Sisko finds a new hobby: building a "light ship" (a ship with sails that are pushed by light pressure from a sun) based on ancient Bajoran designs. Bajoran legends say that they explored their region of space as far as Cardassia in these ships 800 years ago, though it seems physically impossible, since solar pressure can't push anything faster than light-speed. Sisko hopes to duplicate their voyage as far as possible. The Cardassians consider the whole thing to be Bajoran fairy tales.Jake goes along for the adventure, and uses the opportunity to show his father one of his stories and tell him about his desire to be a writer. He has been offered a fellowship at a university on Earth, but isn't sure whether he's ready to go that far from home yet. He also tells Ben he needs to start dating again, and that there is a freighter captain named Kasidy Yates with whom he wants to match Ben up.The ship is damaged by space debris, but when they are about to give up and signal for help, they get caught in some sort of space wind that sweeps them at warp speed all the way to Cardassia.Back on the station, Dr. Bashir is tense because a ship carrying the classmate who beat him for the role of valedictorian will be visiting the station. He agonizes over how to deal with her, only to discover that she doesn't even remember him and that the assignment they were competing for, Chief Medical Officer of the USS Lexington, turned out to be a lot more boring than his life on Deep Space 9.
- Ascended Extra: Leeta (making her first appearance) was going to be a one-shot character, but producers liked Chase Masterson's performance and decided to bring her back in future episodes.
- Badass Beard: Sisko has grown a goatee.
- Bottle Episode: Even director David Livingston referred to this episode as one.
- Breather Episode: A very relaxed outing after some action-heavy episodes.
- Experimental Archeology: Sisko's solar sail project.
- Friendship Moment: Bashir and O'Brien get very drunk together and the following conversation ensues:O'Brien: Well, people either love you or hate you.Bashir: Really?O'Brien: I mean, I hated you when we first met.Bashir: I remember.O'Brien: And now...Bashir: And now?O'Brien: Well... now I don't.Bashir: (emotionally) That means a lot to me, Chief, it really does.O'Brien: Yeah! Now, that is from the heart. I really do... not hate you any more.
- Hard Work Montage: When Sisko is building the light ship.
- I Choose to Stay: Jake gets accepted into a writing school back on Earth, but opts to defer for a while to stay with his dad and to experience new things.
- Innocuously Important Episode: Jake mentions he's trying to set Ben up with a Kasidy Yates, who will make her first appearance in the next episode and will eventually become Ben's wife.
- Moment Killer: Jadzia genuinely seems to enjoy cockblocking Bashir.
- My Friends... and Zoidberg: Sisko says that even if Jake leaves the station, he can still hang around with Dax, Bashir...and even Quark.
- Recycled IN SPACE!: It's Kon Tiki...IN SPACE!
- Rousseau Was Right: When the Cardassians find Sisko's solar sail vessel has reached Cardassia, rather than try to suppress it, they throw a party with space fireworks and announce that they've found an old crash site on Cardassia that also proves the story is true. (Albeit with the implication that they already knew about it and only "revealed" it because they had to.)
- Shame If Something Happened: Before Sisko sets sail, Dukat calls him up to try and talk him out of making such a dangerous, foolhardy expedition and says that an hour waiting for a runabout can be a very long time.
- Solar Sail
- Space Is an Ocean: Solar sails are real, but still...
- Space Is Noisy / Explosions in Space: Both of these are common tropes in Star Trek, but this episode gets extra points for showing an actual fireworks display in space, which looks and sounds exactly like it would on a planet's surface.
- You Need to Get Laid: Sisko can't believe that he's getting this from Jake, of all people.