Swing low

September 22nd.

Wednesday. It never fails that hump day seems to drag on. I don’t remember what time I woke up, but it wasn’t in time for a sunrise and it wasn’t in time to see the dolphins chasing fish next to the boat. My cabin is so cold and so dark that I have a tendency to sleep until about 9am or so. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not complaining. I like feeling as though I’m sleeping in a cave. It’s just not very conducive to getting up at any time before 9. It just doesn’t assist that biological clock whatsoever.

I took the hour before Pam was going to show up again to finish some more coursework. At 10:30am, she was back with the white van to pick up the crew to go back over to Southern Miss and the Gulf Coast Research lab. Dr. Wise, Johnny’s dad (and Sandy’s husband, for that matter), was giving a presentation about the voyage. I feel that I was relatively well prepared about what to expect prior to coming, but it helped to break down the project into very understanding pieces. Plus, Dr. Wise was an engaging presenter, which helped a great deal. We ate lunch after and I again tried the sweet tea. Stupid, I know, because I just ended up pouring it out again.

I don’t even know what time it was when we got back to the boat, but it was so much earlier than I realized. GCRL had spoken with Dr. Wise about working to collect samples of water from dolphin blows and gave us several materials that we would need to accomplish things (petri dishes and the sort). Our task was to figure out how to accomplish that. Dolphins often ride the water coming off the bow of the boat and you can come relatively close to touching them even when standing on deck. The thought was, how to we get someone down close enough to capture a sample of the dolphin blow? Really, I think the picture sums up our response without my having to do much explaining.

Tiana swings low in the dolphin seat.

Kate and Steve reach out to the water.

The rest of the night consisted of homework and boat work. It ended up being a pretty late night for everyone. Ian, Bailey, and Steve didn’t return from exploring all that Biloxi has to offer (not much) until around midnight or maybe 1am. Tiana was up and so was I. We had joined them for a bit, but came back to the boat early. I spent some time talking to Steve in the kitchen about his night and life. Turns out he just published his first book! (nice plug, just for you Steve.) Check it out, it’s called: Publish this book! by Stephen Markley



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