Throughout scouting youth are told that they are learning lifelong skills that will both better them as individuals and citizens to the world, nation, and community. From August 2 to August 5 I participated in a training cruise aboard the Tall Ship Mystic Whaler that was sponsored by Ship 110, my ship.
During this time aboard the 110 foot schooner I learned skills relating to the fields of piloting, charting, weather, first aid, rules of the road, the compass, aids to navigation, and communication. Also, while aboard I participated in watches in which my crew (DELTA) and I got to take control of the ship by conducting various sailing maneuvers, taking turns at the helm, climbing the rigging and performing various chores that the crew would usually conduct. In total, we had 20 Sea Scouts aboard from a number of different ships that were all separated into five crews of four. Each crew had an adult leader and took part in all of the stations provided throughout the four-day trip. By participating in all of these activities we all earned the Qualified Seaman Award and met a lot of new friends.
The feedback from the trip was that nobody wanted to leave. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed meeting new people and sailing on a new ship. However, the major importance of the trip was the skills that were learned. In fact, I am staying on the ship until August 26 to be a part of the crew and to further my knowledge about schooners. Yet, I quickly felt right at home because of what I had learned the four days before and from the skills I have acquired from being a Sea Scout the past 14 months. All of the passengers that came aboard were so impressed to see that a 16 year old could know so much about sailing and I gave all the thanks back to Sea Scouts and the training that I received from it, especially the training cruise aboard my summer home, the Mystic Whaler.
So, to all Sea Scouts, youth and elder, the skills we learn through scouting and from each other really do help us better ourselves and the environment around us because we never really know where we are going to end up; and when we get there we have to be prepared. With thanks to all the people that made the cruise possible and the crew of the Mystic Whaler.
I wish everyone fair winds and following seas.