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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Reflections on Approaching week Eight

Sam Sielen
Photographer, Bob Barker

Sam Sielen Approaching week eight since we left the port in Hobart, Tasmania, I can already say that this campaign is a success!  We found most of the whaling fleet as soon as they arrived in the Southern Ocean – staying with them and giving the amazing mammals of the sea a chance at life.  Seeing many whales, in addition to dolphins, seals, penguins, albatrosses, and petrels, I am reminded not only of why we are all here, but also of how beautiful and diverse this planet is.

To maintain earth's biodiversity, I believe we must practice conservation in all forms.  Being vegan for several years, advocating bicycles instead of automobiles, and buying as little plastic as possible are just a few of the ways I worked to conserve and protect this planet before working with Sea Shepherd. When I arrived to the Bob Barker this past June, I was stoked to meet such like-minded people on the crew.  Every meal that is served here on the Bob is vegan, not to mention incredibly delicious and nutritious.

With a background in film and photo, I have been able to utilize my skills as one of the campaign’s photographers, though I have been more than happy to step in and help with deck work and plumbing. Taking on several roles aboard the Bob in nothing unusual, as all crewmembers willingly help in multiple areas of the ship.

While the crew here has become like family to me, I still cannot help but miss my family and friends back in the states, whom have supported me since the very beginning. I understand how it can be difficult for family members back home to have their loved ones away for so long, as my girlfriend was part of the crew last year for Operation Waltzing Matilda while I had to stay behind to fulfil other obligations. Fortunately, we are able to be together aboard the Bob during this present campaign. I am grateful not only to those close to me who have provided support and backing, but also to all those around the world that have done so much to support Sea Shepherd in becoming such a successful and strong organization – thank you!