Alrighty! So I’ve been living and working in the Bahamas for the past month and so far it’s been a blast! A few months ago a charter boat named Beacon Won pulled into the anchorage at Manjack on the eve of a full moon party. My dad got to know the Captain, Bruce, and relayed some of his stories to me at which point I decided to shoot him an email and ask if they were looking to fill a crewing position for the summer. Luckily, the captain’s wife, Sheila, got back to me right away and asked if I could come for the second half of the summer season.
So, here I am. I had no idea what I was getting into when I signed up to work on Beacon, but life on board is pretty awesome. There are four crew members in total, plus the captain and his wife. The other crew members are great; Mark, 19, recently graduated from college and is the first mate, Lee, also 19, is from the Bahamas and one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, and Hannah, 21, has worked on Beacon for two summers and is from Texas. Gah, I love them all!
Every week we take a new charter group from Nassau to the Exumas where we do everything from kayaking to swimming with sharks. For the most part the groups we take out are amazing! It’s really cool how close you can get to people in such a short amount of time. By the time Saturday rolls around and it’s time for a group to go home goodbyes get pretty difficult! Since I’ve been onboard we’ve had groups from South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia.
Our workday is always pretty jam-packed, starting the moment we wake up at 7:30am and ending when we finally get into bed around 10pm. Our responsibilities include making and setting up three meals a day, keeping the boat clean (you would not believe how quickly the deck and galley floors get dirty), getting the anchor up and down (no windlass), taking watches at the helm on longer passages, emptying and keeping the heads (bathrooms) clean, and plenty of other chores. We also get to do most of the fun stuff with the groups like snorkeling, jumping off the rigging, swimming with sharks, feeding iguanas and pigs, diving old plane wrecks, etc.
The weather in the Bahamas during the summer is extremely hot and humid and since I’m always on a boat it’s hard to escape the sun. I feel like I drink a couple gallons of water every day and am still dehydrated! I’m super tan though so I guess ya win some, ya lose some!
I only have three more weeks left and can already tell that it’s going to be hard to adjust to real life again after this whole year of traveling. It’s crazy for me to think that just a year ago I was wandering around Europe with two friends, a backpack, and no idea what the next twelve months had in store for me!