Monday, 25 July 2016

11.1: Spain and France, take two, part one

Sitno >>?<<

Maybe 71.

Shitty poem #108

A man tried to be clever
He said: words were invented for lies
A woman with nothing to prove said:
Words were invented by men to keep up
I will lie to you with a smile
I will lie to you with a look
Heck, I will lie to you by my very presence.
A man will build a whole epic poem
To try to prove his love and devotion
True or pretend as it may be
A woman will listen to it
And by the quality of her lie
In her kiss, smile or silence,
You will know how much she gives a damn.

Turnaround in Southampton.
G's face is getting a bit better, or at least that's how he sounds. The antibiotics seem to have taken effect. If it got just a little worse, they would have to cut his face open and he'd end up with another sexy scar right down the jawline. It's very bright and warm. I am waiting for the day to begin. Some are having breakfast, though most people are disembarking. I'm waiting for three people to come anew: the new videographer, the new manager and the Land Manager, who never responded to my resignation. Am I going home today? Am I staying on till late September? Am I ever working on another ship again? 

Doctor's line of the week (at eight in the morning)
Me: "How are you, doc?"
He: "If I start talking about it, I'll be late for diner."

Still here... I got the English variety of 'fuck you' from LandManager: 'I have to say I am very disappointed. Would you like to leave sooner?'... It is marginally better than being left behind on a dock, sitting on my suitcase in the rain, but we agreed we'll give it the next cruise to make up my mind, see what the new people are like. 
I wish I could say that not knowing each and every cruise whether I'll be fired in the end is unnerving, but... How is that different from what I've been feeling since I arrived?

Of the new people, only the female got on so far. She might have been tired or upset, but she didn't smile much when I waved at her. SLSB is livid, because his replacement hasn't arrived. He didn't even help me with the settings after he told me to shoot the embarcration (haven't ever really done it before, least of all with Mark), he just said: "You know your camera," and walked away. I had to shoot the whole embarcation completely alone. I was scared shitles. Because we hadn't used Canon before, and because my lens is, ironically, a lot better than what we used hitherto, quite a bit of too much of reality may show up on the photos. We sold photos softly focused and light and flattering. Maybe if I shoot them in a much higher iso, I will diminish some of the clarity? Hmm..  I shot them slightly brighter and slightly darker in pairs, hoping to let the new manager decide which he thinks are more usable... Alas. No new manager. 
So, I don't fucking know what to feel or think. 
I know I am nervous. Am gonna go eat something.

Reasons for staying:
Travelling (we'll be going to Hundested again)
The ship is fun
The food is good
I make some money
I get to buy comics
And postcards
May see people like DOo someday again
I get to photograph some amazing stuff
I'm losing weight
Kitchen is not ready yet

Reasons for going home:

Sitno >>70<<

We may be crossing the Bay of Biscay.. The weather seems brilliant and yet we're jumping up and down. No matter. I'm on the pill :p
We are four strangers now: they young and pissed off party girl videographer, the not that bad looking but very quiet and unhappy to be here manager-in-training, the very pleased with himself, bordering on happy camper SLSB and me. I feel older and less intelligent by the minute. Like I've detached from the ship and am having a sleep over in some odd country club, where everyone is either English and rich or Filipino and servant. I should be the CBA party drunk, but there is too much of my father in me. I give a shit. The cutest scene today belonged to a completely new Filipino waitress, whom I said Hello to in the gallery and: Are you very new?... She showed me a pack of seasickness pills in her hands and smiled apologetically: VERY new. 
My Maja finally checked in, though she's pissing me off. She writes she didn't want to send the emails she wrote, because she hates self pity. Well, I fucking hate it when people think all they ever need to write is happy happy stuff. 
Look at me, for fuck'ssakes. I write five-page long blog entries whining about myself EVERY DAY. How is that not pro level self-pity??

Shitty poem #109
Tug apart
The lifestrings of my heart
Will make world easier to weave
Look away 
any other day
As I return myself to me
Who am I to me?..

Self-serving philosophy just before formal:
So who am I today, sitting on this chair of introspection, one floor above the impro studio, five minutes late and two seasickness pills closer to homesickness? World is totally blue. Incredibly rich blue sea, slowly swelling and being pretty with itself, curlying only just a little with the wind. Very few ships or oil rigs interrupt the horizon. The sky is the palest torquise at the horizon, sunburnt in the midriff and viole(n)t cobolt at the top. The curtains are still blue, the seats and the tinted windows. I am dressed in black and my iPad cover is green. We are the pretenders. 

... I should think, though, that the thing that bothers me the most is that a little while ago I ate a gluten-free sandwich with very thin slices of beef which was deliberately very underdone. Though delicious in itself, the thought of me eating raw meet disturbs me. It feels savage and wrong. I just can't stop thinking about it. Rich people problems, I know. Looks like the day's been good. 

Sitno >>69<<

Second of the three sea days. Not sure, maybe because SLSB and FPP set up such high standards, the new teammates seem kind of ... Lame, almost. The video girl, whom we shall call, let's see... 2C4S, is beyond bothering with anything. She is too young, too cute, too rich and too posh to be anything but bored, (if you ask her), lying on the counter, staying out very late, sleeping in very late, hating having to be here, too bored to talk to anyone, too CBA even to do what she's here to do, which is video... In three days she managed a really crappy five minute preview. The shoppies and I stood and watched it and thought... Yikes. That is REALLY bad. But I know. I was her three months ago. She's new to the ship. Her photos are awful, pretty much same as mine were when I arrived, except that she has a university degree in photography and has three years ship experience... If I try to say 'this is how we did it...' in best case I get a snarl: Don't talk to me like that in front of customers. Of course SLSB said the same to her as he did to me: 'Nobody will judge you the first day... ' Meant it, too. 
It took me T H I S much willpower not to say: Except that part when you write to LandManager to have her replaced...
In the room, the extend of our conversations go like this:
She complains: "The food on this ship is crap."
... "This room stinks."
... "Whose suitcase is that?"
... "Oh, I've never really had to sleep on the top bunk before.”
And I mostly just go "Er..."

But poor SLSB is trying hard to turn the keys to the kingdom over to the new manager, he even went to the hairdresser and tried to get himself a much cooler new haircut. (Tried his best.) Walks around without his jacket on, his tiny chicken chest thrust out. Problem is, the new manager is also from the same country and also of small stature, but handsome, easy going and kind of cool. I haven't seen him perform yet, or lose temper, but so far he is shy, polite, friendly and easy to talk to. I have no doubt we will clash at some point, or he will fail to make some kind of goal. So far, he is okay. So SLSB is trying desperately to be okay to the new girl, too. To me, he is milking the last days we have together for all they are worth. A serpent biting you over and over again would be more tender. And the cutest part, I really find myself on full-blown Stockholm syndrome about him. When the new girl chuckled: 'THIS is the packages you have? How do ever make any money?'
My first thought was: How DARE you question the all-knowing-ness of my SLSB??

Course 2C4S's former manager, who is probably why she was banished here, hit her a little. Or it was because she is really crappy. Dunno yet. Depends whom you ask. Literally backslapped her biceps during an argument, in public, she says. So my decision to leave the agency was not a bad one. There are some frightful managers here. Anyhoo. I won't make this blog about them, picking at whatever negative features they may posess. Ships in the night, the lot of them. I have loveletters, postcards and slopchest lists to write (Britvic tonic will serve me well here, when it'll be so hot, and hopefully this roomate won't drink all of it..) and gangways to figure out. I don't know if I should try to do things the way SLSB did them. Maybe they sold more than mine or maybe they didn't. But I don't think it was the density of the pics, I think it might have been the framing... Mind, he did all his framing in post-production and I am not allowed to do that, so... Fuck it. 68 days to go. Five more cruises. I can do this. I am good at this shit. 

Ate a really nice fruit salad for diner today. Wore a size 14 blouse, too, which still looks like it may explode on me. I HAVE been blessed with amazing breasts - the thinner I get, the more huge they seem. I appear bizzarely disproportionate. I have gone from the obese numbers and am now simply fat: big tummy and fat arms, the rest kind of normal. Fleshy. My hips are unusually small for a chubby girl, and so is my head, but the boobs and tummy are huge. Now imagine all that in a tight synthetic uniform :D It frightens small children around the ship. :p

Sitno >>68<<

Watched a lady knit while looking at the ocean all morning. Most tranquil thing I have ever seen, involving humans, oceans and knitting.
Involving the rest of creation, am just reading about Seven Sisters by way of Bryson... And I have to stop reading about land travel and trekking and hiking, I am not a fucking Hobbit these days, I am a pirate wanna-be. Of all the books in all my drawers and wardrobes and shelves, I have none that wouldn't involve things I cannot have at the moment? Come on! 
... Am tempted to start writing Dread, now that my mind is oddly calm, and idle. The part that's taking place on a ship. Reasons against: may be rude to start a new book before the old one is printed... And I never know when my mind may go to use the bathroom again... And I don't trust machinery enough to write ten pages of a novel and have no way of securing it... 

Other than that... Bognor is the size of a wallnut today. Holding desperately onto my sock as I stride around. He dares not sleep, knowing I can switch to desperate depression at a whim, but his size, that is out of his command and today, for all his livelyness, he is tiny. 
Now let me read something else. Anything else. 

Haha, Larry the Mess Keeper told us (and acted) such a cute Drill story today :D They staged a fire simulation in his cabin without warning, so there he is, just getting ready for work, getting out of a shower, when the Fire Team breaks in and yells him out, emergency-like. He is wearing but a small towel. What is he suppose to do? Where is he suppose to go? ... So that's how we had naked Larry (and he is not at all bad-looking, one of those single young men who think every available free hour spent in the gym will bring him closer to a woman's embrace) hiding on Deck 4 corridor for about half an hour :D

Sitno >>68<<

I walked onto the topmost deck today at seven (the first thing to do was get my white blouse dirty, as the ship is covered in some yellow dust deal, mixed with rain), into a world of total Amazon. Greenish brown soup of a river, the air so dense it was only a matter of hours before someone announced CodeAlpha, storm clouds only marginally more dark gray than the thick haze parked across the plain, the rain random and very hot, flies, dragonflies and mosquitos everywhere, the smells pugnant and abundant and very, very warm.
I love it.

We've passed the lock, which 2C4S didn't bother to get up to film, and are now sliding down the channel into the city. There was that pretty three-wing bridge opening and half the ship out on the deck looking at it. Neup, didn't bother to film that either. Arrival to the city. Neup. SLSB came to me to say how pissed the Captain is because she was not on the bridge for the Sail-in and after I woke her up, she said: fuck him, nobody told me and when I shoot the Sail-in it will be on a nice day. 

The new manager scheduled me for the gangway for three hours; we'll see how that works out. I don't care anymore, really. We talked about the black-and-white photography session that's been promised to us and never happened, and what sort of people would be cool for Seascape, if we dared ask... When we talked about traveling and I mentioned I hitchhiked pennyless across a desert once, 2C4S happily cried: Oh, were you homeless?!
No, I did it because I liked it.
The ship doctor reacted similarly when I told him I've resigned.
"Excuse me? You resigned? What will you do now?"
"I'll do the same thing, just on land."
"Is your husband employed?"
"Sure, he is a controller of the city post-office. He's a logistics's engineer and is studying to become a security engineer, a detective."
"Then why the hell are you here?"
Well... Because... i LIKE it? 
Why is that so hard for people to comprehend? That someone does something because it's fun? 

Doctor is a cool guy, though. He acts, oftentimes, like he is really fed up with everybody seeking medical attention, and if you're in need of it he will tell you to quit fucking around - but he will never let you sink into harm in a million years and will double-check everything that's possibly wrong with you.
I know, because after the three hours of gangway in 40'C today, sizzling Seville, I don't remember much of what happened next. I know I came to in the medical center while he was snarling at the world in general, saying, in juicy Croatin: ”I can't fucking sleep because of you, I will fucking kill you and your whole fucking photo department. All you cause me is problems."
How the heck they carried me into the ship or who has my camera, I have no idea. Supposedly it's okay. SLSB seemed worried - the first thing he said was: But you had break at eleven, no, we check security. You had break. You told doctor you had break at eleven, no? 
I vaguely remember him saying, over a crowd of ten or so people who grouped around me when I was on the ground: But the groups stopped at eleven thirty, why are you still here? She is confused. The groups stopped at eleven thirty. I don't know why she still here.
... Because the schedule on the wall says from 10:30 - 13:30 and the last time I walked in in the middle of my gangway to get some warm coffee, because I was freezing, you nearly murdered me for missing ten people? 
The scary nurse made me eat jelly and ice-cream and gave me electrolites to drink. I didn't have a stroke, my body temperature and pressure returned to perfectly normal after half an hour of hydration and hugging a wet towel full of ice. I remember those ice blocks. My roomie left them in the shower once. So she suffered a near-heat-stroke as well, not too long? Is that what the doctor meant? 
I know what you're thinking. I'm a desert person. I should know how to take care of myself. Like, here is a list of things you don't do in 40'C at NOON:
Wear uncomfortable (and plenty) of synthetic clothing (check)
Stand, (yet alone dance around customers), in the sun for three hours (check)
Fail to eat, drink or get enough shaddow (check)
Breathe air that is more water than oxygen in abnormall low air pressure... (Check)

What you SHOULD do is sit down in shade and cold until you feel the sickness passing (neup. I thought it would pass. Looks like I did sooner.) The doctor said: Look at me. You are not hot any longer. This room is nicely cool. Breathe normally. Drink slowly. What is your real name, by the way? I'm sorry, I know I keep calling you Mojca.

(Mojca is a pretty little girl from a fantasy black-and-white movie famous in my country back in the day.)

I'll sleep until five, then will drink and eat something again. I have to send a text to G so he won't be worried, but will try to skip the near-heat stroke bit and say I just got a little warm. 
Here's a fitting poem: 

Today I will shower
For five, six, eight fucking hours.