On a sailor’s first crossing of the equator, it is imperative that they be initiated properly; for many, this is a long-awaited badge of honor. In the line crossing ceremony, one goes from being a lowly pollywog to a respected shellback, welcomed by King Neptune himself. We crossed the equator at 0900 on a glassy, beautiful morning and toasted with champagne on the bow.

Then came the initiation. King Neptune, Queen Tethys, and their gang of rapscallion pirates collected the pollywogs and gave them a proper initiation on the sun deck, officially welcoming them to the northern hemisphere.

In true maritime tradition, the details of the ceremony must not be revealed, but we can confidently say, we are a ship of shellbacks.