It was an early start for six A-level students from Lipson Co-operative Academy. We departed by coach at 2 am to reach Bristol airport for a (much delayed) flight to Dublin, where we boarded the Pelican of London at midday.
Lunch, moving into our cabins, training and safety drills, briefings, dinner… you’d think we deserved to sleep now, but no, ‘ship first’ and through the night, the sail trainees took on the harbour watches with their new ship mates from Cumbria and Germany.
This morning, more sail training, briefings and lunch, then the Pilot appeared and we were off down the Liffey and out into the Irish Sea towards the Scottish isles.
Seabirds are already a point of discussion and I get the identification books and binoculars ready for more. Guillemot, fulmar and gannet, kittiwake, cormorant and razorbill…the odd tern and gull. No doubt, we’ll get better at identifying them over the next weeks.
15:30 and we’re setting some fore-and-aft sails. The motion of the ship changes and the excitement among voyage crew is great.
Smiles all around!