Update! Get your Update...!

[This post was written on Saturday the 4th of October - very shortly after we made berth in Albany...]

Wow, I am totally being blown away being on the ship right now. Well, that is an ironic statement, the only thing literally being blown away is [cold + nose = something nasty].
Yeah, as of today I’ve got a cold, and feel like trash. BUT I’ve probably had the most fun this entire trip thus far in the recent week of sailing we’ve just had.

Because our duration of the voyage from Geelong to Albany was for 5.5 days, taking into consideration that the previous two voyages of 2 or so days I’ve not had to work, this voyage I was pretty keen to actually do something. Even for 2 days I felt like I was wasting time and allowing others to work overtime while I fished off the back of the ship. So when our Barista team leader said in a saddened tone that we’d actually have to work, I wasn’t shy about hiding my excitement. Then she asked me if I had anywhere I’d like to actually work – and immediately I said “Deckie!” – because the idea of scrubbing the deck surprisingly appealed to me.

The first day of the voyage all Barista’s were given the day off – which was pretty groovy – though we also found out that the Deckies actually didn’t want us – or perhaps it was that they didn’t need us. Bam. Slam that one in the face. There’s a no-go zone for me. So slightly saddened I had a chat with a few people and it was suggested that I ask an Engineer about working in the Engine – cool but, how?

Well, God certainly provided opportunities because while walking through the Mess [the room that everyone whose a grommet can eat so they don’t get all the civilised chairs dirty] I passed 2 Engineers having a break – and after walking straight past them, turned back, picked up my courage off the floor and asked what they thought about me working in the Engine. “Come back at 8:50am before devotions and speak with the chief engineer”… al-righty-then!

To be honest I was actually really positive they would say I couldn’t do anything – but amazingly I got to join the team. The work wasn’t anything technical but it was work that helped out the Engine Department and it was good quality dirty work. No kidding, I went in the first day relatively clean and came out in cover-alls and boots covered head to toe with engine dust, oil grimey sludgey stuff [though this was helped by having a oily grimey sludgey fight while down by the PST tank [basically the place the sludge of the engine lands]], paint and rust converter – pretty much anything I touched ended up on me.

The jobs we’re the most mind boggling but they were really fun! First job – hack rust off pipes and metal, clean up, apply rust converter, primer, and then a finish coat. Twist was that you literally had to twist yourself around poles in order to get to all spots. 3 guys and a girl going hard at rust and painting was pretty hilarious. Job done, moved onto the adjoining room and put primer on the converter that the boys had previously put on. Can I just say B-E-A-YouTIFUL!

Jobs following this generally consisted of cleaning floors [that have a time span of 2 minutes being clean before a big ugly oily foot print was planted in the middle of it], cleaning sludge [as previously mentioned], painting tanks and generators, cleaning the tunnel where the propeller blade shaft resides [surreal because it was the coolest place on the ship and the closest to the ocean – trippy!], cleaning above the control area’s panels [so dirty and black!], vaccuming [psh!] but seriously my favourite job was wire brushing nuts and bolts with the electric brush. Oh my goodness I came out so black and with so many cuts from getting my fingers a little too close to the brush on too many occasions – but the joy I felt when the boys were impressed with how well I did with all my work – that was just another highlight.

Hah – and the first day I was in Engine I walked into the Mess with my lunch and I was thoroughly embarrassed by this LOUD thunderous roar from the Deckies and Engineers who were – cheering? – at me… ha! I haven’t been that red for a long time! [Insert that I got sunburnt a couple of days later and I was equally as burnt then too]. I enjoyed all the work I did in the Engine Department, enjoyed sitting in on the Department devotions with the Electricians and Plumbers, laughing at other people… don’t get me wrong, I love being a Barista but I felt like I had a purpose even if it was minor. I got nickname “Mathias” because that’s whose coveralls I was wearing, and just spent so much time laughing.

Then the morning we arrive into Albany [oh my gosh! Pretty!] after a good 4 days of tiring work, it starts pouring down with rain via this nasty storm that decided to sit on top of Albany. Then I suddenly felt overcome with exhaustion and my body just ached. As the day went on I just kept going down hill and by 11:30am I was back in bed for 2 hours. I got up to go to work to set up the CafĂ© only to have the rain and the wind prevent this. I sat in the dining room with Gerard [Netherlands] who also has a cold and we stared out the windows. By 4pm it was clear we weren’t going to be doing anything outside for a good 2 hours so I managed to crawl back into bed to steal a few more hours sleep. And I’ve pretty much been here ever since. Totally knackered.

Albany day one hasn’t proved to be a big hit, but praying that Sunday will be glorious weather and that many people will take the opportunity to visit the ship while its here for 4 more days. Pray that I also can shake this cold just as fast as it came upon me. It really sucks to be so tired, I cant talk very much because my throat is really sore and my body is in a lot of pain. I will hopefully drag my sorry butt upstairs and post this onto my blog this evening before crawling back to bed and sleeping – again…

19 days to go…

Oh my giddy aunt…


PS – on that note about sending this blog post tonight – I just saw an email that said that the time we’re in Albany we’ve no connection to out Satellite – and we’re using another one which is really low – so not incoming International Calls and no internet for now…The joys of living on a ship that moves around the world – hahahah!

PS - to get you a bit more up-to-date, pretty much the entire time we were in Albany -so, all 5 days, I was really really sick with this flu that's flying around the ship. I spent 5 days intensley ill and ate only 3 pieces of bread and a small amount of soup [a cup one day and a cup another]. I lost alot of water which wasn't pleasant and combined with the weight I've lost in the whole duration of my trip, ended up with none of my clothes actually fitting me anymore. Bah! One bad thing about loosing weight is you have to have clothes to keep up with it. And my first real shift after getting sick I sat in the sun in a jacket to soak up some Vitamin D and managed to soak up just a little too much and ended up with a slight case of heat stroke on top of that. Then the voyage to Fremantle we left at 8pm on a Wednesday night and arrived about 9am the Friday following. We had about 20 minutes watching a whale jumping around early afternoon on the Thursday and a pod of whales jumping around right on dusk that evening.

And now we're in Freo and I had the pleasure of seeing the Fraser's the day we arrived [we had to talk through the fence because we still weren't cleared to leave yet] and then the next day had breaky with Dave, Shae & Mia... that was soooo nice!

So - thats this small update! Its not very busy at work today and I have a huge urge to go swimming - at 4pm!

Love you all!