Looking for work?

Lately I have been getting a lot of emails and messages from soon to be maritime grads, and recent G.O.M. lay off victims, all looking for tips on where and how to find a job. So here are my top three tips on how to land that first, or second, or twenty-third job in the maritime industry.

Number Three:
Check your email regularly, including the spam folder. Always keep your phone on and on you, and always answer.

Number Two:
Keep all of your documents organized and in a folder for any potential interview. Also, and even more important, keep them all saved electronically as emailable PDF files.

Number One:
Endlessly emailing companies is a waste of time, and honestly, for the lazy. Pick up the phone and start dialing. Get anyone at in the office on the phone that you can! Be polite, and if you aren’t talking to the right person, ask nicely if you can be directed to the right person! Just get on the PHONE! If I didn’t make it clear enough, here is Leonardo Dicaprio to help clarify.

If you are a newbie who wants to get into the industry, and don’t know where to start. Feel free to send me a message.

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Artsy Shots

Here a few shots from the last hitch that will be destined for my eventual coffee table book of tugboat “art”

Yes I know, the black and white is artsy cliche

All in a row

All in a row

Reflections

Reflections

Training Wheels

Training Wheels

Weatherbound

Weatherbound

The Old Man

The Old Man

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Buy my boat!

Safari is still for sale folks! I will be taking the winter cover off soon and cleaning her up for those interested in seeing her! Check out her page on here or look at a few of the photos below. Feel free to contact me at sailorbytrade@gmail.com with any questions!

boat girl, boat dog, and the waterman

boat girl, boat dog, and the waterman

moving along

moving along

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a little mood lighting

a little mood lighting

Hard to beat

Hard to beat

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Photos of the week 4-19-15

While waiting for a ship the other day I had some great light to take advantage of. I also had some great subject material, the Maersk Vallvik inbound the kills with the Charles D McAllister attending.

Charles D McAllister

Charles D McAllister

Charles D McAllister with the KV buoy in the four ground, and the narrows in the background

Charles D McAllister with the KV buoy in the four ground, and the narrows in the background

Charle D McAllister inbound the KVK with the Maersk Vallvik

Charle D McAllister inbound the KVK with the Maersk Vallvik

Maersk Line

Maersk Line

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Knee Deep

As I enter the homestretch of this hitch I can definitely say I’ve been knee deep in tugboats the whole time. Due to a shuffling of personal I ended up coming back early for a few extra days with the other crew. So after Sunday Easter dinner with my future Mother in Law (thanks for the great dinner Kathy!) the Therapist Fiancé and I relaxed at home for a few more hours in front of the fire. It never gets any easier leaving, especially when you are full of ham with a black lab on one side and a pretty lady on the other!
Once back to work my education by tugboat continued in earnest, and the semi permanent boat certainly knocked me down a few pegs when it got the chance. Its not that she’s a bad boat by any means, just a bit peculiar in its handling compared to everything else I’ve run. She has inboard turning wheels, therefore doesn’t twin-screw very well and is noticeably weaker astern than ahead. However she tows well and has good height of eye from the lower wheelhouse. Addition she will walk a barge quit well. So as with anything, each job is about planning to play to your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.

Along comes my best man on the Jay Michael

Along comes my best man on the Jay Michael

Sometimes however the weaknesses get ya, and you just have to try and not break anything while muttering “damn damn damn”. For the record though, on tugboats and boats in general, you are usually muttering something a little more profane. You are also usually yelling; but I digress.
The primary weakness at this point is still has more to do with my level of experience and skill, and less to do with any particular boats handling quirks. So not all of my jobs went great the first couple days. In particular I had a tough time, and continue to, doing ship work with that particular boat. With barges however it is a different story. While it wont twist a barge well, I do feel a lot more comfortable with a barge on the push or alongside and have put barges up to 60k barrels into a few docks as well and moved them point to point all over the harbor. We even took one 60k barrel unit up to Boston and back, giving me my first taste of real wire work. By far the highlight of the run to Boston was both transits of the Cape Cod Canal. For once I got to be on the other end of the lens, and be the guy on the tugboat! What made the moment even better was that on the shore with a camera was not only the Therapist Fiance, but also a large gathering of both our families. I can’t thank them all enough, especially my bride to be for coming down. I can only share so much of what I do through this blog and for them to get to actually see me at work was very very cool.

The crowd gathering

The crowd gathering

Tug and Fiance spotting by the Therapist Fiance

Tug and Fiance spotting by the Therapist Fiance

Our assist into Exxon Everett

Our assist into Exxon Everett

Once back to New York and released from the barge it was time for a maintenance period for that boat and the boat hoping of this hitch began for me. As a crew, minus our engineer who was busy doing engineer things, we moved over to one of the smaller less used boats for a smattering of barge and ship assist jobs. This only lasted two days before we stole a visiting boat from the Portland office to do the current job we are on.

Steaming for Baltimore

Steaming for Baltimore

Our assist into Baltimore, the former Leo, now Bridgett McAllister.

Our assist into Baltimore, the former Leo, now Bridgett McAllister.

That brings me to the last few days and the value of a good network of friends. See when you get called to move a random barge there is usually a myriad of questions about it that the dispatcher or office isn’t going to have the answers to. How are the bridles and the pick up line set up? How does it tow alongside? When and where do you generally tow it alongside during the trip? How does it tow loaded? What is the approach to the dock like? Do you take an assist in or out?
What you really need is to talk to someone who does the trip on a regular basis, and knows the barge. That’s where you’re network of maritime friends, former colleagues’, and people you might just kind of know from an airport bar come in.
So when our crew got told that another company needed one of their bulk barges brought from New York to Baltimore due to lack of their own boats being available, the above questions started piling up. That’s when the cell phones come out and everyone starts to scour through their contact list to see if so and so still works there, or if that guy you tied up to one time had done that run. Etc, Etc, So on and so fourth.
As luck would have it we did know “A guy” who had done this exact tow and whose boat normally did it. A couple phone conversations and we had the skinny on the whole trip, the particulars of the barge, and the methods for coming in and out of the slip. So now here we sit waiting on the barge to finish loading for the run back up to New York. All in all it’s been a good hitch, I’ve gotten to see some new places, do some new work, and experience a couple more boats.

Now for all the photos that didn’t quite work into the post, that I know are the real reason anyone visits this site anyway.

Sunrise on Long Island Sound

Sunrise on Long Island Sound

On the Wire

On the Wire

The Race

The Race

Favorite shot of the hitch

Favorite shot of the hitch

Boston Towboat hard at work

Boston Towboat hard at work

a classic boat

a classic boat

Charle D McAllister inbound the KVK with the Maersk Vallvik

Charle D McAllister inbound the KVK with the Maersk Vallvik

New York

New York

Marion Moran

Marion Moran

Tugboat "Art"

Tugboat “Art”

Eric McAllister at work

Eric McAllister at work

Sunset

Sunset

The Cargomaster on a short wire

The Cargomaster on a short wire

Justice helping us out of Exxon Everett

Justice helping us out of Exxon Everett

noise makers, boat shakers, white water and black smoke creators

noise makers, boat shakers, white water and black smoke creators

The Office

The Office

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Photo of the week 4-11-15

Steaming in the fog on cape cod bay

  

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Photos from the East End

Well this blogger is back in his usual haunts for a couple weeks of rest, relaxation, and catching up on the to do list at the house! I decided it was time to start a new regular blog post for my tug and vessel spotting at the Cape Cod Canal, in particular down at the east end. The furry child, Therapist Fiancé and myself have spend countless hours down by the canal, and its a favorite spot for us. So on that note on with the photos!

Two regulars to start, Independence & Lucy Reinauer

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Next is a favorite boat of mine, Barbara McAllister, escorted by the ever present Buckley

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One of Hydroid’s AUV deployment boats.

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Aegean Sea with a light scow, New Bedford bound

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One of the usual suspects

Is there someone behind me?

Is there someone behind me?

McKinley Sea & Buckley McAllister

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Scarlett Isabella

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Buckley McAllister headed back for the barn, Mass Maritime that is.

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Magothy with Double Skin 50 on the wire.

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