November 30, 2007
This morning came with it the first rainy day I have seen since I left Florida four weeks ago. I also realized that I am really going back to the "real world". Cell phones, driving my car, not climbing up to the top bunk to sleep, and back to work... Through this experience I have learned a little about what I "really" need and what I have as "comforts" back on land. The science team cleared out early this morning for a final meeting to wrap-up the four month cruise. I am waiting for my flight back to Tampa and should be sleeping in my own bed tonight. I am so thankful for the opportunity I have had though the ARMADA Project and NOAA for being able to journey in the Pacific for 26 days!
I have come away from this trip with so many things- tons of science that has increased my knowledge of marine science; new contacts with people in the field with whom I can ask my million questions as they arise; lots of ideas for fun, interactive, and hands-on activities that I can bring back to my school and community; and an insight into the lives of crew aboard a research vessel and the sacrifices they make to have successful science programs carried out on board.
I would like to thank everyone involved with coordinating the ARMADA Project for all the hard work and effort it takes for all of us fortunate enough to have been a part of such a rewarding experience! I would like to thank also the crew of the McArthur II for making my stay unforgettable and of course, all the science experts I worked with for the month from the Southwest Fisheries Science Center. I am hoping I will have the pleasure of working with you again in the future!