Marc Rosenberg is a professional chef and Sea Shepherd volunteer from London. Here he recounts what it’s like to jump into an off-shore campaign for the first time:
April 10th 2014 I received an email from Peter Hammarstedt asking if I’d be interested in joining the Sea Shepherd and Ocean Alliance Operation Toxic Gulf as my first Sea Shepherd campaign. Without hesitation I answered… Yes.
After five weeks of glorious, blistering sunshine, no air conditioner, and hard work, Odyssey splashed back into the water, only a few more touches needed before the campaign commenced. Finally of June 4th we set sail after a refuel at Oceanside Marina. Spirits were high as weeks of hard work paid dividends with a spectacular sunset sending us on our way.
My first watch was from midnight to 0400 (4am). My time was spent learning various aspects of a watch but the most interesting thing was using the FLIR infrared optical system to spot dolphins playing and feeding around the numerous shrimp boats that littered the waterway. The fact we could clearly see the dolphins and their blows in the pitch black night was exhilarating and also means we should easily be able to track whales at night, exciting to say the least.
With the spectacular Milky Way holding vigil, my watch came to an end and I had a great sleep, lulled by the motion of the sea. Waking up was easy, the excitement from my watch still resonating. The sky is big, the sea vast, the most beautiful blue.
Every now and again, something will catch our eye, not one of the flying fish skipping across the surface of the Gulf, but something made by man–mooring buoys and fish trap floats. We change course and move to intercept, hook the offending debris and pull it aboard. As our collection of debris grows we expect much more, the devastation of humans reaching every corner of our planet Earth.
Still very optimistic and excited for the next few months of the campaign, making sure the crew is fed and happy.