker, rainbow spinnaker, gennaker, and now main and jib.  We have sometimes had the motor on along with the sails o power through dead spots.  We normally prefer to sail as much as we can but the allure of time in the Galapagos has us sacrificing sailing time for speed.

The days are passing surprisingly quickly – we had a nice history of India from Sunil and Swagata this afternoon- Swagata got the chance to make up answers for us for a change!

We also had a business meeting at sea – Swagata is an architect, helping us design a new location for our climbing gym business.  Ruth said she should charge extra for traveling to meet a client but I think maybe we should get a discount for providing such inspiring surroundings!

we saw a turtle this morning.  I first thought it was some trash item but its curved brown back soon sprouted a head and flippers and we all got to see that it was not a log.  Marin saved a bird that stunned itself on the sail and we had another couple of birds flying circles next to the boat for several hours, alternately fishing and squabbling with each other.  The spider we captured yesterday, Fred, escaped almost immediately.  I assume he’s still with us, just not as available to be studied.

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