Wednesday, November 28, 2012


No, nothing to do with the Coast Guard or the TSA … it’s more like, well, vocational renewal, I guess.

A couple of weeks ago I told you my boat was headed to the shipyard. It did, but I didn’t go with it. Instead, I was asked to hop over to the replacement boat – a sister ship – and help familiarize the new crew with the field and our job out here for however long they are needed.

One week has turned into two, and for all I know (and, actually, rather hope) may turn into a full four-week hitch. 

The regular third captain on this boat had other business the first week, and then – just as I was preparing to head to a completely new boat and a possible long-term relief master position – “mysteriously fell down a ladder” the day he was supposed to come back to work.

That means that when the first captain comes back to this boat, and the regular second goes home, they’ll be right back where they started if I also leave. So it would make sense for me to stay for a third week, and at that point (in my humble opinion), I might as well stay on the full four.

It does not escape my notice that this arrangement would still allow me to have Christmas at home with the family.

Anyhow, same job, almost identical boat, different crew. And it’s a world of difference.

I am grateful for what the guys on the other boat taught me over the past five-and-a-half months, for sure. 
But it was a couple months past time for me to get off that boat. Call it differences in management styles, or priorities. Maybe culture, too.

A week working with the crew on this boat, and it’s like a whole different company. We actually do things I’d only read about in our recommended safety practices binder.

I can see the bottom of the bilge when I lift a deck plate in the engine room. 

People are pleasant, and professional, and I share some common interests with the other two captains here.

So, anyway, we’ll see what happens. The boat I was supposed to go to this week also sounds cool.

In the end, I’m carrying everything I need to go wherever the company needs me, or home if it comes to that.

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