Where you be, Woman?

Well, I be on my new ship. In my opinion, getting to a new ship is never too much fun.  Some people prefer to constantly bounce around and sail on whatever is available...I say, 'no thank you'.  While the day to day tasks and responsibilities may remain constant every vessel is different.  It seems to me when you step aboard a new vessel it's do or die.   You simply try not to mess TOO much up...because you know you are going to mess something up.

I joined the vessel just in time to stand my first watch.  Unfortunately, it wasn't a 'cruise' watch....we were topping off cargo.  Of course I had never looked at the cargo piping diagram - and I'm on deck sounding tanks - searching for sounding tubes - pinching down on block valves - and securing IG.  I had just enough 'tanker savvy' in me to avoid looking like a total asshole....but it was close.

I head up to the bridge to make sure that everything is in order for departure (I joined the vessel in Athens, Greece and we were heading to Mersin, Turkey).  It was like stepping onto the bridge of the Star Ship Enterprise.  I have never been on a vessel with as much automation on the bridge before.  I began the pre-departure gear test.  Epic fail.  Apparently, a tech rep had been servicing the number one gyro compass all day....it seems he left before he fixed it....and forgot to tell anyone.  Lordy, alarms up the wazoo!!!!  I couldn't even figure out where they were all coming from.  Of course by this time it's evening and the bridge is dark.  So I have my flash light and I'm frantically searching the control boards looking for the silence buttons.  We ended up 'permanently silencing' the alarms and sailing with a few bugs in the system.  Good times....good times....

The good news is....we made it to Turkey!