For some of us Day Two started rather early! The midnight to four am watch started with a wealth of new information and routines to absorb; and all this after being dragged from our lovely cosy bunks! The watch was uneventful although every opportunity to wake John up was sought! There was any excuse to wake him up; imminent collision with close by ferries, dragging the anchor, hearing ‘Lord Nelson’ called on the radio and any number of alarms ringing! Fortunately for John (and us) none of the above occurred!
Following a short snooze and hearty breakfast the all important evacuation drill took place which went according to plan. After being evacuated onto a rain swept deck it was all hands to cleaning duties for the unfortunately named Happy Hour! Decks washed, heads sluiced and rails polished, back down to the lower mess for a well deserved cuppa.
No rest for the wicked though and straight back out in all our wet weather gear to the bracing stations for some bracing on a rather bracing morning (not our joke - oh how we laughed)! Whether you were letting go, hauling in, sweating, tailing, coiling or watching for the marks (one leather tag or
two) it was the first step to becoming fully fledged sailors of the ‘Lord Nelson’.
The Captain decided to delay our departure to sea. The wind and swell weren’t ideal and we were all glad not to have to endure a 12 hour roller-coaster that we wouldn’t have been able to get off. But later in the afternoon the sea was looking a little more forgiving and we prepared for departure.
Raising the anchor was another team effort typical of many activities on board. Three down below assisting the Bosun’s mates stow chain and two more above hosing off the mud and sea-life as the anchor was hauled in.
Although the wind had abated slightly, there was still much fun to be had setting sail in the boisterous seas off the Isle of Wight. Bumping into people in the dark as the ship lurches is a great way of meeting new people.
Back on watch again, and under the supervision of the "Officer of the watch"
we took the helm and set course 220o - France…
That’s all for today – "Aft Starboard Watch" – Lord Nelson.