Round the southernmost tip off Africa.
We’ve won, we’ve lost, we’ve learnt, we’ve discovered.
Withstood swells and currents worthy of their reputation.
Upon seemingly a lone royal blue spec heaving in the middle of the Cape Cauldron,
Less a lonely storm petrel to be seen, fluorescent pyrosome, light-addicted squid
The dark moonless nights beam, reminder that somewhere SWOT is circling, watching.
We have gathered in our watches, tirelessly, happily for the last 27 days, tight bonds, teamwork, each sharp mind and supporting hand, essential to the goal – excellent science created kindly.
We come now to a peaceful finale, after a spin in the world’s most energetic curve of the ocean. Humbled and excited with anticipation for the next chapter of the story – figuring out what our observations mean and how the puzzle pieces fit together. We, on the ship and those who joined as the land-based team, are now grappled together for the next years.
A seagull squawks. The silhouette of Table Mountain, a cloud in the distant horizon. We inch closer at 3 knots as the sun sets deep oranges and reds. The last wireflyer transect profiling through the night.