Sunday, June 19, 2011

A day on the BV

According to the foreman, I am "totally done on the WL." Basically that means all the rest of my coast guard training hours will be on the new boat, the BV. I spent two days out there this week. It's so lovely. All day you can hear the osprey calling, the songbirds, roosters, see fish jumping and the trees swaying in the breeze. I love it.

My day yesterday was pretty choice, so I'll just describe it all:
I got to work a bit before 8, and the foreman immediately had the other trainee and I head up to the WL. Evidently there was a snag bobbing just upstream from the boat and the morning operator was worried about it hitting the boat or the underwater cable.
So at 8:15 on a sunny morning, I was sitting in a motorboat in the middle of the river.

My coworker motored us over to the snag, and I gave it a shove. Sure enough, it wasn't lodged in the bank much at all, and could break away. I laid on my stomach hanging out and over the bow, and tied a rope around the snag. Once we hit the gas, we dislodged the snag, and dragged it downstream. The snag, which was probably 30 ft long and had lots of long branches, got caught in the underwater cable, the low water line. We had to maneuver it around the cable, but then, once past the cable, we just cut the rope and let it go. It was a pretty awesome way to start a day.
 Back at work, the foreman told us we'd be spending the day down at the new BV, puttering around, finding homes for things, installing non-slip pads, hanging signs, that sort of thing. It was great. We were down there by 11, and I hung about 20 signs, found homes for things like the first aid kit, the spill kit, and spare rolls of toilet paper. It was sunny. I was on the river. Nobody was bugging me. It was lovely, and I got a bit of a farmer's tan. Here's where I sat and ate lunch:

There were some guys hanging out on the bank, waiting for their friends in a boat to come get them. That was a fun bit of flirting. When their friends came, we looked the other way and let their boat pull up to the ferry, and the guys on shore walked across to the river end of the ferry and climbed into their friends boat.

At least 20 cars pulled up over the course of the afternoon, wanting to see if we were open. So here's the latest: the ferry is having a grand opening celebration on july 6th. We're hoping we'll be open for passengers before then, maybe around the 28th. That way we can work out all the kinks.

I also talked to my boss about my schedule. Since he's 100% certain that I will be on the BV (yay!), it comes down to the schedule. For now at least, we're assuming that one person will have a 4 day work week, with a ton of overtime (it's a 13 hr day) and a 3 day weekend, or a 3 day work week (with enough overtime pay to pay like a 44ish hour work week) and a 4 day weekend every single week. That's what I want. 3 days of work followed by 4 days at home. Can life get much better than that? Especially for the summer. It's possible that, in a few months, once the hullabaloo over the new boat dies down, we'll cut back to only operating 10 hours a day. At that point, I'd switch to a 4 day work week. Pretty damn awesome options, if you ask me! I think I can live with this awhile. Yeah, I'm looking for jobs, but there aren't a ton to apply for. I'm pretty excited about the new boat, getting my license and working solo, so it's not the end of the world if I do this for awhile.

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