|More exciting than my version.|
My folks tried. But it was the late '70s, early '80s, and sunscreen technology was not where it is today.
SPF 8 was a big deal back then. And what 15-year-old boy wants to wear a shirt in the middle of summer on a boat on the bay?
My genetic bequest from the Mexican grandfather did not include dark skin and hair, as it did for some of my cousins.
|Off-loading oysters in Fulton Harbor on Aransas Bay.|
I got the Dutch-German-Irish allotment, and those early days are now coming home to roost. I also got lots of bad sunburns. Really, really bad sunburns.
Not in an awful-scary way, so far. Mostly just little basal-cell carcinomas popping up here and there, and mostly they can be scraped-and-burned or frozen off.
If you're going to get skin cancer, basal-cell carcinoma is the one to get, they say. It doesn't metastasize, and it grows oh-so-slowly. Worst-case, my doc says, is that it may eventually slide down into the muscle to the bone, requiring a more radical excision.
|The eldest taking a turn at the tiller of the new-old|
knock-around boat courtesy of his grandfather.
So, kids, my advice to you is use sunscreen. Lots of it, everywhere. Wear long sleeves. Especially if you are fortunate enough to spend your youth in the low latitudes.
The next round begins tomorrow, and I should be all tuned-up and healed-up in time for the next crew change a few days before Christmas.
|Screen capture of some of Ben's calendar pages.|
So far he has a Hornbeck Offshore Services version, one for the boats of Edison Chouest Offshore, one chock-full of tugs in the Northeast, and I'm not sure what-all else.
Ben's photography is pretty damned good and he's uniquely placed to capture moments many people never get to see.
|What I look like at the end of a|
I recently had the distinct pleasure of showing Christina and fellow maritime blogger Tugster (Will van Dorp) around our own Port Fourchon. Each is, as we say in the South, "good people."
Finally, if you'd like something wearable, may I humbly suggest my own WorkboatWear for nautical t-shirts, hoodies, coffee mugs and the like?
All the best designs come from the mad graphic genius of the MonkeyFist Design Bureau up in Maine.
|I call this activity "honoring my ancestors," |
the ones from County Down y los de Sonora.
It was helpful in getting through the paperwork.
Now, three years almost to the day after starting that upgrade process: Done.
I believe I've checked all the boxes. We'll see if the Coast Guard agrees. All 59 pages of application materials were transmitted through the ether last night.
Assuming the good folks in West Virginia and I are on the same page, in due course (probably about a month), I'll receive a letter approving me to test for the aforementioned licenses. Sometime in the next 12 months -- I'm shooting for June or July -- I'll plant my hiney in a chair in a brightly-lit room in Houston and spend two days attempting to prove I'm worthy of the wheelhouse of a larger vessel.
In the meantime, I'll be spending nearly all of my "spare" time studying. Some of the things I'll be studying have been covered repeatedly in training and testing I've already completed. Others I use on a daily basis.
Still others haven't been tasks common to sailors in this country anytime in the last 30 or 40 years, but what can you do?
I'll keep you posted.
And, wherever you are this month -- ashore or at sea -- Happy Holidays.