The past few weeks have been a blur. The pace of completion of the various spaces onboard has risen dramatically. Many hundreds of outfitters swarm over the vessel adding the finishing touches. Not just to the ship I might add but to us as well as we have been measured for new uniforms in all departments.
I have never seen carpet laid so quickly. It normally takes days to get a kitchen fitted at home yet here wardrobes and book cases and other woodwork is cut and fitted in a matter of hours.
French polishers roam the ship touching up any imperfections their trained eyes see. Gangs of cleaners are polishing, vacuuming, cleaning and tweaking soft furnishings into place.
The crew have moved onboard and gangs of them are distributing the thousands of bits and pieces that need to be put out into position from waste paper baskets to linen to fire extinguishers to boxes of tissues, cleaning chemicals, paint. You name it I see it being transported around the ship into position. All the while the crew chefs keep this army well fed with excellent fare produced in the crew galley.
Safety duties training has started in earnest. A team of training officers from our head office are onboard familiarising the crew with their new duties, with new equipment, with the latest technologies and on it goes. Day in day out. The various fire alarms and klaxons are tested relentlessly. In go the ear plugs to dull the sound of the fire alarm being tested continuously for 2 hours to check the horns and hooters don’t fail whilst a team goes around the ship measuring the decibels to ensure it conforms to the rules.
The ship is coming alive. Systems are coming on line whilst others are being tested and commissioned.
The grey, cool and sometimes very wet weather is not deterring us. Of course it dampens the spirits somewhat but the team spirit is amazing. I see crew in waterproof ponchos in the rain on the quay passing boxes in a line onto the ship. They are chatty and smiling and joking but the work never stops. Time is counting down and there is still much to do.
Various inspectors from our flag state of the Bahamas are due to come soon. We must demonstrate that we know how to use all the new gizmos at our finger tips to deal with whatever situation could possibly arise for the safety of all onboard. Auditors will come to check we have our safety management system onboard, in place and running.
So I will leave you with a few more snaps to keep you going until you come see for yourself.