Monday, 26 September 2005

Diary of a home-bound sailor.

11th September - 05:43 am

I can't possibly make blog entries right now for the simple reason that there's no way I can connect to the net. So I'm doing the next best thing, making entries anyway with the intention of posting them at some point of time in future.

-Friday, 9th September:

I did make it to breakfast on friday morning, but missed the sunrise. I went up to the helideck as soon as I saw light filter in through my port hole though. Only to find dark clouds stretching the full length and breadth of the sky. I waited, sure that I would see something at least that spoke of the sunrise. After waiting for an hour I realised I'd been mistaken.

Incidentally the crew transfer happened a couple of hours earlier than scheduled, so my last few minutes on board the Trident were furiously busy, trying to make sure all my luggage was packed in waterproof bags, the stuff I'd borrowed was properly returned, etc. The trip across to the Toisa Mariner was pretty swift, the transfer boat ripping through the swells and often flying off a particularly large one to land back on water with a somewhat alarming thump!

Lack of sleep finally caught up with me and I slept like a log in the afternoon.

-Saturday, 10th September:

Started reading a copy of Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy that I'd borrowed off a friend. Slept the major part of the day while the rather substantially smaller size of this ship amplified the rolling and pitching pretty alarmingly. Watched the Sun set, well, till it disappeared behind some clouds that is. But by then I had had enough of the insanely cold wind freezing the left side of my body anyway.

16 hours of sleep in a day can make sleeping in the night a pretty difficult thing to achieve. So I chose to read the book instead. And ended up finishing the first book out of the four. (This is the ultimate edition with all four books in one.) Turned out to be a pretty cool read.

By the time I'd finished I could see light shining through my port hole again! And sure enough the sun was just breaking through in the east! So I finally caught my first sunrise on a ship. And on this momentous occasion I chose to make myself a breakfast of cold-coffee and sandwiches with mayonnaise, cheese slices and a rather dubious looking something called Danish Morello Cherry Extract. Now I guess I'll turn in, and hopefully wake up for lunch :P.

12th September - 03:24 am

-Sunday, 11th September:

I didn't wake up for lunch. In fact I did wake up, but the desire to just turn over and fall asleep again was so strong, I chose to give in :D. Woke up late in the afternoon instead, feeling ravenously hungry.

Spent whatever time was left in the day watching the swelling sea smash against the Mariner's bows and rise up as tall white sheets of fine mist. In fact I was spending as much time looking over the guard rail as ducking under the flying spray. Didn't quite succeed in dodging all the time though.

Somehow, sunsets seem to be a lot colder than sunrises...

Oh, we shifted back one hour today, difference between Sakhalin time and Japan time. Should be reaching Wakkanai sometime tomorrow, or maybe early day after. Looking forward to setting my feet on solid land for a change! And also to sleeping in a bed that doesn't move :-<.

Fun fact of the day: seamen (at least on this ship) have holidays on Sundays, and only the officers and engineers work!! So technically, if the ship starts sinking the Bo'sun might very well go 'It's a Sunday, I won't start the lifeboat'! Or maybe not.

13th September - 12:05 am

-Monday, 12th September:

Caught the sunrise again, and rather remarkably, came across an abrupt stretch of land on the starboard side. All this was early in the day,before I went to sleep. By the time I had woken up a couple of hours later, a thick fog and driving rain had blanketed the surroundings. We reached land in the afternoon! Once the ship had pulled alongside the jetty, we went for a walk, on solid land after more than a month! The rain was a bother though. Spending the night in the Mariner itself before catching my flight for Tokyo tomorrow. My last night in a bunk for rather quite a while I think.

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