We’re approaching the end of our expedition and we’re still doing ROV dives and taking grabs, and searching for a shipwreck to snorkel around – we haven't managed to find any since Claver Bank in Norway! The last days of an expedition always go by so quickly but we’re working hard to get all the work we planned done in time.
We’re stuck in Denmark unable to work in the waters because of the weather conditions; waves 6 metres high, 35-knot winds mean that we couldn’t do any dives with the ROV or snorkel. So, days like that when that happens are used to carry out maintenance work and tweaking all our equipment so that when the weather improves we can be 100% ready to work. It’s a real shame to be stuck here unable to work properly but I guess that is the North Sea for you: you have to adapt to the weather here.
Only a few days remain on board the Ranger. On the twenty-third of this month I’ll finish with the campaign in Malta to go and join the campaign in the North Sea. Today Aaron has arrived, our new colleague who will take on the responsibility for diving on board. The professionalism and eagerness to work make the handover quick and easy.
All that’s left is for me is to say goodbye to this diary that I am writing now, voluntarily and under no pressure from the campaigner, and to wish all the best to the colleagues with whom I’ve shared so many things during these two months.
The good thing about there being so many of us on-board here is that everyone is a specialist in something, so you get the chance to learn a great deal of things: like sailing, controlling the ROV, mechanics, marine biology, photography, diving and cooking. On-board the Ranger you never stop learning!
There are 14 of us on-board here in Gozo so it’s important to have a moment to ourselves to unwind. Most of the crew here does that by doing some kind of sport. When we sleep at port, we run and/or swim before the working day starts. And if there’s a spare moment when we’re out sailing or at-sea we do workouts using the big rubber bands (you can do so many different exercises with them!). These are just a couple of ways we stay in shape and relax during our time on the expedition.