It’s April, warm by spring standards, but temps are still in the mid-50s. It’s sunny, of course, and the flags are flying from the waterfront flagpole. The land has gotten warm enough to generate a sea breeze and the boats are shifting to the southwest as the gentle 5-7 knots comes in. Everyone is out. The TABOR BOY crew is heading out to the schooner in the whaleboat followed by the officers in the launch. The crew shells are launching from the crew dock, and the sails are rising and crisply flapping in the breeze on the Lillard dock. The harbor is empty of other boats this time of year and the whole place belongs to us.
Tabor's location allows our students to do so much during the day. Marine classes can run out to the marsh to collect samples to investigate. The nautical science class can sail the whaleboat in a 50-minute period. The Level-1 class can conduct powerboat tests with ease. The students who crew TABOR BOY, row crew, or sail are not wasting time driving from campus to the practice. When it is warmer, our students can swim--at sunrise, or sunset, or after practice. Or students can go kayaking for an hour on a Sunday afternoon to get away from their studies for a bit. The sea is a living, breathing example of nature. Sometimes, it is calm, sometimes it is angry, but always it is mesmerizing. Our students get to live with and respect the ocean every day--in some cases just feet from their dorm room. That doesn't happen at any other school.
It’s like having 25 brothers, some older and some younger. You learn to live with others’ habits, to problem solve, and to negotiate. But, you make great friends and have fantastic life experiences. Most graduates have as many fond memories from the dorm or their afterschool activities as they do from their classes.
Show up ready for something new. Show up with a limited number of things (don't over clutter your room). Get involved. Play a fall sport your first season on campus even if you have never played that sport before. Don't be afraid to fail.
There are too many to recall, but they all center on a school wide event - Holderness Day, play-offs, the musical, etc. Maybe coaching a home game in front of hundreds of fans in Stone Gym and the place is rocking.
The waterfront. I had two really good job offers coming out of college, but the chance to be part of the waterfront program was one of the deciding factors. I was going to do this job for two years, three years tops, before getting a "real job." Twenty-eight years later, I could not find a profession that is more rewarding. And now I run the waterfront that drew me here so long ago. That is a special treat.
It has become All-A-Taut-O, everything "ship shape." If you don't spend the time and energy being organized and in control, you leave your life in the hands of fate and others. I want to control my own destiny, so I make sure that I do!