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Old 22-05-2024, 03:09   #16
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Re: Any big ship guys here?

The biggest obstacle for former big-ship people to overcome, I've noticed, is the obsessive habits fostered by bullying bo'suns who yell as a substitute for communicating. This is especially prevalent in the "tall ship" institutional sail training world, where often the insecure and incompetent are given authority beyond their means, and take it out on the kids they're meant to help. I know many who CANNOT belay to a pin in any way other than what their particular tall ship bo'sun required; will not go near an edge without a lifejacket; can't imagine being barefoot on a boat, and worst of all, have absolutely no initiative: they can't act without a shouted order.
Perhaps in the actual merchant mariner world things are different, but even so, I'll bet learning to relax and figure out your own way to run your own boat is the biggest hurdle.
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Old 22-05-2024, 10:29   #17
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Re: Any big ship guys here?

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Originally Posted by Benz View Post
The biggest obstacle for former big-ship people to overcome, I've noticed, is the obsessive habits fostered by bullying bo'suns who yell as a substitute for communicating. This is especially prevalent in the "tall ship" institutional sail training world, where often the insecure and incompetent are given authority beyond their means, and take it out on the kids they're meant to help. I know many who CANNOT belay to a pin in any way other than what their particular tall ship bo'sun required; will not go near an edge without a lifejacket; can't imagine being barefoot on a boat, and worst of all, have absolutely no initiative: they can't act without a shouted order.
Perhaps in the actual merchant mariner world things are different, but even so, I'll bet learning to relax and figure out your own way to run your own boat is the biggest hurdle.
I cant speak for organizations, I don't know and never sailed with.

First Sail Training is not about learning to sail. Sounds Strange.
Sail Training is about life training. learning how to work together. Without the vast majority of the trainees figuring this out.

I sailed with a very laid back organization, The Ocean Youth Club. It was a member of the STA. Registered as a Yacht (Pre Marquesa). With mostly RYA certified volunteer watch leaders.
Some were better than others. Enthusiasm and the ability to communicate with kids particularly the ones who came from tough backgrounds. Was more important than ability to sail.
Shouting about belaying pins or anything else was not acceptable behavior on any vessel I sailed on.
The STA's Winston Churchill Malcolm Miller. Had a more formal navy based style. A couple of Professionals and volunteers. There was more deck scrubbing and 2 heaving I suppose. The goal wasn't to train kids to be sailors. The Goal was to train kids to get along. Gain confidence, and work together.
Many thousands of youngster really enjoyed their time. It was only a week or a couple of weeks. Some were relatively wealthy private school kids. Scouts. Other similar groups. Some from Children's homes. Some were sentenced and sent by a judge.

I was recruited by a Particular Skipper because I was a professional seafarer.
So he had a reliable back up watch Keeper. I didn't know anything about sailing. I knew how to keep a navigational watch. This was actually not common with the organization i sailed with. I did know a nice young lady a year or two older than me who was one of the first girls in the UK to complete a 2nd Mate FGN.
A few volunteers were retired MN. Retired or Ex RN. Other Services. By far the majority were recreational sailors with an RYA YM. Butchers, Bakers, Candlestick Makers ect. They started volunteering in junior roles and worked there way up.
The big thing they enjoyed working with kids.
I would not have stuck around. If I had not liked and respected the Skipper's I sailed with.
There are other sailing vessels I personally would avoid. As with commercial companies.

The STA always had 1 Volunteer MN certified watch Keeper. in addition to a full time Master and Mate.
Their job and mine Keep the Vessel safe.
Many of the Watch Leaders had started volunteering. After having sailed as crew.

I personally liked the laid back easy going, lets just have fun, less formal atmosphere of the OYC. More than the more formal STA.

It was 40 years ago times have changed. The STA is now history. The OYC has declined in size survived a name change replaced all its vessels but was still in existence.
Today most of its full time and voluntary crew are RYA certified and work their way up.

I haven't sailed with them in decades, I don't live in the UK anymore. I do miss sailing with them.
It paid nothing but was one of the most rewarding jobs I ever had. And I sailed right round the UK.

There is a sailing vessel near me. Its not for me for my reasons. Kids who sail with them say its great.
I don't expect any of the crew to have really learned how to sail. They are probably quite useful crew. If you know how to skipper.

As for Life jackets, Harness's and work boots on deck, I would not send my kids out with any organization who didn't require modern safety standard and PPE.
Sailing on my boat, bare foot, shorts, a pleasant attitude. Is all that I require.
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Old 22-05-2024, 11:58   #18
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Re: Any big ship guys here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Benz View Post
The biggest obstacle for former big-ship people to overcome, I've noticed, is the obsessive habits fostered by bullying bo'suns who yell as a substitute for communicating. This is especially prevalent in the "tall ship" institutional sail training world, where often the insecure and incompetent are given authority beyond their means, and take it out on the kids they're meant to help. I know many who CANNOT belay to a pin in any way other than what their particular tall ship bo'sun required; will not go near an edge without a lifejacket; can't imagine being barefoot on a boat, and worst of all, have absolutely no initiative: they can't act without a shouted order.
Perhaps in the actual merchant mariner world things are different, but even so, I'll bet learning to relax and figure out your own way to run your own boat is the biggest hurdle.
I have not run into any bullying bosuns in my relatively short career, but most of them could swear in the laguage of the person they were adressing.

Being a bully on a ship is a risky proposition, given there are numeours opportunities in a working day to kill someone and make it iook like an accident.

Insisting that ropes are tied or belayed in a prescribed way is helpful to the next guy or gal who might have to untie it in the dark, so the night vision of the lookouts is not compromised.

Also it could save the pilot's life as he is getting of the pilot ladder and the launch crew has to untine his briefcase and move away from 20000 tons of steel moving at 10 knots as quickly as possible.

PFD's on all the time, no exceptions.

I don't think there is square foot on my current boat that does not have something I can step on or stub against.
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