Öckerö gymnasium

Bend your back and break your bones

Sometimes the life onboard is just not as calm and relaxing as you think. The uncertainty of the wind can make your day from a real relaxing and lazy day to a day of bending your back and breaking your bones, especially when the wheatears are working against you.

I´ve must have fallen asleep again after the firewatch rouse me. My cabinmates where to no help with keeping the time since I´m the only one awake and in full health. I climbed down from my bunk, jumped in my clothes and harness and rushed up to quarterdeck. I sneaked in the lines of tired teenagers just in time before the first mate gave the order to strike eight bells. The seas where rough tonight and I noticed the tired and slightly green faces among my fellow watch members. Luckily, I´m not one of those poor fellows who can´t stand a minute in the galley without spilling their guts out over the rail. Earlier today we had some unhappy officers about the cleaning of the sole in the galley. Usually we do it without supervision but now the main cook needs to inspect the results. If we fail the inspection, we have to redo it and if it´s not perfectly clean in the morning we’ll get rouse 06:00 in the morning to redo it once again. I was the galley rat today so I was responsible for the cleaning of the galley sole. After a couple of hours we where done so we called upon the main cook to inspect our tear, sweat, blood and the fear of getting roused by a displeased officer in the form of a clean floor. After a strict inspection we were cleared. We made our way to main deck.

The wind had turned due east a couple of hours earlier so we had a short upwind leg which made us do a lot of jibes. The tired and worn out port watch where laying all over quarterdeck half awake, half asleep. I joined the pile of exhausted trainees to rest out a bit from all the cleaning in the galley. Just as I sat down our CO shouted:

“Jibe around on port side!”

The watch scrambled and we started to heave, brace, trim and sheeting home the sails. When we where back on course again I could feel my hands acing like never before, and my shirt was drowned in sweat. I sat myself down by the cosy red compass light, and shut my eyes just for ten seconds, I thought. I woke up to the order to stand at attention for the guard relief. I could barely hear the Captains voice during the briefing of midships watch, the only thing I could think about was my bunk. I straightened my back when I heard the eight bells and once we were relieved I rushed down below deck and into my bunk and fell asleep before I even shut my eyes closed.

By: Simon L. Forsgren, port watch


Öckerö seglande gymnasieskola
Björnhuvudsvägen 45
475 31 Öckerö

Telefon: 031-97 62 00
e-post: kommun@ockero.se