August 18, 2007
Latitude: 36° 32.32' N
Greetings! Today awoke at 0300 (3AM) to start the day. We did an early morning cast and besides the usual plankton we also caught jellyfish approximately 4 inches in diameter and a small fish. The seas have calmed down and it is less rocky now and stomachs are feeling much better. Earlier today we were greeted and escorted by approximately 50 Bottlenose Dolphins, which jumped and played along the ship. We've finished our southern track line and are now heading back to Woods Hole - sampling along the way. One interesting visitor is a warbler that flew on to the deck and has been flying around all day. I also got a chance to speak to the Executive Officer - Jeff Taylor. Jeff, whose career started in the US Air Force as a medical technician, worked full-time and attended school at the University of South Florida and after receiving his degree in Biology met some NOAA officers that inspired him to work for NOAA. Jeff has been a NOAA Corp officer for seven years and states they are the best years of his life. Jeff, has been an Executive Officer for two years and is acting Commanding Officer on this cruise in place of the absent Commanding Officer. Jeff, states that the best part of his job is being on the water - especially with beautiful days that we have on the sea. The only draw back is the time away from family, but Jeff looks forward to a land assignment in Hawaii for the next three years and his family will accompany him.