Sunday, July 27, 2008

Island Clouds

Everywhere you look today it's the same. Serenity in aqua blue. The
water is millpond calm, the clouds little white islands interspersed to
the horizon at regular intervals. The mornings have all been clear, the
sky pin pointed with so many stars it appears that there is actually
more light than darkness. The air has been warm, the water just as warm,
and the pool has been full thanks to having discovered the "Pool Pump",
a vital piece of equipment paralleled with the fire main designed to
ensure an optimum amount of clean sea water is constantly being put into
the pool every second of the day. Yes the Ro/Ro life is good in the
summer. Beyond the reach of iPhones, news media, television and all the
other hassles of life on shore we stand our watches, work our over time,
eat three squares a day, and entertain ourselves.

Today we had our weekly at sea Barbecue. The stewards department pulled
out all the stops; Devilled eggs and macaroni salad, shrimp cocktails
and relishes, brauts, steaks, seasoned chicken on the grill, the works.
The pool was primed and somebody's iPod piped outside on the fixed
speakers. Of course I took my food and stuck it in the fridge to save it
for midnight as three in the afternoon is when I like to start reading
and drift into sleep.

I recently finished Nathaniel Philbrick's newest book 'Mayflower' and
have gotten about half way through Abraham Stoker's 'Dracula'. Anything
Philbrick writes, if you're into maritime or American history is gold.
Stoker has a good story but its god awfully slow and written in that
Victorian English vernacular that is tedious and overwhelmingly sappy.
I've also been watching the BBC's Planet Earth series which makes me
want to be come a field biologist and swim with manta rays.

We will be arriving in the English Channel in about three days, the
weather still looks favorable and we can expect a couple of nights in
Bremerhaven. I'm certainly looking forward to burning off some steam
with the help of In Bev's fine line of international products including
the newly acquisitioned "King of Beers". They own Becks Beer as well,
the local Brew where we are headed.

Well it's off to another mid watch. Six hours of darkness terminated by
a glorious open ocean sunrise, maybe an amplitude if I'm feeling
motivated and plenty of Radio Head on the iPod to fill the void in
between. I'll have my barbecue too which is a welcome change  from the
Kashi Cereal I keep stashed on the bridge. Here's to another highly
caffeinated morning.

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