Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The End is Near?

I had hoped to make this a long term journal. Sadly, it isn’t looking like that is likely to happen. I have skipped the last few days entries to try to get a feel for what was going on aboard here. The atmosphere has vacillated here. One day, it is pure harassment from the turd mate, and the next, I am left alone and allowed to work.

Last night on watch, I allowed my self to get a bit optimistic. I was keeping the “carrot” (of making enough money to eliminate some bills) in front of me. Trying to focus on the good with the New Year upon us. That feeling lasted until just before our coffee break at 1000.

Approximately 20 minutes before break, the Bosun (my immediate supervisor, kind of like a SGT) came to me with the news that there was some equipment that needed to be picked up by the bridge.

“Ok, no problem.”

“Wait, there’s a catch, you can’t start until your coffee break.”

I know, it doesn’t sound like much. But that is something that is unheard of if there isn’t some kind of emergency going on. What other job (what other ship?) would they give you an assignment, then tell you not to start until your break starts?

I asked, and was told that this order came straight from the Captain. I was being “punished” for not picking up my gear yesterday afternoon. LOL. Sorry, dude, I am a bit old for that. Childish games like this indicate that the end is indeed near. BTW, I left the gear out because someone was supposed to come out behind me and finish the job.

I should have put my heart rate monitor on (I just did, it is hovering around the mid 90’s, it is usually 72).

It has taken me almost an hour to calm down enough to try and put a few words down here. I had been planning an update today anyway. It was supposed to be about looking forward to hitting the beach and going for runs and bike rides. Sorry.

This journal is what it is. However it turns out, I refuse to go back and change it. How true is an edited diary? I will be most interested in your responses to this side of my life which many of you have heard stories about, but never been able to appreciate. You psych majors have to let me know of your analysis. LOL. A sociologist would have sensory overload trying to observe this (or any) group of mariners.

Our crew consists of a large number of Northeasterner’s. Maine and Mass. Natives make up the majority of the slots here.

AB1: My roomie, Joe, is a 62 yr old W. Virginia man who has retired in Thailand. He is quite the character but will do anything he can for you. Good guy.

AB2: Is a guy from Brooklyn. 49 yr old and fits all the Brooklyn/NY stereotypes. Loud and always with the first and last word. But again, not such a bad fellow.

AB3: Younger black ex-Navy guy from Miss. First time out here and not sure what he wants to do. Work on ships, oilfield or what? Pretty quiet, keeps mostly to himself.

AB4: Older guy from Maine. Typical N’easter. But has a great outlook and does a much better job of letting the BS roll off of his back. Wants to save his money and retire to a cabin in Montana?

Bosun: Not much to say, could do with out him. He is supposed to not only supervise, but represent us also…….Don’t know where he is from. Don’t really care

Capt: From somewhere in the NE. Just came on board. Kind of a neutral to negative feeling about him. H is definitely more about the company than us.

Chief Mate: Decent guy from Houston. Relatively young. Great outlook. Hope we can work together again on a better ship.

2nd mate: He is the officer that I stand watch with. Luckily for me, he is also one the most level headed of the group. The poor guy has to be my therapist every night up on the bridge while we are underway. LOL

3rd mate: Never mind. From same somewhere in NE as Captain. See the problem there.

There are four engineers. Chief, 1st assistant, 2nd and 3rd. And there are 3 mechanics that work down there also. They are a mixed bag also. Two Filipinos, a couple of NE’s, Ohio and an Indian/Mexican guy.

And our cook is from the NW and isn’t very good at his job.

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