Location: Mountain Point, Virgin Gorda

So far, I’ve honestly felt quite homesick. Boat life is a drastic change from normal life, and it feels even more isolated than a normal summer camp would since we are floating on the vast ocean. Certain people in my life constantly occupy my mind, and in the beginning, it was really hard to focus on ordinary obligations because of it. However, as I get to know everyone and adjust to this lifestyle, I find myself enjoying myself more as time progresses. The homesickness is still apparent, but I’ve thankfully been able to balance it successfully with my role as a GoBeyond student.

Today I awoke to a gorgeous view of different island silhouettes in various shades of blue against the sparkling ocean, inside of my hammock in the cockpit of our Dallas Blonde. Waking up is one of my favorite parts of boat life. It’s so peaceful.

After a breakfast of oatmeal, we changed into our swimwear and gathered for an educational lecture on sea turtles. We learned about the history of the animal, their anatomy, the significance of tagging them and preserving their presence, and their overall role in the BVIs.

After our lecture, we broke into two groups and took turns attempting at catching the sea turtles in order to tag them. Many sea turtles were seen. However, despite the novice efforts, we did not successfully catch one for the tagging process. Although we were unable to catch them, we learned a lot about what makes the process of turtle catching thrive and things we needed to both individually and collectively work on in order to have a successful catch-and-tag. I personally learned to be more perceptive of my peers’ signals, and I know that my group learned about the importance of swimming delicately rather than speedily in order not to frighten the turtles away.

After returning, we changed into the appropriate clothing for walking around Spanish Town in Virgin Gorda. This was my favorite part of the day because it uncovered my new respect for the familiarity of land civilizations. As we entered town, the sight of cars driving by and a scarce amount of pedestrians walking around put such a warm smile on my face. Reflecting on this now, I’m wonderfully surprised due to the fact that I’m usually an aggressive New Yorker who rushes around the city in an ungrateful manner. If there’s one thing I’ve learned so far, it’s that boat life gives me a new perspective on ordinary things I would have never considered before this trip.

It’s only day four, but I think I’ve really opened my eyes up to the potential of this trip, and I’m finally making peace with the drastic changes that caused me to miss my life at home so desperately. I am really looking forward to the projects we’re going to work on with various island partners. I heavily seek a new sense of discipline, and I am eager to learn everything I can about the BVIs and local life on these islands, as well as reaching a potential I wasn’t aware I had.

That’s it for today.

Sending love to my family and my amazing boyfriend.