One of this year’s Education Interns, Robert Charde, shared this journal entry after his summer’s work:
I would like to say I’m pretty familiar with Clearwater. I’ve spent a good chunk of time working on her and an even greater chunk of time thinking about coming back. The aspect that means the most to me, the thing that most draws me to the long days and hot nights, is the people. I have met some amazing and talented people during my times working, and I only hope that I meet more. I must admit, however, that a selfish part of me has assumed that I am the only one who feels the sort of connection to this boat that I do.
This time around, however, I discovered something that – while not earth-shattering – was certainly humanizing. In the office and in the heads, I came upon old journals. They were dated as far back as the mid-‘80s, and they contained entries from past crew and volunteers. These were fascinating as historical documents of what was going on with Clearwater at the time they were written. But there was more.
I found a lot of entries that were thank-you notes to the boat. People would write about how much fun they had, and how sailing with Clearwater affected them. The notes ranged from people simply saying they had a fun week, to people opening up about how they had grown as individuals and made lasting connections with others. The common string that tied all the entries together was that no one regretted their time on board.
Dear Clearwater, Thank you for everything. — Robert Charde.