A lot to do on a departure day

Date: 07.03.2024
Schiff: Pelican of London
Position: Karibische See
Nautische Position: 20°04‘.3 N 081° 14‘ W
Etmal: 52nm
Total: 7393 nm

Today was our last day in Cayman Islands so today was departure day.

Departure days are always special because there’s a lot to do and it also means leaving and heading towards a new place. Today we left Cayman Islands and we will arrive in Cuba in one days. Everyone is super excited to finally get to Cuba as we’ve heard so much about it. But before we could leave and get out in the open sea there was a lot we still had to do. Those are the following jobs:

Bring trash ashore: If we can, then we always try to bring everything ashore because otherwise it just builds up and eventually becomes a health hazard because it attracts insects and maggots build up if there are bits of food in the trash.

Mooring teams: There are usually two people from the two watches that aren’t on duty. Two people are forward and two are aft. They loosen the mooringlines and pull them in. Afterwards we need to coil them up and put them away

Lines men: The lines men basically work together with the mooring teams. They first help with taking the gangway in and then move on to taking the mooring lines off the bollards. Usually we have about 2-4 lines men. After all the lines are off the rib picks the linesmen up and brings them back to the ship.

Bowmen: The bowmen sits in the rib and helps with everything that needs to be done. This is mostly throwing the Painter (the front line for making the rib fast) and the stern line (the same line in the back of the ship).

Motorboot wird an Deck gebracht

Gangway: The gangway also has to be stowed away. For this we need the linesmen to pick in up from the key and then the people pull on the guys and slowly take the gangway in. Then it needs disassembling to be stowed. There is also the chance that if we don’t have to possibility to use linesmen to get the gangway up we use the gantlines. We then also need two people to sweat and tail the gantlines to get it up.

Fenders: Same as with the gangway we also need to take the fenders in, stow them and secure them

Nets: One of the first things to do at see is to put up the safety nets. The safety nets are on the welldeck and are meant to prevent people from going overboard. [we really learned to appreciate them in biscay ;)]

Bumpkins: The Bumpkins are the metal “sticks” on the side of the ship. They are used to brace the yards and allow more leverage on the yards.

Safety check list: Generally theirs a lot to pay attention to… for example the water tight doors/hatches have to be closed as soon as we enter/exit port or are about to anchor, as well as in channels or generally in shallow water. We also need to check, that all the dead lights in the lower deck are closed. There’s also lots more to check, but mostly small things so I won’t go into all that.

Emigrating out of the country: This is the Captains duty. He goes ashore and immi / emigrates everyone in/out of the country. In most cases that’s it but some country’s want face to face confirmation which requires us to head ashore as well.

There are also a couple of things that need to be done while ashore and just before leaving but these are not a requirement:

Water: Just before leaving we top up on the water tanks.

Re-Fueling: Generally ashore we also fuel up, as Pelican’s fuel tanks always need filling. This is also quite a big deal which requires the well deck to be closed off and takes about 1-2 Hours

Getting Fuel

Provisioning: If we run out of food then we need to stock up on food. Usually we just load up on fruits and vegetables. Or if we need anything else we get that as well.

And today was just such a day. We helped the professional crew and in the evening we could do what we want. It was a day full of sail setting and bracing which ended with a nice sunset that I watched from the T’Gallant:).

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