Thursday 30 April 2015

The Ghost of Voyage Past

Bremerhaven, just after sunrise: Fram arrives at the Columbus Cruise Centre, and almost casually we make fast. At this hour people tend to talk a little less and rather hold on to their coffee mug. As many of our travellers have arranged for an early connection, the bus transfer to the train station leaves relatively soon.
And then - the trip is over. FRAM, without further ado, casts the lines and heads for the open sea, destination Dover, England.
And this is a rare thing: A ship without guests. For full 28 hours crew and staff are among themselves.
The dancefloor, full of life and laughter only a day ago, is now deserted, our only company are the cargo ships that pass by the windows on both sides of the ship.
Oh, good for you! the esteemed follower of the blog may think, a day of leisure, well-deserved. Far from it...
There are many things that need to be done but have to wait while we are running our "normal" business. Equipment needs to be counted, store-rooms need to be arranged and cleared, floors to be shampooed, excursion descriptions to be updated, and, and, and. Honestly, there is not much of a difference in terms of workload. The rhythm, however, is a gentle one, as there is no fixed schedule. As long as things will be done, they can be done at any time.
So, as a bit of a reward after job well done, there is even a staff movie night - with pizza and popcorn.
As I said - a rare thing.