Is the usual place onboard for people to relax and socialise together and have a few beers. Some may care to relax more than others, overindulgence (the engineers!!) followed by the inability to get up in the morning for work means you may not be allowed any more beer for a period of time, known as ‘having your tap stopped’, this happens. The engineers use the bar most often as you will see, as they have the time and energy in abundance. The deck officers however don’t have so much time and are often tired due to their hectic schedule and demanding tasks!!! (you’ll get used to inter-departmental banter!).
Do not leave your camera in the bar, hastily trying to explain to your mum why there are pictures of nasty parts of partly naked drunken seaman in the envelope from Boots will be uncomfortable at best.
Fill in your honesty page in the bar folder when getting drinks, chocolate, nuts etc, do not ‘forget’. The bar belongs to all the officers and it is those who will be cheated. We are all away from our loved ones, and continually moaning about missing your mum, girlfriend, boyfriend, car, PS3 will not elicit much sympathy. The two normal subjects of conversation in the bar unfortunately tend to gravitate towards engineers talking about the job or everyone having a bloody good moan about the company. There are books and DVDs onboard if you don’t want to go in the bar very often, though it’s nice to show your face now and then. The occasional BBQ and quiz night makes a difference.
Basic advice is, do not get pissed and make a total arse of yourself (too often).
|Tip- Don’t call an Engineer Bald!!!|
|Errr… this was the best of a bad bunch!!|
You will of course be given days of in port when deserved, this means going ashore and enjoying yourself because if found on board you will be given work to do.
A modern luxury, port stays are now measured in hours not days, and the schedule can be very unfair to getting ashore at a civilised time of the day. The only point in your career you will have the time or the curiosity to go ashore is when you’re a cadet, you just don’t have the money. An effort will be made to let (or even make) you go ashore whenever it is possible, bear in mind that you will have to do cargo watches sometime as part of your training. Do not waste your time and money in bars with your hand down some girls pants, she’ll have hers in your wallet.
Do not be late back onboard, even if you have an offer of a threesome with Holly Valance and Elisha Cuthbert, DO NOT be late back onboard. Some places, the US especially, there will be some serious legal repercussions of missing the ship. They may speak a version of English, but they are not like us. If you are not American, the authorities, of which there are many, will view you with suspicion.
Seriously, we have all been cadets, and we all know it can get you down at times. If you’re not happy about anything, talk to somebody about it, a lot can be sorted out when the right person is involved. Use the sat-phone if necessary, and if things really do get too much, you will be able to go home from pretty much any port we go to. We all hope it doesn’t come to that.
Below are some of my favourite pictures of trips ashore picked at random from a big folder on my computer. I hope you have enjoyed all 5 posts and found them useful in some way. I have enjoyed these posts as it was a great excuse to look at lots of old pictures!