Minerva – Second Contract

Friday, June 11th, 2010 at 15:38 | by Alistair Baillie

I finished my second contract onboard Minerva last week, it turned out to be quite interesting with an unscheduled dry dock in the middle!

From where I left off last time, we finished in Antarctica having hit the worst storm I have ever experienced while on our way from Antarctica to the Falkland Islands. It was so bad we had to just put the swell on our stern and maintain minimum speed until it had passed. 2 days pitching and rolling in waves which were the same height as the bridge was not fun!

We eventually pulled into Stanley, Falkland Islands rather late – so late in fact that we proceeded directly alongside a bunker barge to take on additional fuel and then departed a few hours later for Mar del Plata, Argentina.

After leaving South America we returned across the Atlantic to Africa, visiting Senegal and Gambia before heading up to the Canary Islands and back into the Mediterranean.

We arrived into Piraeus a day early and then proceeded to an island called Syros to enter dry dock to allow for repairs on the starboard propellor shaft. After spending 2 days there we returned to Piraeus and collected the passengers who had just disembarked – they had been unable to fly home due to the volcanic ash. We stayed alongside in Piraeus for a few days until flights were arranged for the passengers stuck onboard, then we proceeded back to Syros where over the period of 3 weeks we were in and out of dry dock several times.

This unfortunately meant that we missed going through the Suez Canal to Jordan, but did provide an opportunity to blast and paint the ships hull while they were carrying out maintenance on the damaged propellor shaft.

After leaving dry dock, we went straight to Istanbul and picked up our passengers, for what was my last cruise, and then went up to the Black Sea visiting Ukraine & Bulgaria before back to Turkey, Greece through the Corinth Canal and onto Malta where I flew home after a 3 day handover.

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