Sunday, April 22, 2012

semi-permanent bedhead

It's Sunday afternoon as I type, and I am watching the Bruins game, drinking an energy drink and generally enjoying not being rained on, as we've got a Nor'easter settling in on her haunches to rinse the rust dust off our decks. I had forgotten how filthy everything gets here- Philadelphia has some foul air quality courtesy of the prevailing wind bringing in all the pollution and airborn particulates from the Ohio valley and the upstream portion of the Rust Belt. The end result is that light rains make my decks far dirtier than they were before the rain. Today's rains are NOT light however, and I have hope that for a few days after the weather passes, anyone on deck won't need goggles when we cross the eye of the wind while underway.

   As I started to write, though, I'm fresh out of bed. Although we're in the best place possible with shit weather bearing down (the wind coming later is reputed to be quite nautical in force and duration), namely, up a river and moored to a lay berth with no operations scheduled, I don't like the sound of the wind whipping through our antennas one deck overhead, and I tend to sleep lightly. Something about spending almost 10 years on a real bitch of a ship that griped and rolled in any kind of a sea. Though my days on the New River are gone, the memories of being vaulted, mattress and all, out of my bunk and sailed 10 feet or so across my room to land like a bug on a windshield on the far side of my room... well, that stays with you.
    At any rate, we've been sitting for too long. I haven't combed my hair in I don't know how long.
 On Tuesday, I'll be relieved here, scheduled  for 2 weeks of I&I (Intercourse and Intoxication) (No one tell my wife about that one, or there'll be bloody little of either)... or would be, if I wasn't working over. I'm going to New York for 2 weeks, there to work one of the cadillacs of my employer's fleet, the newest and most ergonomically-friendly bunker barge they own. So, while I'd rather be home, certainly, this means that this will be a 10-week hitch for me, as I'll come back here when my 2 weeks are up, there to take up another 4 weeks of doing whatever it is we do.

 Oh, and, speaking of, some never before seen shots from the S.S. New River. The last photo is a fish-eye lens shot giving you a view of the 70' athwartships sweep of the forward bridge. You don't see any electronics because the radars and plotting computer are stand-alone cabinet units mounted in the after part of the bridge- the cabinets are visible in the picture, but the radars are not. Since she was a steamship, with throttle control being carried out down in the engine room, there is little evidence of technology.

No comments: