Saturday, March 29, 2014

Underway - Hawaii

Well, it's been a year since I was hired with Dunlap and to reward me, they had me train a new guy. There's something wonderful about not feeling like the "new guy", and being able to pass on everything you've learned with regards to the job. Ironically, the new AB was in the same set of classes with me at PMI in February, and he recently moved to the tugs from the fishing industry. He's cooked quite a bit, but things are different and it's always a steep learning curve when you start with a new company. He asked me a million questions and I could tell he was a little overwhelmed with everything, but he will do fine. He was leaving to head north on the Gene Dunlap, while I was heading southwest on the Phyllis Dunlap towards Honolulu, Hawaii. Because our boat wasn't leaving until a day after the Gene, I was available to show him the ropes for a few hours and help him with a grocery run.

For the past year, I've strictly sailed on Alaska-bound boats, but this run came up and my boss switched a few folks around so that I could get some extra sea time. The Hawaii run happens 2x/month, and it takes about 2 weeks to get there. Apparently I'll have a day or two of free time to get off the boat before our 2-week trip back. I'm not really looking forward to 2 weeks of boredom and potentially rough waters, but I am looking forward to finally setting foot on Hawaii. When I was in the Navy, our carrier anchored offshore to bring supplies on, but we didn't get to go ashore. Here we are 22 years later and I'm getting a second chance and getting paid to go.

This boat is fairly new, built in 2001, and is exceptionally spacious. Apparently she rides a little tender, (like a bathtub I've been told), so well see what happens. There's some stuff brewing up off the coast that might illustrate that bathtub effect nicely, so time will tell. Apparently the crews on this run do a fair amount of fishing, so I'm looking forward to picking up some skills. This is also the only boat in the fleet with an exercise bike. It's a recumbent style bike, but it'll do the job and hopefully keep me in shape.

Time to pull lines. Gotta go. Aloha!