Songs of the Sea: Farewell Shanty

My recent post¬†(re-blogged from Indian Rocks Bridge) about climbing aloft on the Sorlandet got me thinking of those beautiful square riggers. I found this video yesterday. I love the pictures! Such beautiful ships!! It’s a traditional song but has recently been ‘discovered’ (at least according to some of the musical forums). Here’s a shanty to listen to the next time you’re getting underway. ūüėČ

Farewell Shanty

It’s time to go now ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Haul away your anchor (x2) ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†‘Tis our sailing time

Get some sail upon her ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Haul away your halyards (x2) ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†‘Tis our sailing time

Get her on her course now ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† Haul away your foresheets (x2) ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ‘Tis our sailing time

Waves are surging under                                                                                             Haul away down-channel (x2)                                                                                           On the evening tide

When my days are over                                                                                               Haul away for Heaven (x2)                                                                                               God be by my side (x2)

PS- the Statsraad Lehmkuhl is another of the ships the Oceanics School chartered for our sailtraining. I missed this one too. ūüė¶ I got to sail the Ariadne and the brigantine Phoenix. They were all beautiful ships but not quite the same experience as to sail a full rigged ship.

Maybe I’ll do a couple of posts explaining the different ship types (sail plans). Would you like that? In the meantime, here’s a link to a site one of my classmates put online about our school. If you look closely, you can see me in some of the photos. Yeah, I still look pretty much the same. ūüôā

111 Feet Up‚ÄďClimbing the Main Mast of a Fully-Rigged Tall Ship ‚Ķ at 9 Knots

I got this post from Gcaptain a while ago and was going to¬†post on¬†my blog¬†about it. Indian Rocks Bridge beat me to it, so I’ll just re-blog. ūüôā

PS: Indian Rocks bridge (not the blogger, but the actual bridge) is located very close to where I lived when we first moved to FL. I spent a lot of time at the shipyard there working on our schooner the Island Girl.

On another note, the Oceanics School (where I went to high school) used the Sorlandet for their school ship after I graduated. SO sorry I missed it!

Indian Rocks Bridge

Here‚Äôs a¬†video posted by Norway‚Äôs Stiftelsen Fullriggeren S√łrlandet academy showing first-person view of a climb up the main mast of the world‚Äôs oldest full-rigged tall ship S√łrlandet.‚ĶMORE


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Sunset Section 215

I don’t know about you, but I’m glad the Senate let the domestic spy program (part of the most bogusly named PATRIOT act) where they collect ALL of YOUR phone records, internet records, etc sunset. I hope to hell the congress will get together and just let it die! Do NOT replace it with the so-called “Freedom Act” (another falsely named bill). These laws are completely unconstitutional and totally unjustified. On top of that they’re just plain wrong. Didn’t we used to hate NAZI Germany and Soviet Russia for treating their people this way? It was wrong when they did it and it is JUST AS WRONG now when WE do it!

I don’t know about you, but I don’t believe for 1 New York second that the fact that the government is not allowed by law to spy on any American citizen without a valid warrant will stop them from continuing to spy on whoever the hell they want, whenever they damn well feel like it, and warrants be damned!

It has ALWAYS been against the law! The Constitution is still the supreme law of the land and no matter what happens, we should NEVER, EVER trade away our freedoms. I’m not sure about Rand Paul, but he’s most definitely on the right side on this issue. I thank him for his filibuster efforts, I think he did some good.

Sad to say, but most of¬†‘our leaders’ were slavering over the possibilities after 9-11. They jumped on that disaster like it was manna from heaven! They got everything they’d been asking for- asking for decades! And the people and even most of¬†our congressmen were wise to their game. They¬†refused to violate their oath of office and let their fears overcome their common sense and violate the rights of every American.

People now are getting so used to this state of affairs, like it’s just normal, it’s no big deal. People bring up that stupid old argument , “well, if you’re not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about”. I call a BIG LOUD BULLSHIT on that tired old excuse! It IS a big deal!

If you don’t think there’s¬†anything wrong with spying on your friends, family and neighbors, digging into every little detail of their lives, then I say there’s something seriously wrong with YOU!

I think it’s LONG past time we all say enough of this BS! Give us back our rights and give them back NOW! The government has NO reason to spy on anyone if they can’t find enough ‘evidence’ to convince¬†a court to give them a warrant to do it. Especially considering that almost all courts are just rubber stamps these days.

Let the spying programs sunset, let the ENTIRE PATRIOT Act expire! Get rid of the NDAA, the NSA and the TSA while we’re at it. We would ALL be a whole lot better off. We need to stop letting our FEAR rule (and ruin) our lives!

Norms Thursday Doors

Norm does a photo challenge on ‘doors’ every Thursday. I like to get into these things when I can.

Here’s a pretty blue door. I took this picture last year while I was in Aberdeen for the Freefall Lifeboat Course. It was in an area of town called Footdee, where they moved all the fishermen years ago. This picture is of one of the fishermen’s sheds, where they work on their nets, etc.

Another Airport

I made it to London. I have another flight to Frankfurt and then one more to Luanda. It’s been a rough couple of days.

Even when I think I’m almost caught up with things, shit happens and I wind up frantically trying to get to the airport on time to make my flight.

This trip was no different. I had planned on leaving by 1600, that should have me to the airport by 1730. But I got delayed by a few phone calls (why doesn’t anybody ever call me except when I’m in a rush to get out the door?).

My accountant called me a couple of times about my estimated tax payment which is due by June 15, so I had to write a check before I left. To do that, I had to go online and transfer money.

Just a bunch of little things like that, but they added up and I didn’t get out of the house til about 1645. I was pretty lucky and didn’t hit the heavy traffic til I was almost downtown and it was only for about a half hour. I got to the airport about 1830. My flight wasn’t departing til 2045, so I still had plenty of time.

I had to meet the courier outside the airport to pick up my visa, that took another few minutes and then when I went to check in, there was some kind of problem. Somehow they had 2 reservations for me. I had gone online the night before and bought an upgrade for the flight to London. It wouldn’t let me do anything with the rest of the flight, but at least I got a few hours in relative comfort.

Anyway, I did check last night, and the computer showed my upgrade had gone through¬†with my new seat. It wouldn’t let me check in, since you have to show your passport to somebody in person when you fly overseas now. So, when I got to the airport, they were checking me in but just to economy class. It took quite a while to get that straightened out.

By the time I got my boarding passes and through security, I only had about a half hour before the flight started boarding. I got to the lounge to hang out, but it was packed. At least I got a little snack (they’ve improved their offerings- they had soup and salads- usually they only have cheese and¬†crackers).

I was so wiped out when I got on the plane, I was SO glad I had that opportunity to have at least a little comfort for the flight. (United has ice cream sundaes for dessert where you can choose your own toppings and I really enjoyed that. ūüôā

There was a lot of turbulence, but even so I managed to get a couple of hours of good sleep. I feel much better today and hoping the rest of the trip goes OK.

Is there anybody out there now who actually still enjoys flying? I remember when I did. I actually used to look forward to it. Seems like it was such a long time ago, but it was really only after 9-11 when it got soooooo bad!

I really wish people would not have let them punish ALL of us forever over that. Yeah, it was terrible, it should never have happened, but WE have done more to destroy our freedoms than the terrorists ever could have dreamed of. ūüė¶

Maritime Day 2015

Another Memorial Day weekend has passed. I’m not much for holidays. I did go up to Galveston for the National Maritime Day Commemoration Ceremony last week. It’s pretty sad to say it, but I¬†probably would have forgotten it myself if I hadn’t gotten a couple of reminders from friends.

Galveston Coast Guard keepers of the flags

Galveston Coast Guard keepers of the flags

Since I am a merchant marine and have been almost my whole life, I feel like I should at least remember this day and the reason for it. Everyone else celebrates Memorial Day for the ‘armed’ services and forgets about all the Merchant Marine has done for the country (and still does, EVERY DAY).

Galveston had their celebration on Thursday, even though the official day is on May 22.

I was going to try and get there early enough to help man a ‘water table’ for the kids coming up to see all the ships, but it took longer than I expected to take care of my property tax protest in Angleton. I would have liked to take a tour myself, the General Rudder from Texas A&M was dockside, the Elissa was right next door, there were a couple of other ships/boats around and also the Ocean Star oil rig.

By the time I got there, the actual ceremony was about to start. Continue reading

Kids Love ‚Äúland shrimp‚ÄĚ?

In which I feed my children ‚Äúland shrimp‚ÄĚ | Grist.

I see this more and more. Media promoting bug eating as a great idea to save the planet.

Yeah, if we’ll all just¬†substitute a few giant roaches, beetles, or crickets¬†instead of¬†a nice juicy rib-eye, we can reverse climate change, save more wilderness, feed the starving children and as a bonus we would even lose a few pounds!

I suppose if I had nothing else to eat, for a loooong time,¬†I would eventually¬†eat the bugs. It’s just the whole idea of it that makes me squirmy. And I really don’t like the insinuation that we all really ought to switch to bugs over steaks, to lower our standards of living, to help ‘save the planet’.

Why the hell can’t we¬†seriously discuss limiting the human population for a¬†change. Just get people to use birth control for a while! Try something that would be GOOD for everyone here already AND the planet, AND would actually help!

I’ve tried them (bugs)¬†before. Would you do it?

What do you think about lowering your living standards so that we can just keep on having more and more people live on the earth (and nothing else)? Do you think it’s a better idea to try and get everyone here already to ‘live light’ (eating bugs, no cars, serious restrictions on¬†ALL energy¬†use, etc),¬†or get the people here already to limit their childbearing so that eventually we can reduce the human population so that everyone here can have a GOOD life, and still have room for wilderness and all the other creatures that depend on it?

Me? I’m 100% for the birth control!

Weather Worked Out

Just got home from a day out on the bay. We lucked out and had a great day out sailing. The weather co-operated and we didn’t get rained on. Only a couple of small sprinkles. ūüôā

I’ll write more later (and post photos). I’m beat!

Saturday Sail

I’m going¬†sailing again tomorrow. I signed up to go¬†a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to get at least a couple of sails in while I was home this time. My time¬†off work is¬†running out¬†way too fast. I hope the weather holds!

Last I checked, it’s supposed to rain. I’m keeping my fingers crossed and hoping it doesn’t.¬†The wind should be just about perfect for a day out on the bay. I’m not going to quit if we get a little sprinkle, but I don’t really enjoy being outside in a hard rain either.

I really hate it when my glasses get wet and fogged up¬†and I can’t see!

I’d better get to sleep soon. I wish I didn’t have to get up so early to do these trips! To be on time at the dock, I’ll need to get out of the house by no later than 0900. That’s cutting it close.

So, I ought to get up at 0600 to get everything done before I leave. Ugh! ūüė¶

Busy in Houston

I came up to Houston yesterday for a meeting of the Nautical Institute about DP (Dynamic Positioning). I figured since I am a DP operator (DPO), I ought to go and see what they were talking about.

It was actually pretty interesting. I saw quite a few old friends and also got to ask a few questions of the panel. I brought up some of my concerns about the new scheme the NI has brought out on certification of DPOs. I hope the discussion there will cause some serious thinking about some of the problems with this new scheme (more on this later).

I got out of the meeting about 1630 and met up with some friends for dinner. We went to the “Grand Lux Caf√©” over by the Galleria. We sat outside so we could smoke, but they STILL had to complain! I thought that’s why they had outdoor areas now. The food was good, but overpriced. I had no idea til I saw the¬†bill, but it was over $100 for 3 of us (and only 1 drink each)!¬†Next time I’ll stick to the Cheesecake Factory.

I stayed overnight so I could get up early to go get my visa for Angola, I’m supposed to be going back to the ship over there on Monday. They want me to be there by 0800 and I really didn’t feel like dealing with horrible Houston traffic for 2 hours first thing in the morning. Especially when I’ll be dealing with government officials! Better to spend the money for a good nights sleep.

So, I’m hoping it won’t take all day, waiting around the embassy. I’d like to check out some other things while I’m up here in Houston. Maybe go to the zoo later. Or a museum?

Saturday Sails

I got to go out sailing again yesterday! I signed up for next Saturday too. ūüôā

Some people think I must be nuts. They wonder how I can spend all my time at work on various vessels, at sea somewhere, and then come home and I can’t wait to get back out on another boat to go sailing?

All I can say is: those people just¬†aren’t sailors!

Song of the Sea: The Water is Wide

This is such a beautiful song. It was a favorite in the 60’s when Bob Dylan and Joan Baez performed it. Joan Baez does the song with the Indigo Girls in this version. It’s still a¬†beautiful song even tho they don’t play it on the radio anymore.

(The lyrics are slightly different in this version.)

The Water Is Wide- traditional, performed by Joan Baez (and the Indigo Girls)

The water is wide, I cannot get over
Neither have I wings to fly
Give me a boat that can carry two
And both shall cross my true love and I

I leaned my back against an oak
Thinking it was a mighty tree
But first it bent and then it broke
So did my love prove false to me

I put my hand in some soft bush
Thinking the sweetest flower to find
I pricked my finger to the bone
And left the sweetest flower behind

Oh, love is handsome and love is kind
Gay as a jewel when it is new
But love grows old and waxes cold
And fades away like the morning dew

The water is wide, I cannot get over
Neither have I wings to fly
Give me a boat that can carry two
And both shall cross my true love and I

4 Things To Change Your Life in 10 Minutes

I’ve been reading this book lately. It’s called “The Choose Yourself Guide to Wealth” by James Altucher. I really like his down to earth style¬†and his sense of humor. I admire his ability to live¬†his life the way HE chooses, and I am thankful that he decided to share his lessons in how he got to that point.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that individual liberty and personal freedom are very important to me too. I’m trying hard to find any possible way to get out of the rat race and find a way to live my life the way I want to instead of being stuck doing things the way everybody else thinks is best, only¬†so I can¬†stay out of jail!

I read his earlier book “Choose Yourself” a while ago and I thought he had a lot of good points. I still think so.

I have been working on his “Daily Practice” that he explains in¬†“Choose Yourself“.¬†He means to take care of your mental, spiritual, emotional and physical needs every day. Makes sense to me, but still hard for me to put into practice every single day.

Today, I read a chapter he calls “Four Things I Do That Can Change Your Life In The Next Ten Minutes”.

Someone asked him “what can I learn in the next 10 minutes that will be useful the rest of my life?”

I thought, what a great question! Here’s what James had to say as an answer…

“I can show you four insanely stupid things that will make the rest of your life better. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t.”

Here are the 4 things:

  1. Use $2 bills
  2. Wear a doctors coat
  3. Use waiters pads
  4. Watch standup comedy

He does give a little explanation for why he does these 4 things and why they work for him. I’m kind-of interested in what you may think the reasons are. ūüėČ

What do you think about those 4 things? Do you have any suggestions of your own? Would you do his? Why or why not? I think I’m going to give it a try, have to go find me some waiters pads and a Drs coat!

Norms Thursday Doors

Norm does a photo challenge on ‘doors’ every Thursday. I like to get into these things when I can.

Here’s my ‘door’ picture for this week. I took it outside the ‘Little Hollywood Land” Movie Set Museum in Kanab, Utah.

I had taken a trip to Las Vegas for the Freedom Fest a couple of years ago and when it was finished, I rented a car and drove up to do some sightseeing. I went to Grand Canyon (North Rim), Bryce Canyon and Zion  National Parks.

I had a great time wandering around, hiking through the gorgeous scenery and finding quirky little places like this to stop. ūüôā

Old Film Photos

I’m asking for advice here. I was out today getting those photos from the other day developed. I figured while I was at it, I would take some of my old film in to get it digitized.

I brought in 6 rolls of (already developed) film, type Kodak Advantix 400 25 exposure “one time use camera film cassette”. The store (Walgreens) told me they could only get the film to come out of 1 of the reels and so they couldn’t do anything with the other 5.

market in Turkey

Here’s one of a market in Turkey

Does anyone know of any tricks, techniques, gizmos, etc. to get this film out of their canisters so it can be digitized? Or maybe you know of some other store that would be better at it than Walgreens?

I already asked if I could just break open the film reels myself, but they didn’t seem to think they would be able to do anything with the film then. For some reason I’m not clear on, it has to stay on the reel, in the canister.

Any clues would be appreciated! Thanks!

She Saw Some Seamen!

lol! ūüėČ Now a days the politically correct term is seafarer or mariner.

I was at the Seamans Center in Freeport on Tuesday. I stopped by there to drop off¬†a pile of magazines, see who’s around and say hi. I do that whenever I’ve collected a bunch every month or 2. The sailors like to look at them even if they might not be able to read English very well.

I was¬†surprised to see there were actually some seamen around. Usually when I go there’s nobody there but the local volunteers (most are old veterans who remember the role of the Merchant Marine in their wars).

Turns out there was a chemical tanker in port and¬†a few¬†of the crew actually had enough time to go ashore. That doesn’t happen very often any more. Most deep sea crews will stay aboard for 6, 9, 12, 18 months before their contract is up and they can go home. Most docks now are really far out of town, they don’t make it easy for the ships crews to leave the ship (sometimes they make it impossible), and so¬†the crews are extremely isolated for months on end.

That’s why the seamans centers are so important and so appreciated by sailors around the world. It’s a place where we can get off the ship, get online, buy phone cards, call home, find a souvenir, send a postcard, etc. It’s a place¬†for us to be comfortable and welcomed in a strange¬†port. They know what we do and how we are.¬†They’re not scared off by our tattoos, rough clothing or language. They have pool tables and comfortable chairs to relax in. Some have restaurants and bars (not this one).¬†The Freeport Center has free coffee and cookies and plenty of magazines. ūüėČ They’ll even take the crews out to Walmart or the mall so they can go shopping.

I was happy to see that this particular¬†ship had a couple of ladies on there and even a little boy. Lots of foreign companies still do allow the crew to bring their families along (like we used to). I’m sure it helps the families¬†stay together and should help a lot with crew retention too. Of course, those countries don’t have the tradition of sueing everybody for every little thing either. ūüė¶

I’m always glad to go down there and visit. I volunteer when I have time. I love to meet the people from all over the world. For instance, this ships crew was from India. They were headed through the Panama Canal and then to Taiwan. The Seamans Center can always use more help! I’m always glad to see one when I get to a new port. I know I’m always welcome and have a place to call my ‘home away from home’.

Sailors are invisible to most people. We used to dock in the center of town and everyone was familiar with ships and sailors. Now, we’ve been pushed out of town, real estate is just too expensive.¬†¬†Now, we just do our work out at sea everyday, all over the world, and no one ever thinks of us or knows what we do. The only time we’re ever noticed is when there’s some kind of maritime disaster. Makes people think it’s terrible out there, the things we do. Actually, there are million of us sailing all day, every day, all over the world. Behind the scenes. Bringing all the things you need from one place to another.¬†Ninety Percent¬†of Everything. It’s a book. Worth a read!

In case you’re interested, I have a page for seamans centers on my blog. It’s a work in progress. If you want to look for one in your neck of the woods, it might be there already. If it’s not, would you mind sending me a link so I can add it to the page. Or if any of you know of any others, please send me the info so I can add them. Thanks! ūüôā

Proving Pictures

I’ve been out doing some errands today. I went around to my rental properties to take some pictures.¬†The taxman is somehow claiming (again)¬†that my properties are all worth SO much more this year than last. Most of them have gone up tens of thousands¬†of dollars in appraised value¬†and some even more than doubled!

Hard to believe? Yeah, it is hard to believe, especially since every single one of them has deteriorated since last year and the market sure as hell has not improved enough so that people are just throwing money at the kind of crap I own!

So, I was out taking pictures to prove to the tax assessors that they should not appraise my properties at such high values. No one in their right mind would offer anywhere near the price they claim my property is worth!

It really irks me that I have to do this EVERY year! I can only imagine how many people just can’t get out and around and do all the things necessary to protest every year. How many people wind up losing their property because of this crap!¬†I can only imagine how much MORE of my money would go down the drain every single year if I wasn’t able to get down there to argue with them every single year!

I’m sure the tax guys are happy as hell that most people just never can get around to protesting the exorbitant property taxes we have around here. I can’t believe how much money is totally WASTED around here on total BS! Things we do NOT need, but make people feel better. The people who run this country/county/city/town just love to scare the hell out of people by telling them if they don’t raise the taxes then things will just go straight to hell! What a hell of a scam they have going on!

Then the cities get in on the act and fine the hell out of people for not doing the yard work and home maintenance up to their required standards. Knowing full well that they’ve made it too expensive for most everyone to comply. With all the added rules and regulations causing prices to skyrocket to do the work! ¬†Eventually, the city comes around and condemns your property and then they¬†steal it for a song!

Yeah, hard to believe. Little power hungry authoritarian ‘elites’ making decisions that completely change the course of someone else’s life! This used to be a free country. Not so much anymore. You think you own property here? Think again when your property tax comes due!

I just HOPE all my photos will prove that my property is NOT worth as much as they claim! I’m fighting a losing battle, my property has already gone up more than double since I bought it in 2005! I’m sure some people think that’s a good thing. Yeah, it might be IF you’re trying to sell. If you’re not selling, its a really BAD thing!

Songs of the Sea: Shark Attack

I thought this was about sharks, you know, the kind that swim in the sea. But actually, it’s about a different kind of shark. The kind that lives on land. The kind we REALLY need to worry about.

I never heard this group (Wailing Souls) before, but I love this song. I really love reggae music anyway, and this song has lyrics worth paying attention to. The video reminded me of a great book I read a few years ago.

It’s called Confessions of an Economic Hitman¬†by John Perkins. Anyone who’s interested in what’s going on in the world today will get a real education if they read it. I thought it was a great book and should be taught in all our schools (but of course that will NEVER happen!).

I know most of you absolutely HATE it when I start going off on politics and my philosophy of liberty and freedom for all. But I’m hoping it’s a short enough video you might just take a look.

Let me know what you think. Of the music. And the video (the political one- the one by Perkins!) ūüėČ

Shark Attack- Wailing Soul

When you hear this ya one Wailing Soul you know fe true
yeah man
When you hear this ya one ya Wailing Soul you no fe joke (repeat)

Better stop this cultural diffusion
Spreading fear & confusion
Playing cloak & dagger wars
Losing what you fighting for

Back back, coming with a double attack
Step back, here comes the shark attack (x2)

What more do they want?
They have got all they need
Yet they turn their backs
On the hands that feeds them

Back back, coming with a double attack
Step back, here comes the shark attack (x2)

Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
yeah yeah yeah

Yes it’s a new world order, oh yeah
Another new world order, oh yeah
A wicked world order, oh yeah
A new world order, oh yeah

Back back, coming with a double attack
Step back, here comes the shark attack (x2)

Better stop this cultural diffusion
Spreading fear & confusion
Playing cloak & dagger wars
Losing what you fighting for

Back back, coming with a double attack
Step back, here comes the shark attack (x2)

Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
yeah yeah yeah

Yes it’s a new world order, oh yeah
Another new world order, oh yeah
A crucial world order, oh yeah
A wicked world order, oh yeah

Back back, coming with a double attack
Step back, here comes the shark attack (x2)

Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
Wo wo wo wo yeah yeah
yeah yeah yeah

Yes it’s a new world order, oh yeah
Another new world order, oh yeah
A crucial world order, oh yeah
A wicked world order, oh yeah (repeat fade)

Happy Hour OTC

Part of the reason I haven’t been getting much done since I’ve been home this trip is the fact that I went to the OTC last week and the Happy Hour afterwards.

The one I went to on Tuesday is just one of many similar parties put on by various companies to make it ‘easy to do business’. Hey, I’m all for that!

This one¬†was sponsored by Wilhelmsen (ships service) for the USMAAA (Kings Point grads). No, I didn’t graduate from Kings Point. I did apply after I graduated from high school on the sailing ships and decided I wanted to become a professional mariner. Too bad they turned me down because I was “too fat”.

Too fat for WHAT?

They couldn’t give me a good answer for that, neither could the Navy when I tried them afterwards. Oh well, I found ways to sail without either Kings Point OR the Navy. It just took me about 10 times longer to reach my goal of Unlimited Master. Too bad things have deteriorated so much in that time that it’s no longer worth being a ships master. ūüė¶

It’s really great that the USMMAAA doesn’t actually require you to have gone to KP. They’re actually open to any member of the maritime community. I joined them a couple of years ago. I like to go to their events when I can.

This particular event was a happy hour held at Pappasito’s right around the corner from the OTC. They had a nice buffet with Mexican favorites like tortillas, burritos, quesadillas and plenty of beer and margaritas to wash it all down.

I met some interesting new people there and caught up with some old friends. That’s always my favorite part of these things. I love to learn more about all kinds of maritime subjects, but I really like to meet all the interesting people there and hear their stories. Some of them have been sailing even longer than I have!

I was having such a great time, I stayed a little longer than I should have. I didn’t get home til late and I’ve been making up for that late night ever since.

Can’t wait for the next one! ūüėČ

OTC 2015

I haven’t really done much since I got home. I just can’t seem to get over the feeling of being so tired. I’ve been super lazy, but I did get out to go to the OTC in Houston on Tuesday.

I wanted to see all the neat new stuff they always have there. It’s a really great place to learn about what’s happening in the oilfield and get a feel for¬†what the work situation will be¬†like¬†over the next year or so. I wasn’t able to go last year when it broke all records, but considering the price of oil and the feelings of most oilfield workers I’ve heard from, it did pretty good this year.

One thing they changed this year and I definitely did NOT like, was that they banned all photography. I really have no idea why they would do that and for someone that likes taking pictures as much as I do, it really SUCKS. Here’s a picture of the outside of the NRG center which is where the OTC is held in Houston¬†every year.

I went to a¬†lunch presentation about DP (Marine Technology for Dynamic Positioning). It seemed to be mostly promoting the German companies involved in the marine industries (MAN, Schottel, L-3) and wasn’t at all what I was expecting. I did meet some interesting tablemates: a couple of guys from Malaysia, a couple more from Turkey and an engineer¬†from Paragon Drilling (which recently split off from Noble).

I wandered around for a few hours checking out all the displays. I was especially interested in the ones with new vessels coming out. I liked the ones from Ceona, McDermott, Boa and Subsea 7. I talked to a few people at the booths about future hiring possibilities. Sad to say (tho not unexpected in this market), most were not looking for any new crew.

I did meet a recruiter from Swift. They had a booth outside and were the only ones I met who were very actively looking for people to sign on. I was happy to talk over job prospects in their air conditioned tent over a beer. My feet were starting to ache after 4-5 hours of walking around!

All in all an interesting day, but if I’m home again next year I’ll go on Thursday when it’s FREE!