Women on ships…


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Yes, I’m back in Athens now after my summer of fun…ready to face a new round of challenges.

To round the trip off nicely, yesterday (30AUG) the ship arrived back in Athens as well!  I had been staying in regular email contact with the Chief Officer, (remember my avuncular figure who looked after me?) and we arranged to meet in Athens.

Chief with me in Athens
Chief with me in Athens

Stepping off the Metro in Piraeus, there he was, waiting for me amongst the crowds, looking a little lost (well, when you’ve spent days at sea and then are faced with mass crowds ashore, I thing you would too).

When do you have to be back to the ship?

“Oh, not until 8pm.  I trust you – you are my guide today.  And you are my niece so I will pay”
(Ha!  Maybe I should take him shopping then?)

And so we headed back into the centre…it’s only about 25 mins by Metro from Piraeus to the Acropolis.

Chief Officer enjoying his frappe
Chief Officer enjoying his frappe

I introduced him to Cafe Freddo, we wandered around the foot of the Acropolis, we sat (at the Chief’s request), at another cafe for another Freddo (iced coffee) and a Mojito (for Chief too!), wandered some more and then rounded off the day with some souvlaki in a traditional Greek place (not frequented by tourists) before he headed off into the sunset back to the MV Hanjin Boston.

It was lovely to see him again – and I know we’ll be staying in touch…I’ve already half jokingly told him if they need a Secretary on the ship for all the massive amounts of paperwork the Captain and Chief has to do, I’m their woman.  He has semi-seriously said he’ll discuss the matter and see who he and the Captain need to talk to.

Interestingly, he says that to have a couple of women on board the ship – whether Captain’s wife or girlfriend of a crew member, or passenger – really balances the ship’s atmosphere nicely…it makes it a ‘softer’ environment to work in.  So you see?  It doesn’t have to be a negative to have a female on board.


  1. Hi Rebecca – If you can you should find out about going port to port on a cargo ship! I used to work for a large Canadian shipping company and would often go see a ship load and would visit with the captain and crew. And I would often wonder what it must be like crossing the Atlantic in one of those things. It used to be pretty easy for shipping companies to take regular people onboard but as you mention there is a lot of paperwork involved now. But if you can work your connections you should go for it!
    Frank (bbqboy)

  2. Thanks Frank! If you look through my Adventure Travel section and Overland to Hong Kong, you’ll see I actually spent 37 days this summer on board a container ship from Athens to Hong Kong. Look through all my past posts – you’ll see the ship going through Suez, lots of interesting posts to keep you interested.

    Thanks for the follow.