Hello, sorry for the delay but I have been rather busy the past days. My parents and sister were onboard for this cruise, and have been here for the past 12 days, and are leaving in 2 days.
Recently the safety officer has taken a lot more interest in what we are doing, and has had us working for him rather than the bosun, having realised that all the bosun was getting us to do was paint and clean.
Last Wednesday I was on the bridge for arrival into Athens from 4am, and was practicing plotting positions onto the chart from radar ranges and bearings. After arrival I spent a few hours with the fire patrol guys doing the weekly check of the fire lockers prior to the crew fire drill. After the drill, I had lunch then went ashore with Viviane and Soaria and went to the Acropolis (some pictures on facebook) for a few hours. We took the â€˜metroâ€™ which is just like the underground in London, only more efficient, clean and easier to negotiate.
I spent the Saturday, which was a day at sea, going round all the fire patrol check points (64 of them) and scanning them to reprogram them into the computer as they had to change some of the checkpoints. After that I went with the safety officer to repair a small leak in one of our tenders. The leak proved to be in an impossible to reach location â€“ behind a fuel tank, and wasnâ€™t accessible through any of the maintenance hatches. Consequently the safety officer and I then removed part of the floor, a few benches and some stairs to gain access to it â€“ it still wasnâ€™t that easy to access even with a big hole in the floor.
The past two days have been spent testing the fire doors onboard, since there were a few faults with sensors, indicators and door closing mechanisms. It wouldnâ€™t have taken so long, but unfortunately there are around 200 fire doors and they all had to be checked individually and causing the least inconvenience to passengers.
Today we are in Malta, the last port of call during this cruise. I spent the morning checking the equipment in the fire lockers then we had the weekly crew fire drill where I was with the â€œon sceneâ€ commander down in the engine room. The other two cadets were acting as members of the boundary cooling party up on deck 3. Afterwards the captain decided to surprise everyone by doing an abandon ship drill. Not in itself unusual, but in this instance we were to treat it as the ship was in port, and therefore the evacuation was done down the gangways onto the pier.
Everyone got off ok, and after a lot of confusion on the pier, 569 crew members were accounted for at their lifeboat and life raft stations.
Then us 3 cadets and the fire patrol Abs had to quickly run round the entire ship checking that all fire doors had closed automatically and report any faults to the bridge.
I have also finally got a video of the â€œOfficers Danceâ€, this is something that is unique to Island Cruises, which is available on my myspace page.
Anyway, it is now getting rough outside with 4-5 meter swells so we are rocking about quite a bit â€“ on the bright side it means the buffet restaurant on deck 11 will be empty so I am off now for desert.