Sail training diary – Day 5 – Sailing with Parents and Graduation

Well this is starting to sound redundant but it was another perfect day for sailing. The wind was up a little more than Day 4 which added a little more challenge to line handling and the trainees were up to it.

After the Thursday day sail, there was an overnight expedition. Six trainees got the opportunity to spend the night aboard and work like crew. The Sloop Providence anchored in Potter’s Cove and from all reports it was a great experience. Even being woken in the middle of the night to stand anchor watch was managed with enthusiasm. The vessel returned to the dock on Friday morning and the shore bound trainees joined at 10:00 am.

Day 4’s challenge needed to be completed so ASTA Intern Heather organized a line naming contest and all of the professional crew. A line would be read out and the first player that grabbed it would win a point. The first team to 10 won. The trainees got stumped by the trickery of crew member Jody when he called out the “waterline.” It also took a good 10 minutes for one of the teams to figure out how to tie a bowline. All in all, the trainees recollection of line locations was surprisingly poor considering how well they sailed on Day 3. It’s funny that each winning has chosen scrubbing the deck rather than planning the voyage. Physical activities trumps intellectual activity which is not a surprise for this age group

Day 5 - teamwork

Today was parent day and we had six aboard which was great. The trainees seized the opportunity to show their stuff with setting the sails. This was the best demonstration of their team work yet.

We sailed down under the Newport Bridge and then tacked back to Fort Adams. It was another beautiful day for sailing. With slightly stiffer winds the line handling became a bit more of a challenge and the Sloop Providence hit her fastest speed all week.

Day 5 - teamwork 2

Today was also graduation day and we handed out 12 certificates of completion of the Providence Maritime Heritage Foundation’s Sail Training Program One. About half of the first week participants will be returning and everyone elected a senior watch leader for all of next week. This will be in addition to and senior of the port and starboard watch leaders. We will continue to try to advance responsibility and initiative through the peer leadership model.

Day 5 - graduation

It was a great week with a fabulous group of kids. They came a long way in 5 days and the journey next week will allow some of them to continue their learning about sailing and themselves. It’s a great sea story. Stay tuned.

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Peter A. Mello

Husband, father, son. Lifelong mariner, student of leadership, photographer. Professional creative placemaker.

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