Saturday 19th of July 2008 and I arrived to the airport around 8 o'clock.I'm better off a little early if something goes bad. I also have a chance to get an aisle seat if I'm early to check in.
Almost no people at check in and I had passed Immigration some 15 minutes later. Everything runner more smoothly than expected and I have almost 4 hours to kill at the airport. Well, what can I say. Even though the new airport is a major improvement regarding restaurants and shops 4 hours will be a killer.
And what a difference, last time here I was on the way to Manila and it was pure joy waiting for my flight. This time I wait for a flight to the ship and I never managed to muster the joy. And it don't make it any better that I'm facing an 11 hours flight in monkey class this time.
The best option would be a canon, just to aim at Oporto in Portugal, without the stop in Frankfurt, and just fire me off through the stratosphere.
I was at the hospital yesterday and I got 14 sleeping pills of the Doctor and I hope I can sleep my way to Frankfurt.
Well, I was walking up and down the airport when I passed a coffee shop. Chinese food on the menu and while I was reading what they had to offer one of the girls pointed at me.
- I know you!
I was almost shitting myself thinking NO WAY! I didn't remember her at all. She was looking at me and she didn't remember where she had seen me. 3 seconds later she said:
- I saw you at Kobune at MBK Center!
- You were always eating Kare Udon!
Unbelievable, 10 years ago I took the 60 - 90 minutes walk to MBK Center, back then MBK Center was called Mahboonkrong, every day eating Kare Udon at the Japanese restaurant
- On the 3rd floor? I asked.
- Yes, on the 3rd floor she said.
I can't believe this, we're talking some 10 years ago. I don't remember the last time I was at Kobune, but this was many many years ago. My last picture from Kobune is from 4th of April 1998. I ordered a diet drink and a noodle soup and I sat down at a table.
- DARN! That girl is so very very beautiful!
I thought something was very fishy around here.
- How can she remember me? Impossible! I thought.
I mean, she looked a little too young. OK, it's hard to see if they are 20 or 30, but she looked a little too young to have been worked at Kobune 10 years ago. I asked how old she was.
I don't believe she worked there 10 years ago. She told me that she was working there when she was 22 and then I wasn't around. This will remain an enigma. Well, anyway, I asked if she had a boy friend. She was single and she wanted to have children of mixed race.
- 50 Thai 50 Africa? I asked.
This was not what she had in mind. They all want to have mixed children, half of the celebrities' in Funky Town are mixed race and a baby of mixed race seems to be the top desiderata in Funky Town. Hell, a few years ago my friend was offered BIG money if he managed to get a girl pregnant. She arrived to the hotel room in a big Benzo and the purse brimmed with money.
Well, time to leave for the gate. I'M IN LOVE AGAIN! But again, I can bet almost everything that she never meet me before, but how the hell could she know about Kobune and my daily Kare Udon?
Well, boarding time 2325 and departure 2355. Anyone of you ever experienced that boarding time is the same as mentioned at the boarding card? And you expect the door to close at 23:55.
- OK, sit down we're getting the f@ck out of here its 2355!
Yeah, right, at 2355 the boarding was still to start. We got an announcement that the flight was delayed due to rain. I guess they gay next to me were lucky. Obviously he had left his loved one behind. He was standing next to me and I could not help eavesdrop.
Conversation was held in pigeon English so I didn't understood the full content of the conversation. But it seems like everything had been “I love you forever” when the guy left for the airport. I can not even guess what happened during his way to the airport, but it must have been something horrible. Was it the buffalo that died or was one of her brother had a motorcycle accident? I don't know, but it seemed like money was required.
- Will you wait for me?
OK, I had it and I moved on hoping for the boarding to start.
We left FUNKY TOWN 2 hours late, I dropped a sleeping pill and I managed to sleep all the way, almost. It was terrible, even if I managed to get an empty seat next to me. Monkey class seats are, well, after 2 hours it's like sitting on a board.
Sunday 20th of July 2008 and we landed in Frankfurt just after 7. No gate available for us and we had to go by bus. Jaja, sitta på en bus e precis vad jag längtade efter.
But DARN! It was nice to get out of the plane. On this trip I must be serious with my diet, I can't stand flying back like this again. If this flight was terrible I can imagine going back home. FUNKY TOWN - Europe is always nice in comparison with the flight back east. Always better to fly towards West.
Well, my diet didn't got the kick off I had expected. I was soon at my favourite airport restaurant ordering breakfast. And here in Frankfurt the serve you the best breakfast I had ever had on an airport.
A pot of tea, fresh orange juice, egg & bacon, cold cuts and plenty fresh German bread. DARN! It's not only the return flight I have to worry about. We remember the girl on the Pilates at my GYM. My heart still does a few extra beats when thinking of her. And this time coming home.....
And the girl that thought I was handsome. She was so worried when I left the GYM yesterday.
- How will it go now when you can't exercise every day?
Yeah, what will happen? Will I blow myself out of proportion coming back like a zeppelin.
After my breakfast I went to Gate A40 for my flight to Oporto. Nice to be in Europe, no one checking your shoes or how much toothpaste you have. OK, I already lost my tooth paste back in FUNKY TOWN. Nice and clean airports, totally different from the USA, the backward country where every airport looks like a war zone with screaming security and crying passengers.
Same with my last flight, boarding 0925 and departure 0950. Do you think we got away at 0950? 2 hours 25 minutes flight to Portugal and the Agent had a taxi driver to pick me up together with a guy from Atlas Copco.
It took us about 45 minutes to get to the ship. A nice high way all the way and I can see the EU has spent some of my tax money on the highways in Portugal. Nice to know.
Even though I had finished a 1, 5 litre bottle of water in the taxi I asked for a new bottle first thing coming onboard. Then I was showed to my cabin, our Chief Officer will stay for another week or so and I live in a spare cabin during the time. When my bag (35,5kg) was delivered to my cabin I took out my laptop and snus. (most of the 35,5kg)
I promised myself, no, I swore that I would open my school book this time around. And I mean it, instead of spending time at the dinner table I will study.
I spent the afternoon walking on deck and checking out the CCR. Most things on deck are upside down. They are removing the IG and put in N2 instead and this is a big job. They are also painting the hull. But she looks good on deck and not much rust around.
Our 1st Engineer recognised me from CT Sun, I didn't recognise him. But I was happy, obviously I haven't aged very much since I was in CT Sun.
Well, brushing my teeth was the next best thing happening today. Best was when I stepped in to my cabin after almost 24 hours on the go. My shower will also hit it high on this list. But first dinner and then I'm off to bed after a hot shower.
So what is coming in dead last over good things happening today?
Captain telling me that we were only going to Europe 1 or 2 times a year. So I'm looking forward to one of those cross Pacific flight when signing off. On top of that Thai have cancelled their NON STOP service between New York and FUNKY TOWN due to the prices on jet fuel. The LA to FUNKY TOWN service will be suspended during the autumn and God knows how many hours I will have to spend on a plane signing off.
Monday 21st of July 2008 and I woke up at 0645 after a full night's sleep. I went to bed between 9 and 10 yesterday and sleep was required. So when they called me at 0715 I was ready with my morning shower and I went down to the mess room for my morning tea.
Well, I made a mental note to go ashore buy a tea mug ASAP after my 1st cup of tea. I had 2 crisp bread with cheese, no butter for breakfast while thinking of the girl at the Pilates.
- He he, I will soon look better than ever!
I read a few manuals after my tea, I never seen this ODME before and I read the manual. But I have to wait until the slop tanks are painted before I can get on deck to check the equipment.
They plan to start fill up the dry dock tomorrow and we need to fill ballast. They had made some minor repairs in the FP and we went to check the work. Looks good and Bosun can put his best guy to paint the welding. When it's ready we can start fill up the ballast. But we're on a shipyard and tomorrow soon turns out to be in 2 or 3 days.
Our bridge, work in progress and everything is upside down
I managed to find the tea machine after a while, but still no sign of the entertainment center
When I came onboard yesterday one of the first things I checked out was the bridge. I need to check a few things on my “IMPORTANT LIST ”:
• Tea machine
• Refrigerator for milk to my tea
• Entertainment center
There are works in progress on the bridge and everything is upside down, but I found the tea machine after a while. But no sign of any entertainment center. So this morning I asked our Chief Officer about the entertainment center and I was relieved when he said that there was music. Just to make sure I asked our 2nd Officer as well, and he confirmed that we had an entertainment center on the bridge.
I need to go ashore and buy tea mugs and diet drinks. We only have 2 diet drinks onboard and that's not enough. I asked our 2nd Engineer if he wanted to join me and we decided to go at lunch.
- We can as well have lunch ashore, I suggested.
The Inspector from Broström had been in school with me in Gothenburg. Surprise, I didn't recognise him, but he recognised me. Well, anyway, he told me that Broström have a rented car for the crew on the jetty and that we could use the car.
I don't like to drive and I was lucky that the 2nd Engineer wanted to come ashore. We left the shipyard on two wheels and we were soon at a restaurant in town.
The waitress came to our table.
- We don't have any English menu. But I will read it for you!
- We have white soup with mushrooms!
- I take a soup, 2nd Engineer said.
- I don't like mushrooms so I skip the soup, I said.
The she said something about chicken and quish or whatever it was.
- We both ordered the chicken because this was the only thing we understood.
So I was pretty surprised when she came with the quish, no chicken but plenty mushroom. What the, didn't I told her that I didn't liked mushrooms?
After lunch we were looking for an ATM and then we took off to the shopping center. I didn't found any tea mug so I had to buy 2 jugs, well, it's better than nothing. Diet drinks were also bought and we were ready to go back to the ship.
I spent the afternoon in my new office, busy getting in to all the new stuff (Uploading all my music to the computer), but I remember most of it since last time in Broström. But there is plenty new paper work since I was here last time. But I recognise most of the stuff.
Tuesday 22nd of July 2008 and I spent the day familiarizing myself with the cargo computer and the Methanol test machine, Portable Datalogging Spectrophotometer. The Portable Datalogging Spectrophotometer is for testing our Methanol wall wash, insert the test tube and the machine check chlorides, colour, hydrocarbons and other stuff, sounds easier than it is. Well, anyway, I managed to sneak ashore in the afternoon for some diet drinks.
After dinner I went ashore for a constitutional, I walked for 1 hour along the beach and then I turned around and I walked back to the ship. It was a beautiful evening and I really enjoyed my walk. Plenty fishes to watch along the jetty in the marina. I think I will do it again tomorrow. Burning fat and I will soon be flat, will the girl at the Pilates be surprised when I'm back?
- Where is Porky? I miss Porky!
Well, Porky is history and I hope we never have to see this guy again.
Coming back to the shipyard after my walk
Bro Provider in the back
Well, coming back from my walk and I took a few pictures of the ship. I took one just outside the gate before entering the shipyard. My iPod on full blast. I stopped inside to take a picture of our funnel. I thought I heard someone screaming, but I continued towards the ship.
Well, there was someone screaming and I turned around. One of the securities came running after me:
- You have no authority to take pictures within the company!
- Only one more! I tried.
I meet one of the ABs at the jetty, he was on the way ashore with the engine cadet to play basket ball.
- Have you been ashore exercising? He asked.
- Yeah, have to look good when we go home.
- Do you want to join us for the basket court?
well, I have to attend to my school books. Believe it or not, I spend a few hours with my books yesterday and my plan is to make this a daily routine. Will the girl at the Pilates be surprised when I'm back? I will be able to tell her that I love her. Well, she will most likely call the police.
Well, today they told us that they work on a naphtha voyage from Libya to Brazil and that will be a nice one. Almost time to sign off when we come to Brazil. A quick tour to Europe and I will have a short flight home. Brazil to FUNKY TOWN is a killer and I really don't want to make a trip like that. I will try to get on a ship trading in Europe or SE Asia next time.
Wednesday 23rd of July 2008 and I woke up to yet another day in dry dock. They will start fill the dock in the afternoon, but just to the sea chest so we can get cooling water to the engine.
They wanted to start filling before lunch, but the ballast was not ready and we have to wait for a few hours. We will start floating forward when the water reach the sea chest so we need the ballast.
During the afternoon they changed it to 5 o'clock tomorrow morning. They only gave us 2 water hoses from shore so it's slow filling up the ballast.
After dinner we started our hydraulic system and we heaved up our anchors from the dock. Then I was off for my walk, I took about 1 hour today. I'm a little tired after walking around on deck during the day. I took the opportunity to buy a bag of diet drinks and I returned to the ship.
A hot shower and one hour with my school books before sleeping, it seems like it will be an early day tomorrow.
I'm happy that I managed to keep the one hour of study per day routine and actually its fun. Now I'm just waiting for the diet routine to kick in.
Thursday 24th of July 2008 and we were out of the dry dock when I woke up. I was surprised that they didn't call me at 5 o'clock this morning. When I got back to the ship yesterday I meet Chief Officer and Chief Engineer.
- I told them to call us 5 o'clock tomorrow morning, Chief Officer told me.
So I expected a 5 o'clock wakeup call and I wasn't disappointed when I woke up at 0745. Don't tell anyone, but if I can choose between sleep and go up at 5 in the morning the choice is an easy one.
But I needed the extra sleep, we will have an DNV Inspector for stripping test of 1 Port and 7 Starboard and I will run up and down the tanks. But thanks to California WOW I'm ready for the running up and down the ladders.
Well, we started with 1 Port and we could not start the pumps. None of the cargo pumps were working and a little swearing and cursing could be heard on deck, well, maybe a wee bit more than a little.
As mentioned before we are changing our IG to N2 and the “LOW IG PRESSURE” alarm over ride was sitting on the old IG cabinet. We have no IG pressure in the tanks and the alarm is on and we cannot run the pumps. But we turned on the new over ride in the engine room and we could start stripping.
So why is there an over ride on the automatic tripping? Well, when we are gas free e.g. when doing tank cleaning it would be impossible to run the pumps if we couldn't over ride the alarm.
1st Picture: The pump suck the water out of the well and up the cargo pipe. 2nd Picture: Cargo pipe is full and pump is sucking air.
Stripping of the tanks went smooth and if you want to know about the pumps take a quick visit to my WEB SHIP. But it's mainly to push the last cargo out of the pump with air. We discharge through a cargo pipe and when the tank is empty and the pump is sucking air the pump lose its suction. If we stop the pump the remaining cargo in the pipe, from the pump up to the cargo valve on deck, will fall back down in the tank.
Instead of dropping it down in the tank we push the cargo back down to the pump and up the 2 inch stripping pipe by air or N2 pressure. And 20 meter of cargo in a 6 inch pipe is obviously more than 20 meter cargo in a 2 inch pipe.
On the left hand picture you can see the air blowing after pushing the water through the stripping pipe. The air is pushing the water down the cargo pipe and up the stripping line. The air is obviously blowing out when the cargo pipe is empty. You better stay clear or you get wet.
I got wet, yes I did. But I wanted to be close up for a picture. Our Cadet and DNV Inspector were well clear of the water. But I don't mind going through the extra trouble for a nice picture.
Our Cadets were busy with some tedious task, a lot of stuff to carry on a ship yard. But I asked them to come down check the pump during the test. Now they understand how the pump is working, priceless experience.
- Hmm, what was it our Electrician on Barcarolle said? Yeah, you can't buy health and experience!
OK, the stripping test went well, 60 litres left in 1 Port and 55 litres in 7 Stb. And we are ready with the DNV Inspector on deck. He will be back tomorrow and stamp our P & A manual after the updates with new stripping system. We got a new super stripp system at the ship yard as well so there will not be much left in the tanks when we have super stripped the tanks.
Tonight it's representation. The shipyard will bring us ashore for dinner at a nice restaurant. You see, I'm coming as a new Chief Officer and I start right off with dinners and stuff. I love it! The shipyard representatives will pick us up at 1945.
The only thing I'm worried about is my school books. If it will be late I will have to skip my reading tonight. OK, if it's for one night only.
I was at the gate just after 1945 and I meet the shipyard representatives, there were 3 of them. We were waiting for 20 minutes or so before Captain, Chief Officer and the Chief Engineer came. Chief Engineer was a wee bit late due to the DO bunkering and we were waiting for him. We got 2 trucks of DO and they are not allowed to bunker until after 1700, shipyard regulations.
We took off in 2 cars and it would have been a 5 to 10 minutes ride to the restaurant if it hadn't been for the traffic jam on the bridge.
As I understood it the bridge was built by Mr. Eiffel, the very same guy that built the Paris tower. Well, the guy from the shipyard told me something about it, but the bridge was over 100 years old. But tonight they had closed one lane and thus the traffic jam.
Our Inspector from Broström was waiting for us at the restaurant with his family and one other guy from the shipyard.
There was a table for us and we took our seats, we ended up being 11 people and the staff started to bring out the wine.
- Can I please have a diet drink?
They brought us plates with starters and I was told that one of the dishes were pig ears.
- Hmm, that's what we use as doggy chew in Sweden.
There were some other stuff and bread. I tried something that looked like a flat spring roll.
- Please, don't tell me what it is until I'm finished! I asked.
You know, sometimes its better not to know. Like when I was in Paris on a drinking spree with my friend. We had a dinner, ok, it wasn't good. We could eat the potato and we asked what the rest was.
- Cow stomach.
So it's better to find out what's on the plate when you're finished. And I don't know what they like to eat in Portugal. Portuguese speciality maybe tastes better than it sounds. Well, Portuguese, it turned out to be a Brazilian restaurant and I found out a wee bit too late. I had stuffed myself with bread and flat spring rolls when I realized that it was my favourite kind of Brazilian restaurant.
We remember restaurants from Santos and other places we have visited with aladdin.st, and this was the very same kind of Brazilian restaurant.
When they arrived with the BBQ I was already full, mostly by diet drinks. I managed to eat a few sausages and then it was pretty much stop.
Our Chief Engineer and I went out every 5 minutes to do our business but it didn't helped very much. I just couldn't eat anymore and one of the shipyard guys asked me if I didn't like the fine meat.
- I'm full. They start to fill you with bread and cheap sausage before the real meat comes in.
But anyway, I like the sausages better than the meat.
Friday 25th of July 2008 and I was almost dead when they called me at 0715. We got back onboard way too late yesterday. Well, it was actually early this morning.
Things are coming back at place on deck and it feels good. Our lifeboat is back onboard and our Methanol tanks are back onboard. They crew have started to close the ballast tanks and I have started to fill ballast.
Internet, that's the setback. I file is missing in the program that operates the satellite dish and we cannot get any internet.
Well, if they can't get the file for tomorrow I have to go ashore to upload my web page. I don't know when I have the next opportunity. Latest news is that there is a cargo of Ethanol in Brazil. But I have calculated on a few different cargoes so nothing is for sure. Italy - USA, cancelled. Same with Egypt to Portugal.
We see. But the plan is to leave the shipyard on Monday and I need to upload my web page before that. And they better off finding the missing file before we're leaving.
Saturday 26th of July 2008 and they called me at 0715. DARN! I went to bed 8 o'clock yesterday and I slept like a baby all night long. I even missed my language course yesterday, 2nd day now and I promised myself to get on to the books tonight. I can just imagine the reaction of the girl at Pilates if I come back and being able to say BIP all.
OK, I got a 2 hours walk through the city in the evening and it was nice. 2 days of rain and no walk, well, Thursday we had dinner with the shipyard, but yesterday it was raining. It's a nice city with old streets and houses. I also managed to find an internet place so hopefully I can upload my web page tomorrow. I have given up on the internet onboard and I hope I can survive for 10 weeks without any uploads.
And my e-mail, I expect important e-mails from Norway and I told them that they can use my ordinary e-mail address because we have internet onboard.
Tomorrow I will start to kick ass with my diet. I don't know if they are ready for the “Blindfold diet” here yet so I will slow start it by trying the “Empty chair diet”.
Our Chief Officer will leave tomorrow morning and I'm alone. Well, most of the thing is ready and the last thing is the N2 system. Hopefully this will be ready tomorrow and we can get instructions on how to operate the system tomorrow. It should have been demonstrated today but it's delayed until tomorrow. And when I came back from my walk at 9 o'clock the UNITOR guy was still working with the system.
We got stores today and Captain has ordered diet drinks so now I have to finish them He was worried that no one would drink them.
- We will never get rid of all these diet drinks, he said anxiously.
- DO YOU WANT A BET??!!
My plan was to give up the diet drinks, but now I have to continue for a bit longer. Well, we have the Captain on Pegasus fresh in mind even though this was back in 2005. He could not believe me when I ordered 30 cases of diet drinks. We lifted it straight to my cabin with the provision crane.
And who can forget Rainbow Warrior? The crew had to carry my diet drinks all over the shipyard. Dropping the cans so they were rolling all over the place.
Sunday 27th of July 2008 and I started the day by discussing today's work with Pump man and Bosun. Pump man will change the wear rings on the pump in SLOP Port and Bosun will spin on the last of our new mooring ropes to the winches. Then I had my morning tea.
Our Inspector came onboard in the middle of my GOOD MORNING tea and we soon moved in to my office for a diet drink. 2nd day onboard I meet the Inspector for the first time.
He recognized me and it took me a few seconds before I recognized him. But we had been in school together back in the good old days.
It was time to change cabin. Out of the OWNERS ROOM in to the Chief Officer's cabin. Then it's just to wait for the N2 demonstration, after lunch is the latest. But you never know.
Most of the stuff is ready on deck and I had the crew to clean up deck so we can hose down tank deck tomorrow without stuffing the scuppers with shit. Then we're pretty much ready to load and that's nice. Comparing to my last dry dock when the ship should have been towed to Alang after 3 months at a Chinese shipyard.
Our 2nd Engineer is signing off today and his flight was at 1130. He has just been onboard for a week during the stay at the shipyard. While moving in to my cabin I could hear the 2nd Engineer in his cabin. He woke up late and now he was fighting with his luggage.
He seems to have the same problem as I use to have. Too much in the bag and he had to jump on the bag in order to close the bag. But he managed to get away in time.
The N2 plant was almost ready at lunch. Our DNV Inspector and the UNITOR guy checked the system and our Chief Engineer did some last adjustments.
We had a nice lunch, our Cock is very good and the food is excellent. When I had finished lunch I went to my cabin to try the internet, finally it was working. Slow, very slow, the first time I used it. But after a few adjustments the speed was OK and I could receive my e-mails and I also uploaded my web page.
It's not only the 2nd Engineer and Chief Officer signing off today. 2 Electricians and our Fitter left us as well and the Inspector left us after lunch.
We have two guys from Denmark left onboard working with the boilers. All the other people are off the ship and now it's nice in the mess room during the meals.
Before it was crowded and noisy, except for breakfast when it was crew only in the mess room.
Well, before going to the demonstration of the N2 plant I saw the Fitter and our Electricians leaving in the taxi for the airport. Captain called me in my cabin and asked if I wanted 2nd and 3rd Officer to participate in the demonstration.
- NO! It's enough with the Pump man, I said.
On the way down to the CCR I changed my mind. It's a good idea to get the 2nd and 3rd Officer to know the system as well. 2nd Officer were busy with something so it was only 3rd Officer, Pump man, a Cadet and the Chief Engineer that participate in the demonstration.
Just after 1 o'clock the UNITOR guy started to demonstrate the system for us. It took an hour or so and we were ready just after 2 o'clock and our Chief Engineer wanted to test the main engine.
After dinner I went ashore to buy new headphones and I had planned to take a 2 hours walk, last chance before leaving tomorrow. Well, when I came out from the shopping center it was raining.
- DARN! My last evening destroyed by rain.
I was back onboard just after 8 o'clock and I will have a hot shower before going to bed with my school books. Hopefully I will have a long night's sleep. Tomorrow will be a busy day, Pilot is ordered for 12 and we will drop anchor outside the port to fill up our ballast.
Maximum 4,5 meters draft at departure so we will be almost empty at departure.
Monday 28th of July 2008 and we spent the morning by lifting ashore all the garbage and equipment on deck. At 1150 the Pilot came onboard and we left the shipyard at 1220. When the Pilot left us I started to fill up the ballast.
Our crew were busy cleaning deck and painting the new pipes and stuff they made at the shipyard. Now it's only covered with shop primer and the rain the last few days prevented us from painting. But today its sun shine and the crew are busy.
Still nothing about our next voyage. The Brazil to US is still on, but they are looking for a cargo so we have something to bring over the Atlantic and thus making more money. The company makes nothing with ships going around with ballast.
As you have noticed we got our internet up and running. We got a new SEAIT satellite dish on the shipyard. Plenty job to lay all the new cable and they had to take down the ceiling. The last ceiling to put back is on the bridge and one of our Cadets and a AB were putting back the insulation and the ceiling.
Tuesday 29th of July 2008 and we were still anchored when I came on my watch at 0800. It was a beautiful morning and the sea was like an windmill pond. I enjoyed a few buckets of tea and it was soon lunch time.
I had a quick lunch and I was off to my office for some paper work. We had some drills planned for 1 o'clock and it's nice to be ready with the paper work. I need to print a ballast report every day and file it. Why?
- Don't ask me, they come up with so much bull now a days.
Well, anyway, the fire alarm went off at 1300 and we mustered at our muster station on poop deck. All present, fire in the steering engine and the action could start.
I'm TEAM Leader of #2 Team and we started to cool down poop deck and thus preventing the fire to spread. Well, Chief Officer and I had them to hose down the poop deck and we got rid of all the blaster grits and shit left from the ship yard at the same time.
You know, it takes seconds for a fire to spread upwards, minutes to the sides and hours for the fire to spread below the original fire. So by cooling down poop deck over the steering engine we prevent the heat to start any fire on poop deck. (And we got our poop deck cleaned at the same time)
Our excellent crew had the fire under control in no time and soon the fire was extinguished. Just to make sure I had my team to continue the cooling of the poop deck. We don't want the fire to start again.
After the fire drill it was time for the lifeboat muster. All crew knew their duties and that's even though we have plenty new crew. But this is the first thing we check when coming onboard for the first time, our duties in case of emergency. Right?
After the lifeboat muster we held one more
drill. The oil spill drill, maybe the most exciting drill there is. I started to explain for the crew about the Nitrogen. VERY DANGEROUS!
the chemical element of atomic number 7, a colourless, odourless unreactive gas that forms about 78 per cent of the earth's atmosphere.
ORIGIN late 18th cent.: from French nitrogne (see NITRO-, -GEN).
Air contains different gases of nearly constant concentrations. The atmospheric gases of steady concentration are as follows:
But in our daily speak we say that the air consists of 78% Nitrogen and 21% Oxygen and 1% of other gases.
Well, nitrogen is not dangerous, most of our air we breathe is nitrogen. But it's when it's pure it's dangerous. When we loaded Caustic in Freeport with Barcarolle the Surveyor told me a story. There had been a Stolt ship inerting her tanks with nitrogen. Their 3rd Officer dropped something in a tank and he took on a filter mask and went down the tank. After a few steps he was dead. What a tragedy! Imagine his family sitting home and wait for him and the only thing they got is bad news.
So the filter mask protects you against dangerous gases but not the lack of oxygen. He should have donned a breathing apparatus. But of course, you should never enter an inerted tank.
OK, while on deck I took the opportunity to take a picture of the crew and as you can see we had nice weather. Still anchored with Portugal in the back. No news about any new voyage, but they are talking about Milford Haven to US. The Ethanol in Brazil is not ready until end of August. Well, I really hope the Milford Haven trip will be cancelled, that's not a very nice place and I have no wishes to get back there.
TEAM Bro Provider
Wednesday 30th of July 2008 and we were still anchored when I came on my morning watch. The weather was gloomy and grey and we were rolling a little due to swell. But no wind and it was OK. I started with 3 slices of crisp bread and tea.
When I finished my breakfast I spent most of the time reading about Methanol and it wasn't any exciting reading. But I learnt a few things. My first time on a Methanol tanker so there is plenty to learn. Tank cleaning and stuff and I could not help wondering:
- How the BIP did I end up here?
Well, 10 weeks will turn quick and it's time to go home. After lunch we held a safety meeting with the crew on the bridge. One of our Deck Cadets held the meeting and of course I took a few pictures of the event.
- Now you can impress the girls in you class by being on the internet!
While on the bridge with the crew I took the opportunity to take a picture of the whole gang. After the meeting I asked them to go on the bridge wing and I got my picture. Captain was in his office talking with Norway about out voyage to Brazil so he is missing on the picture.
TEAM Bro Provider
They are still working on the Ethanol in Brazil. Now they have a cargo in the middle of August that another Broström ship should have loaded. But she is stuck in Argentina and it looks like we will take this cargo. Good, 14 days to Brazil and we have time to really get to know the ship.
Thursday 31st of July 2008 and we were still anchored when I came on my morning watch. The wind had picked up and it was blowing force 5 to 6 from South. Raining and it was gloomy and grey so no painting on deck. But the crew were busy hosing down deck and she start to look good.
I spent the whole watch reading about Methanol while listening to mu language course. I have been a little negligent with my language course the last few days. But at least I got 1 hour yesterday and I listen to the course every bridge watch.
They called from Norway just before 12 and told us to go bunker on Las Palmas and then to go to Paranagua to load Ethanol.
Our Pump man spent the afternoon preparing deck for the tank cleaning for Ethanol while I was in my cabin attending some important paper work.
Coming on my night watch and we were steaming SW towards Las Palmas for bunkering. It was a beautiful evening, but the swell made the ship roll and it was pretty annoying. But I could have my tea without any problem.
When we where about 80 NM North of Lisbon I saw that we had M/T Kronviken on our Starboard side. The AIS showed the distance 19 miles and I tried to call them on the VHF.
I told the Officer on the watch that I was supposed to have signed on Kronviken as Chief Officer mid August. I told him that it might be that I will sign on in October/ November instead and I asked if I could ask a few question.
According to the Officer on watch it was a nice ship, new built. Captain and Chief Officer from Norway. 2nd & 3rd Officer from Ukraine and there was a Swedish something onboard. I didn't hear if it was an Officer or Cadet. I had Hip Hop on full blast on the entertainment centre.
In my iPod I have weeks of music and I don't have to hear one single song twice. I remember back in the days when your entire luggage were full of cassette tapes and you had heard it all after a few hours. So it wasn't better back in the days, we were just younger!
Well, anyway, they made their second voyage between North Sea and Morocco with crude oil and then they were off to Gabon. I thanked for the help.
- Have a nice watch and I might see you in October/ November!
Well, that's it for July 2008 and we swing over to August
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