Saturday, May 8, 2010

with reason comes age

I may not be getting more wise in proportion to tempus fugit, but some things are hard to ignore.

I'm feeling pissy today. I went to bed after a long night, extremely tired, and slept lightly due to a LOT of noise and motion from the chop that worked up in the mid-morning. When I got out of bed in the late afternoon, I found that cargo operations had been shut down 'for weather' for a few hours. I went outside and found gusty winds... but not what I would call dangerous winds by any means.
Here's where things get tricky. I am obligated to support my partner on here, because he was the man who put pen to paper and took responsibility for the operation while I was in my bunk being shaken like a baby in the hands of a British nanny. As soon as I walked outside after getting out of bed, though... well, we started up soon after, leaving me with a bad, bad taste in my mouth.

I chalk today up to a difference in age and expertise. I am never willing to chance disaster in the name of expediency, but I've also been on hand for a lot of marginal weather, both in my former career as a commercial fisherman, and on board a ship, as well. Without talking out of school, I suspect that the approach and tie-up to the ATB we're bunkering was very challenging, and made my opposite skittish... and that's OK. The wind was gusting very strongly, and if there's any second-guessing to be made, it's at the tug captain's choice to come alongside another vessel in high winds, knowing that the weather would calm as soon as the front passed. At the end of the day, my shipmate operated in a safe manner, which is my chief concern. My opposite is a brown-water tankerman- not comfortable with open water by any means. I'm respectful of wind and current, but there are no heavy seas in this river- I'd guess that, while I am not getting wiser in proportion to the march of time, my ability to judge a situation, or perhaps simply my self-confidence in assessing the scene, has brought me to a point where I'm comfortable making the call with the Mark I eyeball.

No comments: