Thursday, November 27, 2008

back to where i started :)

so i was back in antibes, which ment to do the whole circus all over again. this time i contacted one of my new rumanien friends, who had just moved into a big flat in the hills of antibes. this place was something all new to me, all i had ever seen was old town and center of town. it was a bit of a walk, but we had the greatest view out over the bay. and since it was 7 of us, the rent wasn't all that bad.

my new flatmates were really cool, and a few of them i had met at the crew house i had stayed at, which made it easy to fit in. although, i never really have that much problem with that nowdays.. we had a house warming party, played drinking games and made more friends. all of them were new to the industry and had been there all summer looking for work. luckely it had been some daywork around for them, which you are dependent on as a beginner. it hasn't been easy on any people in the industry this year, my old friends including me, were also struggeling.
my dearest friend kat, invited me to go down to barcelona for a weekend. she was in marseilles on a boat, and i went down in a car and picked her up. we had both been thee before, but we love that city, and we both had friends who was working there at the time. we did lots of catching up and had lots of fun :) but we did actually get to do some sightseeing as well, and visited casa de bastillia. which is the villa designed by gaudi, 100 years ago. he is my favourite by the way..

but the money i had easily earned for a month, was also easily spent in 3 weeks, had to many friends who needed my company :) which ment i needed a new plan..

it doesn't always turn out as you think

i was so excited about joining a new boat, and at the same time nervous because it was my first job as a 2nd stew. but i have to admit that my reasons for taking this job was mainly because of the iteniery. she told me they were in malta, which i love and they were going to greece and then turkey. and it was just a temporary gig, how much could go wrong really?! it turned out that the boat had 22 people coming and going this season, which is quite a lot for 13 crew members. people were talking shit about eachother, no team work what so ever. sure they had been working long hours, but they hadn't bothered about solving their issues, which is hugely important when you live and work together. so i was caught in the middle, and tried to do the best of the situation.
as if the captain had listened to my conversation with a crew member, he suggested we have a crewdinner.. eat, drink and be merry!! always a good start right.. we went to this japanese place, has lots of sushi, tempura and sake!!! mmm... everyone loved it! then we went out on town in malta, which always end up retty wet! at least they were having some fun and relaxed a bit more.. getting over most of their problems.
after a week, i'd say we all had fun together... specially when we went to this minisitry of sound night, where eric prydz was supposed to be DJing. it was held in a cool outdoors veue, i had my new discodress on and i was ready to party... all night!! the music was great, and we danced away.. but i don't think eric prydz ever showed up!! but hey... it was totally worth it!!
but after 10 days in steamy malta, it was time to leave unfortunately.. to genova in italy. didn't expect it to be anything special since it's more of cruisline city. but we were situated right in the middle of town, and it hapened to b a MTV weeekend, and we listened to some really cool music... while running arund like crazy in old town. i did get time to see the aquarium as well, the biggest in europe apperently, pretty cool!
but after that, it was time to get serious. the monaco boatshow was happening and the owner was looking to buy a new bigger boat.. it can never be to big!
and because of that, he needed to save money. so i had to leave earlier than promised. yes it sucked, but that's what you have to be ready for in this industry. so they that sat me on a train back to antibes... and i was back where i started. but a little bit wiser and a little bit richer... ;)

Monday, September 8, 2008

parties and job offers!!

i always enjoy coming back to antibes, it's almost like my second home these days! it's winding narrow streets, the port and the pubs :) meeting up with some good friends, on different nights at different places... if it's not la gaffe, it's hop store, colonial or off course blue lady.
After a few days of agencies, i got a call from the chief stewardess on a 50 m motoryacht. i went there for an interview, but she told me that i would kick out the 2nd stew that was on there now, that she did not know she was being sacked! which i thought felt a bit weird... so i said no thank you! as soon as i came home i had another call, this time it was just for daywork, but paying 200 euros a day, to this i said, yes please.. thank you!
just to finsih this beautiful day off, we went to grasse, the perfume capital of france, you might have seen the movie or read the book about it. i had done both, so i expected a lot, and i'm sure it had been amazing in it's days.. but now it was just a normal french village in the hills. got at least a handmade perfume as a souvenir, which made my day...
believe it or not, but the following day i got another phone call. it was another job offer, for a 52 m yacht in malta, temporary only, but i had a good gut feeling about this one and she sounded nice on the phone. the deal was, that i was going to join them in one week. relaxing for a few days, then do a charter and the owners for monaco boatshow. and the pay wasn't quite good to... but my biggest carrot was the iteniery, greece and turkey.... haven't been over that way for a long time.
a great weekend had to be finished off with an awesome party, like an ibiza party on the beach ;) i partied hard and danced barefeet, and gave myself a time limit til 2 am, cause i had to get up early for the daywork... it became a huge success, i was fucked, had to be led home...
amazingly, i got up in time that morning and that week went pass very quickly, working long hours and had some fun in the evenings.. it was a nice boat, and we went up and down the coast near monaco.
all of a sudden, it was the weekend again.. and the plan was pretty much the same as the last one... party!! we were invited to a bbq birthday party on beach, on cap de antibes, where all the rich and famous have their luxurious villas.. a very nice setting! but after some wine and food, we needed some more action and decided to go to juan les pins. everyone else wanted to go to la village, where i've alreay been like a hundred times... but hey, it's who you go with, not where.. really ;) it ended up being a crazy night, got back early in the morning.. sunday we did nothing... just ate and slept, like any other sunday..
the time had come, i was taking a plane on monday afternoon to malta. joining my new boat, for some more adventures... and malta is the place to be!!
til next time..;D

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

it wasn't to shabby after all :D

i got really excited when i heard that we were ancoring outside the alpha blondie concert. one of my favourite reggae bands ever! i saw them two years ago in st martin, caribien... but this was actually much better, believe it or not! it was the whole atmosphere i think, lying in the safety net on a sailing boat, sky full of stars, drinking beer and listening to great tunes pumping out of the speakers!! we've ha an relaxing day to, withonly the owner and his wife and kid on board, he wasvey undertsanong that we needed some down time... cause just in a couple ofdays we were going to st tropez, where we wold be very busy again..
before their friends would come on, they tried to get as much lone time as possible. when we arrived at the beach ouside st tropez, they wanted to be taken to the nude beach, where they spend all afternoon, doing god knows what!! in the meantime, the other stewardess wanted to make a special surprise for them. so she decorated their whole bedroom with rose pedals and candels, it looked amazing... wish it would have been my bedroom...!! when they came back and saw the room, just locked the door and we didn't see them for hours!! when it was finally time for dinner, both of them came out with big smiles up to their ears!!
even if the captain was a retard, he tried to be nice sometimes.. cause following day he let us just hang out in the sun, reading a book, watching the waves. then all of us were allowed to go out that night in st tropez. and i, off course, had to do it to the max, as usual!! lots of mojitos later, we had afterparty on the boat... dancing and talking! it was great!! that's so great with a boat, no neighbours can complain!! didn't feel to good the next day though, had a really bad hungover... probably looked white like a ghost! feeling really sick til late in the evening.. good thing i'm used to it by now, and i could continue working!?
eventually we reached cannes, but there was no berth organised as usual, which really upset me... cause i had a really good friend i wanted to meet up with there... but again, they were really nice about it, and let me off for two hours after serving them lunch. i met up with my friend, and had a really sweeet time on the beach!!!
so all in all, can't really complain about this job at all. i even stayed an extra night because they organised a crew dinner when we got back to toulon, all paid by he owner. we had a really nice evening... lots of wine... and then lots of beer. our chef was canning it.. he got really pissed, and gave some drunken confessions... but all good!! it was his first job on a boat, and even if it was only 18 days, he understood the frustration you get when being at sea..and not being able to get off when ever you want or be with who ever you want... i start to understand now why alot of sailors, have someone waiting in every port...;)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

first days of caos

My first day, was a very long day... it was so many things that hadn't been done on the boat. and the owner was coming on the next day!! there had been plenty of time to get ready, but the captain had saved everything to the last minute!! The last chef had been fired, and hadn't bothered about cleaning out the galley properly, so guess who had the honors!? me off course...jipppieeee! and i tell you, i have never seen a more unconventient fridge in my life! really tiny, and down by the floor, you had to crawl in to get anything out of there!! and then slide backwards to get out of there, it was lots of water in there from the coolng system, and old traces of food...yummiiee!!
that's when i started to think about my agreed salary, it was way to little!! i had sold myself for a sack of potatos basicly!
i roled into bed that night after a looong shower, fell a sleep finally, and i had a worrying feeling in my stomache that tomorow would be just as fun!
in the morning, everybody were running around like lost chickens, in a henhouse!! when the chef arrived he sorted out some things for us, which gave us some hope! apparently he was the owners future son in law, and had been on the boat as a guest not very long ago, so he had some good tips up his sleeve and told me not to worry that much!!
we sailed off to marseilles, as soon as the owners arrived, there we were picking up two more guest. and also we had a berth reserved there, and as soon as we got the opportunity, we went off for a glas of wine at the nearest bar. celebrating that we had finsihed our first day of charter.
the next day, i was a little tired, probably one glass to many the night before. but it was nothing i couldn't handle, so when the chef invited me to come along for some food shopping in the cute town of cassis, i said yes off course! anything to be able to get a shore for a while, it was very nice but not big and it was packed with tourists... we treated ourselfes with a really nice ice-cream, while waiting for the tender to pick us up again..
we stayed in that bay for the night, and i experienced another amazing mediteranien sunset, i never get tired of watching one... yeah okey, maybe i am a little romantic after all!
since i was the only one in charge of the service, it was a lot of things to keep on top off. which almost made me jump over board that day! the guest had told me to find a specific white wine, i went through all the storage, the whole fridge (which i messed up), and after all that she realised that it wasn't a white wine, but a red! ohhh, i'm sorry... i just looked through the whole boat for nothing!! don't you just love when that happens?!
And just to finish off the day, they stayed up till 2.30 am drinking champagne and eating apperetifs, which means i wont sleep until they are in bed...
but luckely, i had a very sweet and understanding co-stewardess, who helped me in the morning so i could ge some extra sleep... there is a god after all!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

love being experienced!!

On monday it was really time to get down to business.. checked out of the crewhouse, ammas. which is a really friendly place. moved into the house of a friend of mine, who i know since a few years back. and who has saved me in crises many times... i went to three agencies and showed my face again. most of them were happy to see me again, and it didn't sound like my situation was to bad, getting into the season that late. you have to understand that it's kind of tiring to do this process over and over, write your CV,and walk around the whole antibes to visit all the agencies. it's not done in one day! next day i went to blue water, and she told me about a temporary job on a sailing boat. it sounded nice and something i hadn't done before. the captain called me the same day, and i decided to take it. since my account had been running rather thin after south america.
the next day, it was off to toulon with the train. i arrived at the boat, and were inroduced to the crew. they were mostly french, which i unfortunately have had bad experience with before. but i tried to keep an open mind, and not assum the worst. but straight away i heard bad things about the captain, and i noticed them myself pretty soon to. he was unorganised and wasn't intersted to create any kind of team work, which is one of his most important tasks. luckely the owner was a nice guy... so maybe we could get a pretty good charter after all!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

back with a booom ;d

First of all, an apology is in it's place for those readers we had gathered to our blog, for not writing in a while. But you have to keep in mind, that to get good storys, you have to be out there and collect them now and then. And you would presume that all these fancy boats would have internet on board, unfortunately not... i went away for 18 days without internet, and i think i accepted that i'm now a internet addict...
-hi, my name is alex, i'm an addict!! but lets get back to where the storys ended...
My plan to go from Madrid to Antibes cheap, went up in smoke when i had to pay 110 euros for a train ticket from Paris. It was only a 4 hour trip, but that didn't seem to matter... oh well, it was just nice to be back in one piece!
Arriving late in the evening, it was nice to be taken care of, by a dear friend,who took me under his wing and let me stay at his place for the night, half broke as i was!
Then the next day it was time to get started, but since it was weekend i could only organise a place to stay. met a swedish girl which knew about a nice crewhouse, a bit out of center but cheaper. and after that was organised we went to the beach, swam and had som drinks. i had done all my duties for today.. time to warm up for the evening.
so we went back to the crewhouse, bought som beers on the way. The party had already begun, and not very surprisingly an old yachtie friend stayed here to... so the night would end up messy for sure! plus we had some rumaniens which helped to bring the party up a notch. when we were slightly tipsy, we went to juan les pins... thought we might as well start there since we always end up there anyway! a great start at tequila bar, mojitos and tequilas flying all ove the place! then the only place everybody could get in to was minimal, even though my last experience here was not the best! we had to..i know things you have to do sometimes huh..! order a big bottle of rum, and get a VIP table. and you can figure out for yourself how it went after that..
in next club we got split up by some reason no one knew... i ended up at la village wih my crazy friend... and history repeated it self!! ooops!! but in the morning all was back to normal again..
we had a relaxing day at the toilet beach, called that because it looks like a toilet seat, then bought some beers of course.. just so we could feel normal again... played some frisbee to, with great coordination!!
we all enjoyed it to the maximum, because we all had to get up in morning again, look for a job. gather enrgy for a new week...where we would do it all over again...