M/T CT Sky. I was Chief Officer onboard between 10th of January 2004 and 16th of February 2004.


CT Sky
CT Sky
Photo from Broström's web page  Without permission

CT Sky is a chemical tanker and she was built 1981 in Aler Tröndelag, Trondheim, Norway . She is 101,4m long and 15,9m wide with a summer draft of 7,47m. (7,31m winter)
From bottom of the keel to mast top its 28m.
She's on 6275 DWT and she loads 5620,8m³ (98%) in 19 tanks with possibilities to have 7 segregations . She has 19 FRAMO pumps.
She have 7 stainles steel center tanks, 1-6 and #2 is P/S. She only loads in the CT. We also load in 4P/S wing tanks when loading Caustic soda. The coating in the other wing tanks are in poor condition, 3P/S is used for ballast.
Main engine is a MAK on 2600 KW and she makes a speed of 12,5 knots

I had ordered my wake up call when I checked in on my hotel, 9 o'clock in the morning. I
Winter road
had a quick breakfast. I had to pick up my rented car at 10 o'clock. I drove back to the hotel to pick up my luggage. I asked them to prepare my bill while I went to the room for my bags. I had one big (I mean huge) hockey bag, 1 weekend bag and my computer. After a lot of hassle I got all my bags to the lobby.
I paid the bill and I went away with the
car to pick up my friend in Mölndal, a suburb to Gothenburg. I arrived at 1035 and he was waiting at the parking place. I swapped seat to the passenger seat, I don't like to drive and off we drove.

We stopped to buy some news paper before leaving Gothenburg. We left just after 11 o'clock and we passed a winter landscape. It was much snow, but the road were dry so
we were hauling ass. It was beautiful with all the snow and the big forest. When we passed Värnamo we stopped at Burger King drive in counter.
We got 2 chocolate shakes. On a long journey it's important to get all the right vitamins and we don't want to be dehydrated. Stay nimble when you drive your car!

We arrived to Kalmar around 2 o'clock in the afternoon. We went
Drive in
to my friends apartment and we got my winter equipment and my mail. Mostly bills.
We went to a restaurant for a meal, lamb on rack, yummy!
It was very cold so I was happy to get some warm clothes, we stopped at 1 shop and bought new socks for me as well. Now I was ready for CT Sky. We drove towards Mönsterås. There should be a big paper-mill between Mönsterås and Oskarshamn. Captain told me that I should turn right at the sign " Mönsterås paper-mill ", after passing Mönsterås on the way to Oskarshamn, when I called the ship before leaving Gothenburg.
We stopped in Mönsterås and asked for the paper-mill.
- Continue towards Oskarshamn until you reach the sign " Mönsterås paper-mill ".
- Thank you, I said.
When we came to Oskarshamn we started to suspect that there was something fishy with the sign " Mönsterås paper-mill ". I called the ship again and 1 of the locals said that we should turn at the sign " Mönsterås paper-mill "
-Yeah yeah, there is no sign, I said.
On the way back we passed a sign with Södra timber terminal and we tested that way. In the middle of the forest there was a sign showing us to Södra cell terminal. Hmm, cell might be short for cellulose (paper). Finally we came to the ship.

Well, comparing with Bro Anton CT Star is like a backward cousin from Hicksville.
My friend helped me with my bags and he left for Gothenburg. I introduced my self and made a call to Sue.
- Are you using you uniform?
- No, we don't need uniform on this ship, I said.
-Why?
I told her that I will explain on my web page. Broström only have the management for the Chem Trans ships and Chem Trans don't require the crew to wear uniform. It's only on ships owned and operated by Broström we need to have uniform.
After the call I went out on deck for a look around. Pilot was ordered for midnight and we completed discharging at 2305.

I went to my cabin. I stayed in and extra cabin onboard, the old Chief Officer will sign off in Kristiansand, Norway. He will show me the paper work and stuff before he sign
Not so nice and tidy
My nook
off. I will be nice to move in to Chief Officer's cabin. This extra cabin is very small, a pair of socks on the floor is enough to make the cabin look very messy.
Imagine my small nook with my entire luggage. When I should take my morning shower I tumbled over my bags and skid in to the shower when I got out of my bed.

I was drinking tea in the mess room when I caught a glance of the clock, 0820!!! What the Yoo! My wrist watch
showed 0735 and I was enjoying my tea while scratching my behind. I had to pour the tea down my throat before running of to the bridge.

During the morning I checked our storage rooms so I know where we keep everything. Before soon it was lunch time and it was Kåldolme for lunch Pilipino style. Yummy!!
After lunch I went to the CCR and got the serial numbers on the Skarpenord sensors that we are going to land for service in Norway. Well, Skarpenord, if someone tells you they gauge the cargo tanks with Skarpenord you know they bought it to save money. SAAB tank radar is expensive, but it's outstanding when it comes to reliability. You don't top-off any tanks with Skarpenord, you have to gauge the ullage manually.

On the bridge I located the tea machine and the entertainment center first thing. The tea machine is located above the refrigerator so milk for the tea is always close by.
I bought a case of soft drinks (light of course) before my night watch. This will be my last soft drinks, I will drink only water and tea when this case is finished.

12 th of January was a very gloomy and grey day, there was no wind but heavy swell
made our ship rolling on the way to Norway. We arrived to Kristiansand pilot station 1330 and we had all fast at 1420.
Surveyor inspected the cargo tanks, there was some condense in the tanks so we had our ABs to mop the tanks. Cargo hose was connected 1520 and we started to load at 1530. With a rate of 440MT/h we expect to be ready around 2-3 o'clock in the morning.

Our CCR is located in a small house
CCR (the penalty box)
(penalty box) on deck. There is a Skarpenord tank level gauge and remote control of the
CCR, control for the valves

CCR, Skarpenord and FRAMO control
cargo and ballast valves. Hmm, actually it's only the valves to the ballast double bottom that's works. So we have to open the other valves by hand. We have ballast in our double bottom and we have top tanks at the sides of the ship. When discharging the top tanks we just open the valves and the water pours out on the side of the ship. We have to use a pump to discharge our double bottom.

We have ballast in cargo tanks #3 wing tanks as well, we only use #4 wing tanks for cargo when we load Caustic Soda. The rest of the tanks is in poor condition and are not used. We have 7center tanks in stainless steel, 1-6 CT and 2CT P/S. That's enough to get full cargo with heavy cargoes like Sulphuric Acid and Caustic Soda.

When we had started to load I went for a shower. I had to move my things from the nook and in to my new cabin. Old
Chief Officer was going home. Well, when moving my stuff a found a big chocolate bar in my jacket. I bought it when I checked in on the hotel in Gothenburg. I had forgotten all about the chocolate. Now I had something to munch on while updating my web page.

I hope you notice my presence of mind when I took the picture of my cabin before moving the luggage to my new cabin. Nice and tidy.

My dayroom
My office with bedroom in the back.

When I came on my night watch it was raining again. Well, it's Norway, and that means rain. It was just for me to finish the ballast when I came on watch and at midnight we started to top-off tanks. We completed loading at 0115 and they had to blow the shore line with air so they could empty the line. 0145 they completed the blowing and I was off to my cabin just after 2 o'clock for some paper work. Yes, Chief Officer is working again. Busy 24/7 as usual.

As soon as we left the pilot behind the rolling started. Gale force 8 is everyday food on
Edwin, Toto and Jon
3rd Officer and 2 ABs
the North Sea winter time and there is nothing special with gale. But it's hard to sleep, well, it's hard just to stay in bed.

After 2 days of rolling it was nice to come on my night watch 14th of January. We had slowed down to be at Steenbank pilot station at 2230. No more rolling and I could make tea. Hmm, the entertainment center on the bridge left much to wish for. When you try to adjust
the volume the CD player skips a track and when you want to play next song the coffee machine starts. Well, the music is not blasting high, I have to listen to our HF radio. 674Khz plays music.
I took a picture of the AB on my watch, he sent my web address with SMS to his wife so
she can see the action (almost live) onboard.
We arrived to the pilot station 2235 and we had ETA to Vlissingen for the change of pilot at 0015 15th of January. I was off to my cabin at midnight. I had to write e-mail to Sue. Several days of heavy rolling in the rough sea had made it impossible to write any e-mail. On the bridge it had been busy holding on to something sturdy and in my bed it has been the same story. It's not a “King size” bed and I have “4” pillows (This is not Swedia shipping) so there is not very much space for 82kg Chief Officer in the bed. I don't
Full storm...gale and rolling...0 visibility..gale and better weather...will be better soon...forecast says...
Captain on the bridge
have Sue to cuddle with so I need all the pillows I can get my hands on.
A quick e-mail to Sue and I will have my power nap. We will arrive to Antwerp early morning and then they call me. (If I'm lucky we have to wait in the lock for a long time)

There were a few e-mails from Sue. She was very happy because our tulips is growing on the balcony and are in full bloom.(in January, with love and care everything is possible)
When I was ready with the e-mail I was in my bed in a jiff and the called me at 0530 and I had to rush out on deck. There is no hot water in the shower so it's no use wasting my time in there. We started to discharge at 0635 and they have problem ashore so MAX rate allowed is 195m³/h.
I was relieved by 2nd Officer at lunch. He had just arrived onboard, but he had been onboard here before as 3rd Officer. The other 2nd Officer was picked up with a taxi for transportation to the airport. He was very happy to go home.

When I came in for lunch HKF was onboard looking for 2 guys that wanted to play Ping-Pong. There was another Swedish ship in Antwerp and they wanted to play Ping-Pong. Well, I had been busy all night long and I had some sleep to catch up. The rest of the crew should go to Sunny Radio. No Ping-Pong.

We completed discharging at 2010 15th of January and pilot was ordered for 2100. We had to wait for the lock to get ready so they changed pilot to 2200 and then to 2230. When pilot came onboard at 2225 we were ready to leave. Hmm, we had to wait until 2300 before we could leave our jetty at BASF. We had been ready for and expecting action for a long time and when coming to the lock we found out that we had to wait for an hour outside the lock. In the rain and wind it was hard to hear the crew laughing while cracking spontaneous jokes on deck. I was relieved at midnight while waiting for the lock to get ready. There was a big container ship entering the lock before us.
Anyway, I was off to my cabin. I need some rest, its blowing gale force 8 outside. I hope I can handle all the excitement we expect on the way to Hamburg.

When I came on my morning watch 16th of January the ship was rolling heavily. The sea was coming in on our port quarter. I was to change course to starboard around 0830 and then the sea should come in from behind. No more rolling, but the wind changed and the ship were rolling even more due to heavy sea coming in from port side. I can't help it, but I was a little pissed off.
When we changed course to east at German Bight we finally got the sea from behind and no more rolling.

I had been in the CCR to fill up the last entries in the Oil Record Book. On my way back
to the cabin I passed Captain when he took the inventory of the slop chest.
Hmm, what do we have here? Plenty chocolate and stuff.
- Do you need anything?
- No No, I'm on my diet, I said and I was off in a jiff.
I live after the proverb:
He who fights and runs away lives to fight another day.

I have a Master key to the doors onboard and I can open the slop chest. As you understand I try to keep the key in my cabin. Otherwise the temptation would have been too big for me when passing the slop chest. After the dinner, I was sitting in the mess room drinking tea and bragging for Captain and Chief Engineer.
We talked about chocolate and Captain had to open the door for me when we
Oil Record Book
All tankers must have a Oil Record Book or a Cargo Record Book for Ships Carrying Noxious Liquid Substances in Bulk. Well it's the same thing and they have one in the engine department as well.
We have to fill in all operations involving our cargo of categories A,B,C and D. There is a special book where you can find the different cargoes and which category they belong to. For example Sulphuric Acid is a category C cargo.
There are different operational codes:
(A) Loading of cargo
(C) Unloading of cargo
(E) Cleaning of cargo tanks
(F) Discharging of tank washing into the sea

This is some of the code letters. After each letter there is a number (Item no.):
A.1 Place of Loading
A.2 Identify tank(s), name(s) of substances and category(ies)
C.7 Place of Unloading C.9 Was/were tank(s) emptied?
Ok ok, I think you get the picture. It looks something like below.
Date
Code
(letter)
Item no.
Record of operation/signature of Officer in charge
13 Jan 04
A
1
Antwerp
13 Jan 04
A
2
1-6CT Sulphuric Acid Cat-C

Now I hope you know a little about our Oil Record Book. Otherwise let Chief Officer take care of business.
passed the slop chest on the way back to the cabin. Hmm, Schweizer nöt is yummy

They called me at 7 o'clock in the morning 17th of January.
- 20 minutes to go, 3rd Officer said on the phone.
Yippee!! This is the best time of the day and I was on deck in 3 steps. Gorgeous morning, rain and an ice cold wind.
We had order to load 2 parcels of Sulphuric Acid, 1st parcel was MAX 4200 MT and 2nd parcel MAX 1500 MT. I was called for at 4 o'clock in the afternoon.
- 30 minutes until we start to top-off our tanks, 2nd Officer said on the phone.
Hmm, Skarpenord tank gauging and we had to be all hands on deck when topping-off our tanks. It was raining (no surprise) and AB on watch had to measure the tank with an ullage tape while I was in CCR adjusting the computer. We completed 1st parcel at 1820 and we started to load last parcel at 1840.
We left Hamburg at 2310 17th of January. We had to start the cleaning of the bunker
Nardel and Pumpman
AB & Pumpman during tankcleaning.
tanks forward. Our Fitter have to do some welding, he have to change an air ventilation pipe. He also has to
weld some cracks in the Forepeak.
We were busy all night long with the tank cleaning.
When walking on deck I was slipping and I thought it was my shoes. My working shoes should
Bunker tank
be the “Non slip” kind of safety shoes. Well, then I
could here cracking noises when I walked and I found out that the deck was covered with
ice. I didn't expect the temperature to sink below zero. Hmm, winter is here and I hope it's not for long.

We used tank washing machines in the bunker tanks and we used hot water. We only had an air driven pump for pumping the water to the slop tank so it took very long time. A few minutes washing and hours of pumping.

We have Pilipino crew onboard and they are very good. Sailors from the Philippines are very good and I have only meet 1 bad sailor from Philippines, it was an 2nd Officer a few years ago. I have never meet a “Drunkern sailor” from the Philippines, but
Pumpman
Pumpman, 4 o'clock in the morning
I have meet quite a few Swedish drunks on ships. The last one not to long ago and I was screaming and shouting, but in vain. And the union protects them so it's impossible to fire them. Pisses me off. People like that just destroy for the other Swedish sailors. And they have the cheek to complain and disparage the Pilipino sailors.
Well, I think it's embarrassing listening to the crap.

When we changed pilot in Brunsbüttel we had to turn off the hot water. It was steaming
Nardel
AB is making noodles
on deck and the pilot thought that there would be complains from the pilot boat.
After the pilot change we lowered the tank washing machines to last level and we started the hot water again.

At 4 o'clock it was noodle time, AB was cooking and we were eating together with 2nd Officer who just came down from his watch. It's important to get all the vitamins early morning. I was off for my power nap and I slept until 10 o'clock when Captain called me. As I say, Captain gets nervous when Chief Officer isn't around to answer questions.
I measured the gas in the bunker tanks and in the forepeak and then there was endless paper work to do. I was busy in my office until lunch.

We had got new flash lights in Hamburg so I loaded them with new batteries and handed them out to the crew. When I signed on there was no flashlight, or well, they didn't kept Swedish standard so I ordered new lights. As you understand it's important to have good flashlight when working on a tanker. It takes out the guess work when stripping tanks in the middle of the night.

18th of January started with nice weather. Cold but nice, no wind and our Fitter could complete the welding work on the foc'sle. Well, as no surprise the wind increased to gale in the evening and the ship started to move again. Wind from WSW and our speed decreased a little and we took pilot at 0310 19th of January.
When I came on my morning watch we had about 2 hours to go to the lock. It was raining and blowing as usual and I was in a bad mood. There is no hot water in the shower and I need 10-15 minutes in a hot shower in the morning. We have a very nice crew onboard and I can take that most of the equipment onboard are old and works a bit haphazard. It's hard without the “Entertainment center” on the bridge, but I need my hot shower.

We had all fast at 1210 (middle of the lunch) and we started to discharge at 1250. I had the ABs to sort out all the working cloths in the afternoon. We throw away bags of old boiler suits, they don't last long with Sulphuric Acid. We washed plenty of old boiler suits and put back in the store room. When people sign off they just leave their stuff behind and the dress room looks like a garbage dump. I collected all our stuff, working shoes, gloves and raining coats in 1 store room onboard. Boiler suits were placed after size and finally I was satisfied with the result. 2 empty cabinets and all working cloths collected in 1 store room. Now I can find stuff for new on signers when they ask for cloths.
Now the crew has new flashlights and rainwear and they look happy.
A wet crew is a sulky crew.

I woke up 1745, just in time for dinner. I had 3 minutes of hot water in the shower, just enough to keep the miliaria away.
When I came on my watch at 8 o'clock in the evening it was still raining. It's raining 24/7 and it's very annoying. Well, we completed discharging at 0015 20th of January. Pilot was ordered for 1 o'clock and we left BASF at 0110. While shifting berth to BAYER I took the opportunity to send e-mail to Sue and to update my web page.
There was e-mail from Sue and I was happy and ready for more action at arrival to BAYER. We only have 1500 MT to discharge there, so we expect to be ready early morning. At 0150 2nd Officer called me:
- 10 minutes to next berth, he said.
I was on deck in 2 steps and the action started right away. Well, the action was until 0240 when we had all fast at BAYER. Then it was waiting and no action . Finally at 0315 the Loading Master came onboard. Well, there were 2 of them.
I can't help it but I must tell you this: When 1 of the Loading Masters went ashore to get the ship/ shore checklist I asked the remaining what maximum allowed pressure was during discharging he said:
- Hmm, maybe 3 Bar.
- 3 Bar !!!!!!!!???????
- Yeah, what do you think? What's normal? I don't know, I just work here, he said
- Well, then I think it will take very long time to discharge, I said.

I had forgotten to fill up fresh water for our tank cleaning at the other jetty. So I was relieved when they told me that we could fill fresh water at this jetty.
While waiting for the analysis of the cargo samples I enjoyed a soft drink in my cabin. Hmm, 2nd Officers have to take my morning watch so I can sleep a little.
At 0435 3rd Officer called me and I was down in the CCR in a jiff. We commenced discharging at 0440 and then I was off to my bed. At 0530 they called again for a question. Now I hope that I can sleep.

Yoo!! I was sleeping until 2 o'clock in the afternoon. We were in the lock when I woke up.
Pump man and Gerard
Pump man and 2nd Officer
I went out on deck to take a few photos for my page about locks. I take every opportunity to get nice pictures.

I managed to get 4 minutes with lukewarm water in the shower. It's not like the hot water disappears and its cold water coming. It's ice water coming in the shower and I had to jump out of the shower. 4 minutes was more then I had hoped for and I was ready to do my paper work and to prepare for next voyage. Loading in Hamburg and back to
Antwerp again, exciting. It's easy to find something to do

When meeting Captain it was web page and digital camera sideways and long ways as usual. When I signed on he asked:
- Is it you with the web page?
- Why? How do you know about the web page? I asked.
He had been on a meeting at the company with 8 other Captains and the head of the
Gale and storm outside... Bad weather....
Captain on the bridge
personnel department at Broström had told them:
- Check out the web page www.aladdin st.
Hmm, aladdin.st has become an institution in shipping circles and I have to start thinking about what I'm writing.

We left the lock and we were on the way again. I went to my cabin for a soft drink and some relaxation.

We had left the pilot behind when I came on my night watch. It was gorgeous weather, a bit cold but no wind. I could enjoy 2 pots of tea on my watch.
The AB on my watch told me that he had a 3rd Officers license and he asked if he could do the navigation.
- You can be my instructor, he said.
- Yeah, go ahead, I said
- Do I use the GPS?
- GPS!!!??? I can call the Mess man for the navigation, I said.

When they called me for my morning watch 21st of January I went in to my shower. Ice water and I returned to my bed. It was a beautiful day, sunshine and no wind. We held
Back: AB Jon, Messman Romulo, Motorman Ernesto, Cook Apolonio  Front row: AB Toto Pump man Rogelio  AB Nardel Fitter Rey
A-team outside the CCR
an oil spill drill after the coffee break. I took the opportunity to get some photos of the crew.

We had 30 minutes to Elbe pilot when I got off my watch at lunch. I went to the mess room for my lunch. We got new movies in Antwerp so I took 1 of the new videos after lunch. First a shower. After about 45 seconds with lukewarm water it was ice cold again, and I had to wipe of the soap
with my towel. I was in the best of modes when I turned on the movie. I started off with a movie I began to watch yesterday evening and when it was time for the new movie it was time for my power nap.

Changing harbour pilot at 1900 in Hamburg and I went on deck. I had to prepare for the loading, paper work and test of equipment.
Yoo!!! It was freezing cold on deck , below zero.
We had all fast at 1950 and at arrival the ship chandler was waiting on the jetty with provision. I got new ullage band and we got new gaskets. I had ordered batteries for deck, but I think they ended up in the engine department and I will find them tomorrow.
We started to load at 2050 and I had finished the ballast just before 2nd Officer came on watch, he only had to strip the ballast tanks and scratch his rear end.
I was off to my cabin and I didn't bother trying the shower. I expected a wake up call between 5 and 6 o'clock in the morning from 3rd Officer. I will top the tanks and do the cargo calculations and paperwork. And at 0430 they called me, I skipped the shower and went straight down to the CCR after a detour to my bed. I have time for 3 minutes
more. I wasn't in a hurry out in the cold
It was more than nippy, it was very cold and it was ice on deck. We had sprinkled deck with salt but it did not help.
We completed loading at 0610 and the paper came onboard at 0640. We left Hamburg at 0730 without any backward glances.
Hamburg behind in a beautiful sunrise

We had just changed from harbour pilot to river pilot when I came on watch. I'm looking
Hamburg behind in a beautiful sunrise
forward to 4 hours with the pilot on the river Elbe.

Weather forecast for the day: south force 7, snow or rain in the afternoon. Bring it on!
When I was relieved by 2nd Officer at 12 we had just passed Cuxhaven and I was ready to jump overboard. 4 hours on Elbe with a pilot is nothing I'm wishing for.
I had Captain to relieve me for a while. I had “paper work” to do.
When we came out the weather was nice, no wind, a nice surprise. After lunch Captain forced me to buy 2 Schweizer nöt. Hmm, chocolate and a video. I felt asleep after awhile and I slept until 1930 in the evening and thus I missed the raggmunk our Cook had made for dinner. I had a few before my watch, very good. Skånska raggmunkar with a Pilipino touch.

We arrived to Steenbank pilot at 1050 23rd of January. After lunch I inspected 2 cargo tanks and then I went for a sleep. We had the tide with us all the way from Vlissingen, so we arrived to the lock in Antwerp early afternoon. At 4 o'clock they called me again and we had all fast at BASF 1630. We started to discharge at 1740 and I was off for dinner.

There was a man coming onboard for checking our tanks on the way to Hamburg. He will check all our ballast and cargo tanks so they can decide how much steel they will change
Pump man, church man and 1st Engineer
Our man from the church in the dayroom
on the shipyard. We are scheduled for shipyard in March.
Well, I hope I'm home when they are going to the shipyard.

They came onboard from Swedish Seaman's church with newspaper and there were 2 of the crew going with him to the city. I was off to send e-mail to Sue. My inbox
was packed with e-mail from Sue. She wrote: you never ever have the self-discipline about eating. One thing is for sure, I will claim the money back for the Hälsovakten CD. There must be something wrong with it. She didn't believe that I could drop the bad habit of eating chocolate. Well, I have read in some health magazines that chocolate is very healthy. Well, anyway, she doesn't have any faith in me and my diet.

We left Antwerp 0705 24th of January. They called me at 0840, hmm, nice with a late morning. We left the lock at 0900 and we had to start to pump in and out ballast from our double bottom. Our guest had to inspect the tanks and measure the thickness of the steel. At the same time we should do tank cleaning, pilots on and off during the passage of river Schelde. As Chief Officer you have to be on the ball, but luckily enough we have the A-team onboard. #1 Pump man and ABs. Hmm, actually it's very easy to be Chief Officer on this ship, Pump man knows the ship as his own pocket and he run the show.

Well, we were busy until after midnight with the ballast tanks. The inspector was brown of mud after crawling around ballast tanks all day long. The last thing he told me was:
- It's going to be nice with a shower.
Hmm, he's in for a surprise when he's taking a shower.
I was off to my cabin, I had to finish the movie I started yesterday. I didn't want to take a chance with the shower.

When I came on my morning watch 25th of January the sea was like a mirror and the sun was breaking through the clouds. Very nice, I enjoyed the weather while drinking my tea. We arrived to Elbe pilot station at 0955. A dream came through, 2 hours with the pilot on the bridge before going off my watch.
I took a picture of the pilot when he climbed onboard. Photo for my web page about the pilot. Take a peek!!
When the pilot came onboard the weather turned bad with rain and fog. Tankers were not
Rogelio
Pump man prepare deck for loading
allowed to navigate on the river. But we were gas free and no dangerous cargo onboard so we could proceed.
We arrived to a snow white Hamburg at 1600 and we had all fast at 1620. Tank inspection and paper work and we started to load at 1740. Hmm, I can expect an early morning wake up call again when they need me for topping tanks and paper work.

I started a new movie after dinner, but as usually when I 'm relaxing with a movie I have
paper work and e-mail to write at the same time. I usually have to rewind the movie a couple of times. Very hard to relax and I had to go on my watch at 8 o'clock.
When 2nd Officer came on watch at midnight we topped off a few tanks and I was off to my cabin at 1 o'clock in the morning..

Guess who they called at 0455. A nice and hot shower before going on deck.
We completed loading at 0610 and we left Hamburg at 0730 26th of January. Nice to leave a freezing cold Hamburg behind. I'm looking forward to next voyage. Hamburg - Norway, pretty exciting.

When leaving Hamburg it became very foggy on river Elbe. I was busy trying to handle the excitement during the passage of river Elbe. The Pilot was a real prankster, a ray of sunshine and the time went very slowly. Our Mess man came up with fresh made doughnuts:
- Captain told me to bring them to you, he said.
Well, I will kick is rear end. We changed pilot in Brunsbüttel at 1038. When Captain came on the bridge he was asking for the doughnuts
- Pilot ate them.
- It's Korv stroganoff for lunch, Captain told me.
- Doe's he know how to make it? I asked.
- You can go down and show him, Captain said.
- No, I don't want to disturb him.
- Please, I take your watch on the bridge if you make the lunch, Captain said.
- I don't know, I said.
- Please! You are from Skåne and know you way around the kitchen, Captain tried again.
I left Captain with the pilot on the bridge and I was down in the galley in a jiff. I arrived in the nick of time, our Cook had prepared everything. Mushrooms and a lot of other stuff, no cream. I was about to go back to the bridge, but I changed my
mind and went back to the galley.
- Let's start all over again, I said.
I got all the right ingredients and I made our Korv Stroganoff. I was ready just for lunch and the bowls were empty in no time.
- Is there any more? Captain asked.
- We have to think about the expenses, I said.
We received new voyages via e-mail. After Norway and Antwerp 2 new Hamburg - Antwerp voyages, no end to the excitement. I got e-mail from the Swedish seaman's Church in Antwerp. They will deliver snus to me in Ruisbroek if they can find us.

When I came on my morning watch 27th of January the sea was like a mirror, no wind
and sunshine. We had ETA to Steenbank pilot 11 o'clock but we had to slow down so we had an ETA 1400. We had to wait for high water. Ruisbroek is situated as close to Brussels we can come with a ship, from Ruisbroek there are canals to Brussels for barges. We have to pass a lock to get to Ruisbroek, and we can only arrive there when it's high water. High water is at 2040 27th of January.

We arrived to Steenbank pilot station at 1400. 6h 40m to go to the lock in Ruisbroek, changing from sea pilot to
river pilot in Vlissingen and then change pilot when passing Antwerp.

Back in the days warning!! Last time I was in Ruisbroek was some 20 years ago
when I was an AB. I had been in Antwerp for a few beers and when I returned in the wee hours 2nd Officer on duty and Captain was fighting on deck. I wonder what they would have said today if there was a fight on deck.
I also remember 1 time when we entered the lock, the lock is small
and there was just enough room for the ship. It was summer and plenty beautiful girls looking at us in the lock. It was just for me to pass the mooring line to the mooring guy, but no. I had to try to impress the girls. I should throw the heaving line and I took a run and throw the heaving line. There was 20 cm between the ship and the lock and the line landed in the lock. Great embarrassment.
Hmm, 20 years ago and it seems like yesterday. The agony hit me hard when I realized that I'm getting old quick. It will be hard to fall asleep tonight.

We arrived to the lock at 2120. It was a new and big lock and I didn't recognize the place. It was cold and it started to snow. We arrived to Ruisbroek and had all fast at 2250 27th of January. We had to discharge to 2 barges otherwise there wouldn't be space enough for the cargo ashore. At quarter past 11 first barge arrived and we were connected at 2345. We connected shore line as well and we were ready to start discharging at 0030 28th of January.
By now our deck was white and covered with snow. I was looking forward to go to my bed. We had started our pump and we asked if the received any cargo on the barge.
- Yes.
We increased to 6 bars on the manifold, but nothing got out of the cargo tanks. I stopped the pump and asked on the barge if everything was open.
- Yes.
Well, if we have cargo in the hose and nothing going to the barge there must be something closed on the barge.
- Everything is open, they said.
Hmm, what the Yoo. I explained to them that they had to check their line onboard and they found out that a valve was closed. They had to change connection and finally at 0120 we could start to discharge.

Our Agent arrived onboard just after 0130 when I was off to my cabin. He asked millions of questions and I was a little moody. Finally I got to my cabin. Shower? No.

When I came on my morning watch we had completed the 2 barges and had started to discharge ashore. I had a snowball-fight with the AB on my watch. I had preferred
Toto, Nardel and Jon
Our ABs in the dressing room.
summer, it was very cold and gloomy and grey.
We left Ruisbroek at 1600 28th of January and we were out of the lock just before 5 o'clock.

The boys on deck started the tank cleaning and I started to clean starboards slop tank. We need to have our slop tanks clean and gas free before going to the ship yard.

When I came on the bridge Captain told me that we had to drop our anchor outside Vlissingen due to bad weather. It's blowing force 10-11 outside. We dropped our anchor at 2220 in full
snow storm and we didn't stay longer than necessarily on the foc'sle after that we had dropped the anchor. I were back on the bridge in the twinkling of an eye. We don't know how long we have to wait, pilot service is suspended due to the bad weather.

When I came on my morning watch 29th of January we had changed anchorage. We had moved from Vlissingen Noord anchorage to Vlissingen road anchorage. We had started to drag our anchor at 4 o'clock in the morning due to strong wind.
We wanted to drop our anchor at the inner anchorage yesterday but it's not allowed for tankers to drop anchor there. Stupid rules.

I started to clean starboards slop tank and at 1 o'clock in the afternoon we had a meeting on the bridge. The whole crew and I took the opportunity to take a photo.

 Cook Apolonio, Mess man Romulo, 3rd Officer Edwin, Cap Leif, 2nd Officer Gerard, 1st Engineer Oscar, Pump man Rogelio, Chief Engineer Sune. Second row: AB Nardel, Fitter Rey. First row: AB Toto, AB Jon, Motorman Ernesto.
A-team

When I woke up in the evening after my afternoon nap we were still at the anchorage. I had time to write a few e-mail before leaving for my watch. I brought a few Diet Pepsi to the bridge. We were still at the anchorage when I came on my watch.
While drinking my “ soda pop ” they called me on the VHF.
- CT Sky!! Centrale Vlissingen.
Centrale Vlissingen is were the pilot is keeping track of ships when the pilot service is suspended.
- CT Sky replying, I said.
- Your coming close to the ship west of you, they told me.
- We are swinging with the tide, I said.
- Keep sharp look out, they said.
20 minutes later they called me again.
- CT Sky!! Centrale Vlissingen.
- CT Sky replying
- You are drifting and coming very close to the ship west of you.
- We are turning with the tide, I said.
- You are 50m from the ship west of you.
- I'm 2,8 cable from the nearest ship, distance increasing, I said.
- My position is very close to the SS3 L/B, I said.
- Oh, we put the wrong label on the ship. Your position is good.
Hey!! It's Swedish flag. The anchorage was full of ships waiting for better weather. Many of the ship were dragging the anchors and on most of the ships there were Russian crew. They were screaming to each other.
I have a new classic reply to add to the others I have. Or what do you think of this one:
- I'm very close to you, but you are also very close to me!!!
One of the best I have heard is 1 ship replying to a question about their position a few years ago.
- We are at sea!!
Well, I'm sure the officer on watch or the Captain on that ship wasn't paid very well. A popular line is:
- I'm a war ship!!
Or as the officer on watch on MSC India told me when I asked her to change course to prevent her running in to me:
- I'm soon at my waypoint.
I changed course. Anyway, at midnight I was relieved by 2nd Officer at midnight and I was off to my cabin.

I hope we can leave for Hamburg soon, I had enough of this anchorage now. I will go to bed and continue with my book. Tomorrow is a new exciting day.

Coming on my morning watch 30th of January I had time for a quick cuppa before the Captain stepped in on the bridge.
- I take your watch if you make spaghetti and meat sauce for lunch, he said.
- Hmm, I don't know. You have to arrange it with the Cook, I said.
- I speak with the Cook, Captain said.
- OK, first I have to go down in the slop tank, I said.
I had planned to go down the slop tank after lunch. But after spaghetti there is only one way to go, and that way lead me to my bed. I went down the slop tank and at 1040 I
was in the galley.
I picked the ingredients, a lot of cream. I peeled the onions while our Cook minced the pork. Our frying table was full of onion and minced meat.
- Is this enough for a hungry crew of 14? I asked our Cook.
- Yes.
- It's look like enough for a family of 5, I said.


While eating Captain was nagging about “Semlor”.
- I have ordered marzipan, so you can make Semlor, he said.
- What about my diet?
While eating our lunch (lean cuisine) 2nd Officer called from the bridge. Pilot is coming 1 o'clock and we can finally leave the anchorage. I hope its nice weather outside.

Our bridge
Here we sit when driving the ship
Space for exercise
Chart table


We left the pilot behind at 1455 30th of January. The ship was rolling due to strong wind from SW. The sea came in from port quarter and I was happy that the sea didn't came from the side.
We arrived to Elbe pilot at 0930 31st of January. The pilot boarded us on river Elbe and not at Elbe L/B due to the bad weather. It was raining and the pilot told me that they had 20cm of snow but the wind from SW brought warm air and the snow was melting slowly.
When we arrived to Hamburg at 1550 there were only a few spots of snow. At arrival we got provision and bunker. They expect us to start loading at 7 o'clock in the evening.

They called me 0640 1st of February. Time to top-off tanks and to do paper work. It was nice to sleep until 0740. I didn't have to go up 4 o'clock in the morning. We started to load first parcel at 1945 yesterday and I was ready at 2310 and we started the big parcel at 2335 and thus I could sleep all night long. Important with good planning.
We left Hamburg at 0935 1st of February and by now all the snow was gone.

First day of February, this month I will sign off and I need some holiday now. I didn't
A grey and gloomy day
have many months of holiday last year, I must be a dream come through for a Personnel Manager. They never know where I am. I received a post card and it was first bound for Bro Anton and then for CT Sky.
- Where is Aladdin?
- I don't know, but he's working.
They don't know where I am, but they know that I work. It must be better than:
- Where is Mr. X?
- His home.
-Hmm, but where is Mr. Y?
- He's also home?
- What the Yoo! Where is Mr. Z?
- He wants to go home.
Well, a little more than 2 weeks and I'm off to see Sue again. She will pick me up at the airport. 2 weeks will pass quickly.

Anyway, we steamed towards Norway and we had nice weather. There had been a gale warning and while loading in Hamburg there were strong winds. But when we came on river Elbe it was calm and there was only a little swell when we came out.

We passed the north coast of Denmark on my morning watch 2nd of February. It was nice weather, well, with nice weather I mean no gale and strong wind. It was gloomy and grey and cold. I had to go on deck after lunch to get to the CCR. It was cold in my T-shirt and shorts. But as long as there are no wind it's OK.

For lunch it was sausage and bacon, yesterday it was bacon for dinner and sausage for lunch and the day before it was sausage. Sausage every day so I have only been eating toast and pumpernickel with tea for the last few days. Good for my diet, I had enough of sausage and bacon for a long time now.

I woke up from my afternoon nap when Sue called. We had a 1 hour chat and I was in a good mood when I went for my dinner (toast and tea) at 6 o'clock. ETA to Fredrikstad pilot in Oslofjorden 2000 so I had time to upload my webpage and send e-mail after doing some paperwork in the CCR.

I was in a good mood when coming on my watch just before 8 o'clock. Maybe I should
Students and pilot
Pilot came onboard with 2 girls
have a chat with Sue every day in order to keep me in a good mood.
Pilot came onboard at 2000 together with 2 girls. 1 of them were a student writing about pilots and their job.

Captain was running around the bridge like a track horse. I never see him on the bridge otherwise, well, 2 girls......
I got enough of the ghastliness.
- I go down for my paperwork, I said and went down to the CCR.
We arrived to Fredrikstad at 2125 2nd of February and we had all fast at 2135. It was foggy and the jetty was white of snow. There was floating some ice in the river.

I went around with the Surveyor and took samples and we could start to discharge at 2300 when he was ready with the analyze of the cargo.
We got a new Cadet coming onboard just before 11 o'clock as well and he will be with us for 4 weeks. Our AB showed him to his cabin before we started to discharge.
Estimated time of completion around 8 o'clock in the morning, good, a full nights sleep. Before my nap I sent some e-mail and I updated my web page.

It was nice with a full night sleep and when I came to the CCR on my morning watch 3rd of February we were just about to complete discharging. We did the paper work and disconnected the cargo hose and we left Fredrikstad 0850. It was gloomy and grey with fog. Rain in the air as well.
Late afternoon we were running in to rough sea and swell. We had to reduce our speed and we were delayed to Jössingfjord. We had all fast at 0800, about 6 hours late.
During the late morning the sun showed up in Jössingfjord, nice. At first we had planned to clean 1+6 cargo tanks while staying alongside due to bad weather outside.
But we had to leave immediately after completion, there was a ship coming to Kristiansand and if she started to load before us we had to wait for 30 hours before we could start to load. Hurry hurry.

We left at 1420 and we got orders to load at arrival to Kristiansand in the afternoon. No waiting. If we had to wait for the other ship our next 2 voyages between Hamburg and Antwerp had most likely been cancelled. Now it looks like I'm off the ship when we have done those 2 exciting voyages. Nice to see Sue again

We arrived at a very good time to Kristiansand. We arrived 2150 4th of February and we had all fast at 2200. We started to load at 2310 after tank inspection and paper work. Well, it will take about 10 hours to load and I expect them to call me for topping-off tanks and paper work around 7-8 o'clock in the morning.
After my watch at midnight I sent some e-mail to Sue and I received love letters from Sue. There was also e-mail from visitors wondering if there is nothing happening onboard because of long time between updates. Well, plenty happens but I try to keep my phone bills to a minimum. I had it with those 500-600 € bills every month. Sorry for any disappointments.

After reading my e-mail I wrote e few words on my web page and I was of to my bed. I
Toto and Pumpman
AB and pump man taking a rest in the dayroom
started to read a new book about Skåne a few days ago. It's about the war between Denmark and Sweden in the middle of the 17th century. Maybe I can read 1 or 2 pages before I fall asleep.

Well, guess who the called at 0630. It wasn't the Captain.
I was down in the CCR in 2 steps and we started to top-off our tanks. We completed loading at 0830 and it took them
about 30 minutes to blow the cargo hose. We completed the cargo documents and we left Kristiansand at 1040 5thof February.
At first it was calm outside but after an hour we got rough sea against us. I had to hand out plaster for sea sickness to the Motorman in the afternoon. We have special plasters to put behind the ears to prevent sea sickness onboard.

When I came on my morning watch 6th of February it was still rough sea and swell. At 9 o'clock I went down with the Cadet to the galley. We should bake Semlor. Hmm, when we
Apolonio
Our Cook
came to the galley we found out that we didn't have any wiped cream onboard. We returned to the bridge and our Cadet started to answer questions in his book. The Cadet have a book from the school with questions and tasks he should preform on the ship.

When I came on my night watch the wind was gone and the sea sick boys were happy again. Just before 11 o'clock in the evening when we passed Amsterdam and Schiphol the gale hit us again. Force 7-8 from SW slowed us down a bit and we had ETA to Steenbank pilot 0300 7th of February.
I could not help thinking about Sue when we passed Schiphol airport.
I'm soon on the plane and it will be nice to meet Sue on the airport.
When they called me for my morning watch 7th of February I knew we were outside because of the movement of the ship. We had to drop our anchor 0310 7th of February because the pilot service was suspended. Gale from SW. 1 anchor winch had broke during the night and the 2nd winch broke in the afternoon while heaving up the anchor. From 1450 we steamed against the rough sea outside Steenbank and when I came on my night watch the pilot called us.
- CT Sky!! Steenbank pilot on channel 64.
- CT Sky replying, I answered.
- Please proceed to Middlebank L/B for pilot to board. Pilot ladder port side 1 foot above the water.
We were ship #1 for the pilot and at 2115 the pilot was onboard. Plenty ship waiting for the pilot but they only had 6 sea pilots onboard the pilot ship.
At 2200 the pilot service was suspended again. No more pilots and the wind increased again. Force 9 from NW. Antwerp was full o ships waiting for pilot so maybe we have to wait for long time before we can leave Antwerp.

In bad weather the sea pilots have to follow the ship to their destinations because they can't disembark in the bad weather. So after a few hours they run out of pilots. The Helicopter was not working and the pilot told me that many of the pilots don't want to use the helicopter anymore
- There was a pilot who got killed in an accident and the family had not yet got the money from the insurance., the Pilot told me.
- It takes a very long time, I said.
- Well, the called it an involuntary suicide, and they don't want to pay, the Pilot said.
- What the bip is an involuntary suicide? I asked
-Yeah, it's a shame and now only a few pilots want to use the helicopter, the Pilot said.
We were lucky to get a pilot, waiting outside with wind from NW and forecast had promised force 10 up to 11. Then we're better off in Antwerp. Or as the Pilot said:
- It was like a gate open up for you and then shuts behind you.


A was relieved by 2nd Officer at midnight and we expected to be in the lock around 0130, time for some paper work and to write 1 or 2 words in my web page.

We arrived to the lock at 0140 8th of February and I could see from my cabin window that we started to move out of the lock at 0220. I went down in the CCR and we started to test high level alarms and at 0240 we had first line ashore at BASF. Loading Master came onboard for paper work and then the Surveyor came for cargo calculation and sampling. At 0340 sampling was completed and when we should start discharging they told us there were something wrong with the shore line. We had to wait until 0455 before we could start discharging and it was almost 6 o'clock before I was in my cabin.
Why is it that I never manage to over sleep our meals? I gave it my best try, but I woke up just in time for lunch. When I came down to the mess room our man from the church was there with snus for me and the Cadet. I asked him if he had plans to come back tomorrow.
- Will you be here tomorrow? He asked.
- Maybe, I answered.
We have to repair our anchor winches and we don't know if there are any pilots for us when we are ready to leave.
- Can you please bring some pumpernickel and fresh French bread if you come back tomorrow?
- Yes, I will bring some if I'm coming tomorrow, he said.
After lunch I went back to my cabin. Captain told me that there were new Swedish video that had arrived this morning. I killed a few hours in my sofa in front of the video.

We completed discharging at 1720 and arm was disconnected at quarter to 6. We had to shift the ship 70 meters or something astern because there was a barge waiting to discharge at our jetty. So we were busy until 7 o'clock with the shifting and then we had our dinner.
At 9 o'clock the Dutch fitters came back from Rotterdam with the stuff for our anchor winches. They expect to be ready 3 o'clock in the morning with the winches. When they are ready we can order the pilot.

Pilot came onboard at 0800 9th of February and we left Antwerp at 0800. There was a big ship coming in to the lock after us so it took a very long time in the lock. We had to stay for about 2 hours in the lock so I had time to fill up ballast in #1 Top WT.

We left the lock just before 11 o'clock so I had time for a short chat with the pilot
Crew eating
before lunch.
Sausage and bacon for lunch. I went for my “Orange cake”. Toast with orange marmalade. Well, it's a little
more exciting to call it cake, and on a Monday. Talking about indulging a little luxury on the “middle of the week” menu.
The pilot service was still suspended so they wanted us to take the pilot with us to Hamburg and Mess man prepared a cabin for him. But they called us and told us that they had
opened the pilot station at Steenbank again. Nice, no strangers onboard. And we can have all the sausage for us self.

We got a preliminary voyage for Antwerp to Norrköping with Caustic Soda on e-mail from Chemtrans. Then voyage 10/04 (Hamburg - Antwerp) will be cancelled and we will load next time after discharging the Sulphuric Acid in Antwerp. Hmm, I will leave the ship in Antwerp then, maybe.

On my evening watch the Cadet came up with his book. We filled in the tasks he had preformed during the week. Last task in the book was to perform a stowaway search.
- You can search the ship for stowaways, I suggested.
He wasn't jumping up and down in excitement over my idea.
- Hmm, maybe I wait with that task, he said.
- No no, this is good training. They guy lying down in the cabin on the deck below us is the Captain. So don't mistake him for a stowaway, I said.
- We ask the AB to hide on the ship and then you can look for him.
But the Cadet was not in the mood to play hide and seek. Well, there will be new chances for him. Well, anyway, if we get wiped cream in Hamburg I will show him how to make Semlor. Maybe the most important task onboard.

When I came on my morning watch 10th of February we had about 3 hours to go to Elbe pilot. I asked Captain to relieve me so I could go and finish the slop tanks. I were
Johan, Sune and Leif
Cadet, Chief Engineer & Captain in the Mess room
ready just after the pilot came onboard. Pilot was onboard at 1115 and I was on the bridge 1125. 30 minutes with the pilot is OK. At 12 o'clock it was lunch and then paper work.

They called me, hmm, I don't remember, I was too tired. But I think it was just after 4 o'clock in the afternoon.
- Soon at the jetty, 3rd Officer said.
When I came on deck the air was white of falling snow. It will be very nice to sign off now. We did the tank inspection and we were ready to receive cargo at 1715.
- Shore is not ready to start load now. They are short of people, the Agent said.

We just finished taking onboard our provision and it was time for dinner. Saucisse surprise for dinner.
At arrival our new Captain came onboard and the old Captain left us after dinner.

I was glad for the delay, I will start load the small parcel for BAYER and then load the balance to full cargo for BASF. I hope I complete 1st parcel just before midnight and then I can sleep while they load the big parcel. I expect an early call for topping-off tanks and paper work, but the later they start the longer I can sleep.
We started to load at 1955 so I was busy all the watch deballasting. But there was time
to chat with the AB when he did not dip ballast tanks.
- Will you come back to this ship? He asked.
- When there is hot water, I answered.
We completed first parcel at 2330 and after calculation we started 2nd parcel at 2400. Good prospects for a
few hours sleep until it's time again. Actually it was so good prospects so I had time to write a “ I love you” e-mail to Sue.
Well, I could not connect to the internet so no e-mail.
 Idea of the year 
I told my AB that I needed 10 -15 minutes in a hot shower every morning. Otherwise I'm getting grumpy.
The AB came up with a very good idea:
- If you go up at 5 o'clock every morning there is hot water for you.
- Oh yeah!!!!
This will be the last e-mail before signing off. I will try in Antwerp next time.

Hmm, no e-mail from Sue. I will get an extra pillow to my bed instead. Now I'm off for my power nap and sweet dreams.

I was called for at 0730 11th of February.
- Time to top-off tanks, 3rd Officer said on the phone.
I went straight to the CCR without passing the shower. At 0925 we completed loading and we left Hamburg at 1050.
On my way to the bridge after the change to river pilot from harbour pilot I could see
Yummy
the Cadet in the kitchen. He was baking Semlor.

After my watch I went down to the Mess room, just to check it out. Hmm, while there I could as well go for a snack. When we were ready with the meal I followed the Cadet to the kitchen. The dough was rising and they were ready to go in the oven. I was looking forward to the Semlor in the evening.

I woke up late for the dinner and the Semla, I skipped the ice shower and I was down in the mess room in 2 steps.
- Were are Semlorna?
- There are a few left for you.
I made some hot milk and I enjoyed my Semla (or) before returning to my cabin.

When coming on my night watch the AB had a big bag of potato chips.
- Do you want some? He asked.
- No thanks, I'm on diet.
We had a nice watch with good weather. I was drinking water while he was stuffing himself with chips. Now I don't have many of these watches to do before signing off.

We had ETA to Steenbank pilot 1400 12th of February. When I called them 2 hours before they told me that there were no Belgian pilot's available.
- Maybe you have to drop anchor at arrival, they said.
We didn't have to drop our anchor, we reduced our speed and pilot came onboard at 1425. We entered the lock at 1930 in the evening of the 12th of February.
I could watch us entering the lock from my cabin. I was sending my last e-mail to Sue and I received e-mail from our church man in Antwerp. He could not find the picture of him on my page.
It was dark outside and it looked cold and wet. I was in no hurry out there, but at 2000 I had to go out there. We left the lock at 2020 and it's about 25 minutes to BASF jetty. At arrival I could see my reliever waiting on the jetty.
That's the spirit we're looking for. Almost a full 10 on the enthusiasm Richter scale.
At 2050 we had first line ashore and we had all fast at 2100 12th of February and the new Chief Officer came onboard.

I gave the new Chief Officer a boiler suit and gloves (he had brought his own safety shoes) while the Surveyor took samples of the cargo.
We started to discharge at 2130. I was showing the new Chief Officer around in the penalty box (CCR). When he called the agent for transportation to the ship at arrival to Antwerp there was someone steeling his bag. So he lost passport and all the certificates.
Our agent arranged a taxi to pick him up at 2300 so he could go to the police and report the theft.

I woke up early in the morning of 13th of February. 0630 I think, I looked at the watch and went back to bed. I woke up just after 7 o'clock again. I don't know why I woke up so early. Maybe I'm too excited to see Sue very soon. Well, I don't know why I turned on my shower, after all the set backs with the hot water. But there was hot water (for at least 3-4 minutes) and I was in the good mood.
We had about 1 hour to go before completion when I came on my morning watch. The new Chief Officer was ready to kick some rear ends.
He checked out our ballast system and cargo computer ( ullage tape and ullage table, old school). We completed discharging at 0915 and we left BASF at 1010 and arrived to BAYER at 1100.
We waited for the Surveyor to come onboard and at 12 o'clock when we went for lunch he came. 1205 we were ready with the ullage and calculation and we were off to the mess room with screaming and smoking shoe soles. Our man from the church came onboard with fresh bread.
- I could not find my picture on my web page, he said.
- I will try again and if I'm failing you will get another angry e-mail, he said.
- Well, you managed to send e-mail from my page to me, I said.
- Yeah, but I could not see the picture.
After the lunch I went to my cabin waiting for the cargo analysis to be ready. We could not start discharging before the analysis was ready.

Finally we could start discharging at 1440, but we had to stop at 1445 because of a leak on the cargo arm. At 1450 we were discharging again. Our new Chief Officer went to bed after an exciting day. I went off to my bed as well. Pilot ordered for 8 o'clock tonight.

We had plenty time for exercise with the cargo computer when we came on our night watch. There were no pilots available for us and we had to wait until midnight before we could leave Antwerp. By then I was in my cabin, I trusted the new Chief Officer to take charge during the departure.

When coming on my morning watch 14th of February we had left the pilot, very nice.
Our Fitter
Tank cleaning were completed and the only thing left to do was the mopping
and ejecting. There are always a little water left in the tanks after stripping and we use an ejector to suck it up. The ejector is driven by the fire pump.
There was a hole in the ejector line in the pump room. Our Fitter was busy to make a new pipe during the afternoon. Our AB's had to wait until the evening before they could start the ejecting,
Steffan
New Chief Officer in the pump room
busy until 0230. They have to mop the tanks one more time before arrival. There is always condense in the cargo tanks, especially during the winter.
So it's a good idea to go down in the tanks with some rags to take up the last water before arrival.

The rest of the crew spent Saturday night in the dayroom singing karaoke. Well, if there
Karaoke evening.
is a Pilipino crew there is a karaoke machine. Very popular. They try to get me to sing, hmm, I'm busy. That would have looked nice, Chief Officer busy singing and enjoying him self while the money pours in to the bank account.

Sunday morning 15th of February. We entered Skagerrak and left the North Sea behind just after 10 o'clock. New Chief Officer in my cabin printing
the documents for the loading. I went down to my cabin just before 11 and packed my bag. My portable home.
ETA 1830 to Marstrand pilot and 2 and a half hour with pilot to Stenungsund. I will be with the new Chief Officer in the CCR tonight and I will leave the ship tomorrow morning.

Our Fitter was busy in cargo tank 5C during the afternoon with changing a piece of the heating coil. We need to heat the Caustic Soda and then we can not have leaking heating coils in the tank.

I tried to sleep in the afternoon. Well, now I'm too nervous to sleep. Many things to ponder over while rolling around in the bed.
What will Sue say about my diet? My efforts have plumbed new depths. I got out of my bed and I turned on a video.
I turned off the video just before 6 o'clock and as it turned out my diet was not the only thing that plumbed new depths.

I went down to the mess room at 6 o'clock for dinner. My last meal onboard, not
including breakfast tomorrow. ( I still don't know if I have time for breakfast tomorrow)
I meet the pilot outside my cabin when I was on my way down to the mess room. It was nice eating the dinner on the passenger seat

Tonight I will be the “back seat driver” during the loading. Giving
pointers to the new Chief Officer and I will leave the ship early tomorrow morning.
We had all fast at 1955 and I was in the CCR letting the Chief Officer taking care of the mooring. I was just around and he had to do the job. But I don't like this watching. Who's in charge and takes the responsibility if something goes wrong? I like to do the job myself and to check everything before starting to load.


I signed on in Mönsterås 10th of January and we did a ballast voyage to Kristiansand, Norway. I signed off when loading Caustic Soda in Stenungsund for Mönstrås. Between 10th of January and 16th of February 2004 we did the following voyages:
03/04: Kristiansand - Antwerp. MAX 4500 MT Sulphuric acid.
04/04: Hamburg - Antwerp. 2 Parcels of Sulphuric acid.
05/04: Hamburg - Antwerp. MAX 4200 MT Sulphuric acid.
06/04: Hamburg - Ruisbroek, Belgium. Sulphuric acid.
07/04: Hamburg - Fredrikstad and Jössefjord, Norway. Sulphuric acid.
08/04: Kristiansand - Antwerp. MAX 4400 MT Sulphuric acid.
09/04: Hamburg - Antwerp. Sulphuric acid, MAX 1500 MT for BAYER and up to full cargo for BASF.
10/04: Hamburg - Antwerp. Sulphuric acidCancelled
10/04: Stenungsund - Mönsterås. Caustic Soda. I'm signing off when loading in Stenungsund.


Monday morning 16th of February and I woke up by knocking on my door. I looked at the watch, 0830!!!! Here I'm lolling around in bed all day long while cargo tanks are being topped off, nice.

I had a shower and I signed my paper and I had a chat with the guys in the CCR before
I left the ship with our Seagoing Personnel Manager. He had been onboard with copies of Chief Officers lost certificates.

I left the ship with no backward glances on a cold but sunny morning. It will be very nice to meet Sue again
and we will spend some “quality time” together before my next adventure. I don't know my next ship, but you only have to stay tuned to find out.

                  

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