Wednesday, September 05, 2012

The Other side of the Life At Sea

Playing Basketball at Sea
Most of the Seafarer's have a love a hate relationship with the sea and as a wife who sailed with them, the feeling is mutual. Before my eyes, I can see how the sea causes many sorrows and hardships to come upon them, especially during winter time and rough seas, but they lived their entire life facing the toils of the sea, where the income is good enough to give a comfortable life of their love ones back home.
Nevertheless, their skills will not be harnessed if they are afraid to lose sight of the shore, giving some truth to the African proverb that "a smooth sea doesn't make a seafarer skillful."  The formidable strength of character shown by them in making it through against all odds, is admirable.
Being at sea, for days doing the usual routine of work makes life boring and made the men onboard home sick. Fighting the loneliness of a 19-day sea passage from US East Coast to South Africa, is quite a daunting task. However, blessed with a favorable weather, with the food inventory on board permitting and a space on deck, it allowed them to enjoy some moments of fun and a good bonding time to transcend culture, religion, and the color of their skin.
How is life onboard a ship with-out alcohol? A quick glimpse on how they unwind at sea were captured in the pictures below:
Karaoke is an all time favorite past time
Playing the Darts killer game, tested their skills to hit their target numbers
Tug of war
Bingo Socials
The roasted suckling pig
After the games, they were all exhausted and replenished their energies, feasting on the succulent roasted pig and other food items prepared by the Galley staff. The event surely made up their day and receiving the Cash's prizes  awarded to the winners  delighted them so much. Thanks to the  company ship's welfare fund and from the generous officers who donated some amount to augment the games' prizes adding more perks and fun to the occasion.
Life's milestone celebration was also held onboard when the wives sailed with the Officers to mark important events of their marital bliss and life respectively... 
My 50th birthday bash
Celebrating 3E's 18th Wedding Anniversary
The animal sound grouping game brought the house down in laughter.
Sharing these events while at sea via some social net working site through the internet onboard, shortens the distance from sea to shore. They are just one click away. However, they are always advised to make only responsible postings. Seeing the nice comments and likes in their pictures posted puts a smile in their faces after a hard days work on deck, in the engine room and doing the bridge watch keeping duties. Being in touch with their family and friends online through Skpe, Viber, Ym and others are a great way to relieve stress while at sea. What a simple joy, for the humble men with a brave heart.
It is always a privilege to the chosen few to avail of the family sailing benefit, not only to see the world free but also to build memories irrespective of location. Indeed, Life is short, take me when you can, and I will sail with you, if  I can, so we can make the best of time.

Disclaimer: The contents herein are views of my own and the photos are my personal shots with the Officers and crew

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