As we headed into the first few days of Summer Term many of us weren’t sure what to expect. However, now that we have spent a bit of time here we have learned to expect the unexpected. Through many sessions of getting to know the island, the people, and what this overall experience will bring we students have started to settle in and become a community. Everyone here at the Island School comes from different places and backgrounds, but we all seem to have common connections and have already begun to build strong relationships with one another.
The first task we students had to complete individually and as a whole was our Swim Test at Triangle Cut right on campus. Not only is the Swim Test required for our Scuba Certification but also it is necessary if we want to explore the campus and the rest of the island. The test begun with Liz yelling “BANANAS!” which is synonymous here with “GO!”. We all hopped in (with a buddy of course) and began the test. Faculty lined the course cheering us on throughout the test keeping our spirits high and our heads above water. While some students finished what seemed like instantaneously others were slow and steady and at the end of the day everyone passed! No matter where you were in the final lineup when you stepped out of the water you received an enthusiastic congratulations and a high five from each faculty member. Then came the second part of the test. We were to tread water for 10 minutes. Sounds simple enough, right? Little did we know we were to tread water inhabited by jellyfish for 10 minutes. 50 students kicking in water trying to keep our bodies afloat lead to pretty angry jellyfish who happened to be resting on the floor of Triangle Cut. The stings were mild yet constant and we all fought through them for the entirety of the test. Through getting to know one another, singing, dancing even, and most of all trying to get our minds off of the jellyfish we bonded as a whole. Don’t worry, we all made it out alive. Yes, with a few stings, but also closer as a community.
With each passing day our mental and physical limits are challenged, our smiles are brighter, and our hearts fuller. We know already, just in the few days we have been here, that this will be one unforgettable summer leaving us with friends and memories that will last a lifetime.
Your first Caciques,
Maggie and Matthew