Monday, March 17, 2014

Aboard Ship for the first time

From Morehead City, NC to the Rock of Gibraltar is about 4000 miles. We were about 11-12days reaching the Rock. In the mean time life on the ship is constant cleaning, rifles and equipment.  Daily lessons of cultures and ports of the Med. What not to do in port to insult the locals, etc.


(The rock is British, 30,000 people live on less than 3 sq miles.  John & Yoko were married here) 

It was an education to me, to say the least. Learning shipboard life was an adventure. There was still guard duty.  I had never thought of it, but we had a lot of money aboard the ship. At that time the military paid in cash, so we were carrying enough money to pay everyone for 6 weeks.


(Same ocean, different ship, many years later on my 2nd or 3rd crossing.)

One of our guard posts was with the safes. They took no chances, the hatch was locked on the outside and I locked it on the inside. Just like your security on the internet, we required passwords, to open for the Officer of the day or the relief. The funny thing about the ‘Hold’ the safes were in, there were two jeeps. so you could sit in a jeep, doze or write letters. That was very unusual guard duty.

8-Ship passing in the night-Sapphire Princess

I loved the weather decks at night and  learned the thrill of seeing another ship’s lights miles away as we passed in the night. It is a strange feeling of camaraderie (or fellowship)and you have no idea if it is a cargo or passenger ship. It didn’t happen every night, but when it did it caused a smile.


I don’t know if I am different or not, but when I saw those ships I would always wonder where is She headed. Who is aboard? Why are they going?  Shucks I do that when I am near an airport and see the planes in the sky, heck, I do that on the road.  I am just curious.

Oh man, the water was beautiful and the more I commented I finally said that to someone who was an ‘Old Salt’ (who had sailed a lot), “You ain’t seen nothing yet, there is nothing in the world as pretty as the water in the Mediterranean.”  So I was anxious to pass the Rock of Gibraltar. 


What a beautiful sight seeing the big rock of Gibraltar the first sign of land in two weeks. Oh yes, the water in the Med is VERY beautiful.


We who had never seen a foreign port were thrilled to be thinking of hitting our first foreign port.  We were scheduled to pull into Toronto, Italy and  pick up supplies, Fresh Fruit and Veggies. We never picked up milk or eggs, those were all powered and not so pretty good. I learned to put a lot of ketchup on the powdered eggs and they were okay. LOL

Nite Shipslog


The only disappointment from the beautiful water in the med was the ports, the water in the ports was filled with trash and flotsam. I hope they have cleaned up the waters there, it was filthy & stunk.



I know the bottom one is a Fiat, 1957.

Mostly Italian cars with one French.


Louis la Vache said...

When «Louis» lived in the San Francisco Bay area and had that view of the Golden Gate Bridge, he liked to watch the ships come and go. He wondered where they were going and where they had been. He often wished he had been on one heading out to sea!

betty said...

I like the guard duty if you could doze a bit with it! I think that was good you got the education of what to expect at the places you were going to be stationed at, to get a feel of the locals, so to speak!


Paula said...

Really like this entry, so interesting. I too wonder about modes of transportation, who is on there and where are they doing and why. I especially wonder about old houses, who lived there and what did they do.

Back Porch Writer said...

Interesting....I always wonder where people are traveling to and what their stories are. Especially by boat! It's more intriguing. I remember one day the interstate being backed up. We were stopped for about 40 minutes or so. People began getting out of the cars and standing around and talking to one another out of boredom. We were on the way to Florida. We even shared food. We had Brownies to offer. We met a couple traveling to Florida b/c they'd had a rough time as they'd just lost their son and needed to get away. We said we'd pray for them. Then the wreck cleared and we headed off again. Traveling sure takes you places and introduces you to many people along life's journey.


What a wonderful story about your time at sea. The first time is always most special.

shirl72 said...

I always wonder where people are
going.. I sure it would be interesting stories. Seeing the
ships at night is a beautiful sight.
That is a shame the waters are so
beautiful and the filth and mess
in port. Looks like someone would
clean them up. Worse would be the
smell. I Like the song "I sail my
Ship Alone"..

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It must have been exciting being to sea for the first time. I don't think it would ever be boring no matter how many times you'd had out. I do remember the days of payroll being done in cash. I don't think anyone does that anymore. I've never been to sea or on a ship so I like hearing about your travels. Thanks for sharing your journey.

salemslot9 said...

I love John & Yoko's love <3