Tarmac ribbons criss-crossing the landscape, dusty back roads twisting between the cool shadows of ancient pines, and less traveled pathways connecting present to past, all I wander, seeking, seeing, with my keyboard and camera capturing scenes and stories to share with you.

Now in its seventh year, this venue has become an important part of my life, a place where I can express my thoughts and feelings about the things I see and do, hoping the process brings me a bit closer to friends and family who enjoy sharing my sometimes chaotic and often nonlinear observations and ideas. A journal, I suppose, but one with which I find pleasure in thinking others are alongside me on my journey.

Comments, thoughts, or just a friendly chat, use the response box below or email me at patrickgroleau@gmail.com.

November 7, 2019

AT SEA: THE CREW WHO CARE FOR ME

  [P.S. CREW MEMBERS: please, please-please-please, go ahead and send the "www.patrickgroleau.com" or "https://patrickgroleau.blogspot.com" links to your family and friends back home ... these images are for all of you to share and enjoy ... later, most likely around the beginning of december, i will post on my journal a link to a public folder where you will be able to download the full-quality print-versions of these photographs ... and, again, thank you]   

... my first thought was to use the word "staff" in the this entry's title ... then i thought about all the emergency drills i see them doing while we're in port, of the workers i find out on deck in the middle of the night painting, varnishing, repairing, and neatly stacking fresh deckchair towels in the bins, of the precise coordination with which they go about their tasks ... after that i realized that the word "crew" was most apt ... in in the military i worked like this, and, as a teacher, after the kids it was the best part of my career that a small group of teachers and i worked this way, so it's easy for me to say that if i had to work on a ship i would want it to be in an atmosphere such as these wonderful people create ...

... he'll slice the beef/turkey/pork/whatever any way that i want ...
    
    
... i doubt if it's humanely possible to fake such enjoyment ...
    
    
... wayan is one of the two stewards who daily care for me, "everything okay" seems to be his motto, call sign, and mantra ...
    
    

... heri is some kind of nija stealth steward ... i think there's a little secret door he hides behind twenty-four hours a day ... POP ... out of nowhere, there he is ... "do you need anything, mr. patrick ... how was your day ... is everything good" ... he leaves me extra chocolates and sets funny towel animals on my bed ... i enjoy him, and i've a good sense that should our roles be reversed i would do so just as much ('cept, of course, i've not a clue how to make an elephant out of two bath towels) ...
    
   
... i think prasetya was delivering to the posh-people deck (then again, i've a feeling that more'n a few residing alongside me in steerage might avail themselves of his services) ...
    
    
... i caught maria by surprise as she was cleaning the hot tub shower ...
    
    
... to work away the night with such a smile, wonderful ...
    
    
... the pool area bar person, he doesn't get much business from me ...
    
    
... i spent twenty minutes watching the ballet-like choreography an obviously well-trained team cleaning the wooden deck in the pool area ... in a second i'd hire them to work at my swimming pool ...
    
    
... crisel (?) and co-worker, obviously a team ...
    
    
... utami, which i think is derived from the indonesian word for "important/essential" ... then again, what do i know other'n she most delightfully takes care of me in the lido cafe ...
    
    
... i'm blanking on her name, but what i'll never forget is how she makes my meals absolutely the poshest of times ...
    
    
... one of the cafe managers, i believe ...
    
    
... a head chef, himself working the line to prepare some fish ...
    
    
... anthony helps tend the bar at the back stern of the ship ...
    
    
... middle of the night, taking care of a tiny little spot in the carpet ...
    
    
... roy is a most charming maitre'd (from the french "maitre de hotel") ...
    
    
... for me, her giggle is a kind of dessert topping ...
    
    
... trixie, i think, is just a tiny bit shy ...
    
    
... per your desires darwin serves up a perfect salad ...
    
    
... one of the middle-of-the-night crew lining up the chairs—lining them up with geometric precision, i might add ...
    
    
... i'm going to have to run into him again to get his name, but i'll not forget the moment he took from his work to give a quick smile for my camera ...
    

... adji is a housekeeping supervisor, but after watching him manage his deck crew i knew i'd be comfortable if he was the captain (which i thought he was) ...
    
    
... okay, a couple dozen down, only 600+ to go ... now, all i've got to do is figure a way to sneak into the "you can't go here" places ...
    
... i've seen places before, i've been eating food all my life, hot tubs and fresh made beds and good service are not new experiences for me ... the concern and charm with which all of these wonderful people are taking care of me, however, that is something of which i will always consider among my life's many fabulous experiences ...