NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard NOAA Ship Rainier
July 23 – August 11, 2006
Mission: Hydrographic Survey of the Shumagin Islands
Geographical Area: Alaska
Date: July 23, 2006
Hello! I finally arrived on Kodiak Island yesterday after 3 different planes and a 4hour time change. I was met with a smile by Ensign (ENS) Jamie Wasser who brought me to the RAINIER, which is currently docked at the Coast Guard base here on Kodiak Island until our scheduled departure on Monday, July 24. As we approached the ship, ENS and morale coordinator Olivia Hauser greeted us and invited me to join a group to go out for sushi. I started jumping up and down–SUSHI!!! I can only wonder what thoughts were running through her head, as this was our very first meeting.
After quickly being shown my “home” for the next 3 weeks and meeting Jackie Hams, the other Teacher at Sea who is on the cruise, we all piled into the shuttle van to go for our sushi dinner. I immediately felt comfortable as we talked and laughed. I was also growing more and more tired as I had been up for almost 24 hours at this point.
After returning to the ship, I met my roommate Dorothea “Doe” Mackey, one of the stewards who works in the kitchen. I unpacked and had a tour of the vessel. Initially I was a little overwhelmed by all the twists and turns and stairs, but after exploring for a bit, I’m getting more comfortable with the maze. Since we’re not scheduled to leave here for another day, I’ve had some time to get acclimated and talk with many of the crew. So far the crewmembers I’ve met have been very friendly, informative, and helpful. There are some very interesting personalities on board. •
Being a rather tall individual, the close quarters will take a little getting used to. I have the top bunk in my stateroom. I usually like the top bunk, however, this one will take some getting used to. The ceiling is about 2 feet above the bed, which makes for quite a claustrophobic experience. It took me about 10 minutes to get down from the bunk this morning since I couldn’t sit up and I kept hitting my head on the ceiling. My apologies to Doe if I woke her with all of the ruckus.