Finished RP training at Dryad in 1980. Got a 2 week loan draft to the Cardiff for the sole purpose of a JMC. Sailed from Rosyth spent 2 weeks in defence watches sat at the 965 display in the ops room turning my anti flash gloves green with bile.
Finally got my sea legs on the next loan draft a ton class sweeper.
Caen to Portsmouth (Brittany Ferry several years ago). The month of November as I recall.
What a wild ride that was. The tourists were honking upall over the place. The nights entertainment (some kind of pop group), tried to get their gig in but experienced an Epic Fail when a mahoosive incoming sea swell tilted the ferry rather alarmingly and everything (drum kits,microphones, keyboards, guitars and musicians shot off the stage and caroomed through the die hard drinkers and those who didn't have a cabin for the night. Most passageways had been plastered in a tsunami of spew and I could actually hear people screamin' from behind their cabin doors. The shitters all backed up and you had to brown water raft into them if you needed a dump........forget to lock the door and it all rolled over the step to mingle with the streams of vomit. Automatic sliding doors threw wappers and wouldn't open properly and I know of at least one elderly lady who went through one when it unexpectedly returned to the closed position, fortunately with no serious injury. Cafes and serve-yourself restaurants valiantly attempted to remain open. I opted for a chicken curry with rice, ate some, wore the rest. The custard rose out of its heated storage like yellow molten lava and deposited itself in the gravy, bits of chicken and roast 'tatties rolling all over the deck, so I had jam roly-poly (negative custard) for duff. WolfPackLeader had welded herself to the bed, listening in dread to something big'n'heavy clanging against metal (I think it may have been an anchor). Big electric one armed bandits took on a life of their own and went for a womble along vomit spattered walkways and water was pissing through the deck head of the bar I had my last pint in before the staff gave the f*ck up and closed it. There were a few brave souls up forward on the "viewing deck" watching about a million tons of sea water heading their way trying repeatedly to smash all the windows and drown 'em were they stood. After my potter around the ferry, I went back to our cabin, consoled WolfPackLeader who moaned all bloody night and not in a good way. We had bunks so I was up top. Slept like a narcoleptic. Sea sickness fortunately avoided me on that trip, but the actual thought that this thing was going to do a one-eighty sideways and sink was always on my mind.
I can honestly say that it was the roughest sea passage I have ever experienced, and I have no desire to ever experience it again.
Sailing back from Brest on a Nicholson 55 bound for Gosport, we cleared the Chanel Du Four and entered quite a lively sea (not roughers). A rather nice Wren announced that she was feeling a bit queasy. The Skipper of the yacht (whom I did not get on with) - arrogant tw*t, advised her to get down below and have a lie down. Unfortunately for the Skipper, he was downwind of her when the inevitable happened and she boffed all over his face! I very nearly felt sorry for him! Anyway, the green faced girl refused to leave the deck and fresh air and after about ten minutes, renewed her earlier statement that she was feeling dodgy. I could not believe my luck when the Skipper once again stood downwind of her, telling her once more to hop it below. Yes she gave him another dose of spew, much to my delight. Thank you very much Helen, you made me very happy.
Billy's dit, March 23rd, reminded me of the one and only time that I was seasick during my 7 year RN and 5 year Merch sea-going days. However, it had nothing to do with either of those organisations. It was the very early 1970's and I was a killick greenie. I drove from Guzz to Weymouth, parked up the car and jumped on the British Rail ferry for a weekend, staying with an oppo and his wife in St Helier, Jersey. On the final afternoon we went to Jersey Rugby Club and watched a couple of local teams. We retired to the bar and I was drinking a brand of lager that I'd never seen or heard of before (or since) called 'Blue' something or other. I got absolutely shiters. The following morning my oppo gave me a shake where I'd crashed on his sofa and he took me to the ferry. I could still hardly stand and I felt bloody awful. Worse was to come after we got out of the harbour. There was a hooligan blowing and you can guess the rest. I tried to get my head down on a bench on the quarterdeck. I don't remember seeing anyone else during the 8 hour crossing as the rest of the sensible passengers had battened down inside the ferry. I spewed and puked until finally I was retching with nothing left to eject. I've got to say it was about the most intense bout of illness that I've ever endured.. I was never so happy to set foot on terra firma again. How the hell I drove back to Guzz I don't know. Must have been crazy. Happy days?