TTFN, Port Fourchon.

With great joy, I announce that today is the day we will be leaving Fourchon.

With some sadness, but more laughter, I announce that that is just about all I remember.

Leaving was so much a highlight of the day, that I don’t even know what else went on. I clearly remember spending a majority of the day working to complete homework for my online class. It took awhile because there were a lot of steps to complete and various poems to read and contrast. It doesn’t help when you’re being harassed by people like Bailey and Ian — it’s distracting. But, what’s a sail without harassment? (Right, Kait?)

Other notes: Jane made no-bake cookies, but I waited too long to really want one and then they were gone.

As soon as John, Sandy, Johnny, and Matt got back we were rushing around getting ready to go. Matt showed Sho-ping, Jane, and I how to take a water sample. It was surprisingly more complicated than I expected. And by that, I mean that you have one extra step, which is to put hydrochloric acid (HCl) into the bottles before you put water in there. I climbed up onto the pilot house not long after that and was sitting with Johnny. We saw some dolphins actually jumping out of the water and using their tails to slap at the surface — they were trying to stun fish. We watched them get closer and realized, Hey! They’re coming over to the boat!

Moved as fast as I could down from the pilothouse to the bow to see 3 or 4 dolphins riding along the bow. They were zooming in and out from underneath and then they’d come up to the surface for air. I looked at Johnny and shouted, “Dolphin samples!” and he must have been thinking the same thing because he was moving pretty quickly to get back to the pilothouse to get a harness/life-vest. He came back with it and a petri dish. As he was tying the harness to the side of the boat, I was pitching my case about my being smaller and lighter weight, so I should go over to try and take the samples. Obviously, that didn’t work. Soon enough, Johnny was hanging over the side and reaching out to try and capture the water coming up when the dolphins breathed.

 

Come here, Flipper.

 

The dolphins stayed underneath the boat throughout the channel, with there being one to three dolphins there at any given time. It was pretty amazing to have them so close. They’d turn on their sides and look up at us in the bow curiously. We were even able to get two samples, which was pretty awesome.

It was nutty to be back out in the port and see all of the platforms again. How there’s any marine life in the area is astounding.

The sunset was pretty impressive.

It wasn’t long before I was in bed. I had prepped and taken a Dremamine, just in case, so I was pretty drowsy. I didn’t think I’d be sick since I wasn’t on the last leg, but I’d prefer to have taken it than be really sorry. The boat wasn’t rocking as much as it was the first night of the last leg. Either that, or I’m slowly becoming accustomed to it. Before that, though, I was sitting in the pilot house on helm watch with Bailey. I was in the captain’s chair, just staring off at the dashboard of levels and measurements. I noticed one that was all the way to the right, but didn’t think anything of it. That was until Bailey came over, took a look at it, and bolted downstairs. Ruh roh. Captain Bob came up, threw on the noise-canceling headphones he has, and turned off the engine. Stupid engine, we just got you fixed and you’re overheating again. He seemed to have fixed the problem when he came back up, though. Now, only if we can get a working oven again.

I leave you with this – a crew photo of all of us staring into the sun. Note that I seem especially short with some of the tallest people surrounding me.

Annnd the one soon after when we realized the camera took 10 photos in a row. Oh, Ian. Classic.

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