Good evening, Today was the first—and well-earned—full day of rest for Island School Summer Term students. After almost 10 days of running, swimming, run-swimming, SCUBA diving, free diving, local exploration, explorative road trips, night classes, and dish crew—in other words, after exhaustion beyond belief—we were spared from the usual 6:30 AM morning deadline and were instead allowed to sleep in as long as necessary. The irony of today is that few people wanted to totally rest on their first day of rest; the majority of students spent most of the day off campus, only returning when asked to do so. Many diligently began the paper due to be submitted by 10:30 tonight. A few brave souls ran in the morning on the first day when there was no group exercise, optional or otherwise.

Students ascending after a dive

Beautiful day in EleutheraThe most significant of the few mandatory activities of the day was two hours of querencia, the time students must spend completely alone and reflecting on themselves in a place of their choosing within the boundaries set by the Island School. Some stormed beaches near campus; others secluded themselves in hammocks overlooking the sea; but almost everyone returned to the spot they had chosen beforehand to develop a sense of intimacy with the land we can now spend time with on our own terms.

Tonight we transition together into the next part of the term with a presentation on the invasive lionfish species; this is our last activity as a whole group before we are split once more. Our first week of classes begins tomorrow, and we have been rearranged from our original “Fritter” and “Zissou” groups into new groups of people who we know by face and name, yet not as well as those we have developed close friendships with over the past 10 days. As we were when we began the term, we are only eager to delve into new relationships as we cross into the next phase of our experience here.

Your caciques of the day,

Maya Iskandarani and Chase Goodwyn