CRUISE – The Dublin Drill

13 May

In the morning the whole “team” attends to costumers in the photo gallery, because we won’t arrive in the port of Dublin before noon. Most of the passengers sleep in, preparing for a long night in Ireland, leaving the photographers to silently stare at each other for three hours. (Recall that management forbids us to talk to each other when even a hint of costumer is around.) But that is not to say ABC Cruises would do anything to increase our moods. Au contraire – our masters found a sure way to escalate the situation.

Every cruise that we embark on has to feature one drill, a day on which we all wait patiently for a crew alert to be announced, so that we can walk to our safety positions and pretend that we are in control of ourselves, and of the evacuation procedures. Drills can only be held in port, and no crew member is allowed to leave the ship before the drill has ended. And considering that we will only be in Dublin once during these five months of North Sea cruises our masters agreed that today should be the day of drilling. And that said drill should not occur until two hours after arriving in port, thus maximising frustration, because most crew will have to go back to work by the time the drill is done.

Breakwater of the port of Dublin, Ireland

The big port of Dublin is a beautiful sight, even if you don’t get to see the city.

So we arrived in Ireland’s iconic capital, and get to see its port through the windows of the ship. And once happiness about the view has spread across all decks we are allowed to resume our work of begging and shooting. Obviously we mostly photograph an empty canvas, because who in their right mind would stay aboard, if they have the opportunity to visit Dublin?!

As usual our work day ends around half past midnight, culminating in yet another tirade from the photo manager; another scenic depiction of his rotting leadership skills and lacking talents in communication. Starting today he will collect formal notes of complaint, and file them away for us. The reasons for starting his collection of terrible handwriting remain unknown, but apparently they have something to do with the other departments complaining to him about the members of the photo department. Bolek was awarded the very first of those notes, and got to sign it in front of everyone. Apparently he has failed to punch his time card according to schedule, a crime for which prosecution is immanent. I almost feel left out, but the photo manager quickly produced another complaint notification, and it is mine!

Old and new industry at Dublin, Ireland

Dublin is filled with indutry, and the mixture of generations is part of its charm.

My first personal complaint letter charges me with two crimes against humanity. Both are quite personal, yet none names an accusing party. The first charge concerns my “groom”, an issue raised most recently by the captain himself. Manager Mihai sends me to the manager of human resources (HR), first thing tomorrow morning, to discuss my general attitude towards the company’s groom policy. Maybe HR will “make [me] understand” what Mihai has been preaching and complaining about for the past two weeks.

The second complaint against my person regards my “unwillingness to help other members of the team”. While it is no big secret that I am a loner, and unwilling to socialise with a bunch of smoking, drinking knitwits, it should also be known that I am generally eager to help and assist. However, that eagerness is cut short by the inability of my “team members” to act in a way that represents coordination, or at least communicate their demands in an internationally comprehensible form.

In other words – my coworkers are incapable of telling me what to do, and yet they complain about me not doing what they want. Now there is a formal record of these baseless accusations against my person. If I can manage to accumulate enough of them I might manage to get fired, and leave this lousy excuse of a work place behind.

So there we have it – two weeks on the job, and I am ready to leave. Shitty food, crappy management, lousy work schedule, uncommunicative team. Welcome to ABC Cruises!

 

PS.: Regardless of the pressure I managed to shoot some nice pictures of Dublin’s port. Click here to view the photos.

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