“Your request to be considered under the COVID-19 travel ban exception process has not been successful. There is no right of appeal."
Don’t ask, “Why?” ask, “Why not?”
They sold my ship in February. It was Friday, in mid-Pacific. The captain read us the email just before dinner. Most of the crew were somewhere between upset and angry, but I just felt relieved, as if I’d been freed from a prison I hadn’t realised I was in. The company offered me a transfer... Continue Reading →
Rule 3: Don’t blow up the ship
Photo by Jakub Skafiriak on Unsplash I stared at the third mate. “Is this a joke? Because it’s Christmas, you know, not April Fool’s Day.” He shrugged. We stared down at the night orders. The first part was reasonable enough: follow the cargo plan, pump ballast when necessary, don’t break the ship in half, don’t blow... Continue Reading →
One Australian, Twenty Chinese, and a Mooring Winch…
The captain stared down from the bridge and pulled out his radio. “Aft, bridge: what on earth is going on down there?” I was doing my best not to look at the one Australian and twenty Chinese men standing in the snow, urinating on the aft mooring winch. I pulled a glove off and fumbled... Continue Reading →
The Merchant Navy FAQ
I’ve been in various sectors of the merchant navy since 1996. People often ask me about life at sea. Here's a collection of the answers.