Longboat Day 5: Bringing it Home

By: Sonja, Ben, Parker—

At the disagreeable hour of 5:30 in the morning, our alarms went off and we reluctantly opened our groggy eyes. The day had finally arrived. It was time to begin our journey back to the marina, where our adventure had begun five days before.

After packing the rest of our supplies, we were on our way for the last time. Before we got going, Captain Sonia and Chrissy gave up a list of challenges to complete before reaching the marina. These challenges included: compiling a comprehensive list of all the marine life we had seen, doing a 360 degree turn in the boat, setting and furling the mizzen sail, singing a sea shanty, doing 20 power strokes, performing a man overboard drill, a moment of silence, and tying a round turn and two half hitches, all with little help from our captains.

The first leg of our journey took us from Saddlebag Island to Southeast Point, right before Guemes Channel. We knew that we would not be able to take any breaks once we were into the channel, so we had some snack breaks to gather our energy and prepare us for the hardest part of the day.

As we continued to Anacortes, the wind and the current pushed against us, but our rowers worked hard to keep us moving steadily towards our destination. Throughout the trip, moral was maintained by singing upbeat sea shanties.

Right before entering the marina, we took a moment to gather our thoughts and appreciate the events of the last four days. When we pulled into the marina dock, we all sat together to reminisce over our favorite memories of the trip and what we wanted to take away from this experience.

Although we had arrived at the dock, our work was not yet finished. We still had to clean up all of our supplies, as well as our beloved boat, the Townshend. Everyone split into three groups to take on our tasks. The boat crew completely emptied the boat and gave her a thorough wash. The “dip and dry” crew rinsed our gear with water and bleach and hung it on a clothesline to dry. The galley crew washed all our dishes with warm water and soap. After completing our individual chores, we all worked together to repack the boat in order to get it ready for the next voyage. Once all of this was done, we could finally rest and eat lunch of all the leftovers from the trip, our “roadkill” as Captain Soso said. Finally, Tim showed up with the van to take us back to the ferry and bring our adventure to an end.

It was a long journey with many different challenges we had to overcome, and through it all, we learned a lot about ourselves and how well we worked together. On this trip, we shared a lot of memories and experiences that we will remember for many years.

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