Monday, May 6, 2013

Rescue at Sea!

GPS Screen
Tender being lowered
Sailboat in distress...
First Officer Steven...pretty cute! 
Having dinner in the main dining room, I noticed a dramatic change in light. Looking around, the water was still blue and calm. Nothing notable, or of mention! We then attended a show and later had a drink, upon the show’s competition! We could hear drilling and banging sounds, during the show and the comedian made mention of it. “Let the whale in,” he commented! 

Several wide screen TV’s hung above the bar and hubby noticed, that the once steady arrow representing the ship, pointing northeast toward Portugal, was now pointing south. “That’s odd”, he said. We were still clueless, as to the events about to unfold!
While in the ladies room, the Captain made a very important announcement, he had a very stern voice. Good timing! “Holy Crap,” I thought to myself, remembering the odd sounds, I had heard earlier in the evening. Were we in trouble???

“We are heading south to rescue two French citizens who are stranded at sea. They are one hour south of here and this rescue will not disturb our arrival time to the Azores.” We were approximately 1400 miles out to sea, with another 1500 miles to go before land. I literally ran to our cabin and grabbed my camera!

By the time I made it up to the observation deck the rumors were flying! This is what happens when you live, even temporarily, in a small close knit community! Trust me!
They could be terrorists, Somalian Pirates, or pirates in general, people were saying! “Captain Jack Sparrow, would be nice,” I thought, chuckling! Someone mentioned that the ship’s rescue crew would probably be armed! A bit of fear entered my being, as this is 2013, after all. It somehow rang, a bit of reality. I am sure the security was tight and strict protocol was followed!

After running from deck to deck, I managed a few photos, the quality not so good but you get the idea! There were many who had the same inclination, and the cameras, they were a flashing! I fooled around with my ISO in manual mode, with no flash, I was not very successful. Ultimately I had to use photoshop to bring the photos to light.
Seasoned passengers were commenting, on how they had never seen anything like this before. Neither had we.

Wow, this was very exciting and to watch the rescue unfold was truly amazing! We had only seen two ships since we left port on Tuesday, that was five days earlier. The crew lowered and launched the tender, off they went. The guesstimate for the sail boat was 40ft. They had been adrift for for 4 days and at sea for 10. A broken rudder was the unconfirmed cause. (Remember the rumor mill?) I truly hope they have good insurance, as the boat sustained a hole on it’s side from the rescue efforts. We got this information from First Officer, Steven, who was aboard the rescue tender. There was no way for Holland America to tow the vessel! It was left adrift and will probably sink at sea. Some say it’s worth was $250,000.00 or more. Not sure if this event made international news, as the satellite is down and no CNN or FOX news available.

I spoke to one of the crew this morning, he said the two French sailors were fine and bunking in with the crew. God only knows, there is enough food onboard to feed them. They were able to salvage some of their belongings and most importantly their lives. They speak only a little English! He further commented, that they acted like it was no big deal! MEN!!! They will most likely disembark in the Azores.

Congratulations, Holland America for the professional job and rescue. We are forever grateful and most impressed! THANK YOU! A large round of applause, echoed throughout, when the castaways came aboard safely.

Lessons learned: We will never, ever cross the Atlantic or any other ocean in anything smaller than a very LARGE cruise ship! HONEST! It is much better to be the rescuer than the one being rescued! AMEN!

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9 comments:

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

Whoa! You are really on a real life adventure!

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

Wow, that was some unexpected excitement on your cruise! Glad your ship was able to rescue those guys.

TexWisGirl said...

i cannot imagine the feeling of utter helplessness out there in the atlantic! not for me!!!

Debbie said...

how exciting to be a part of this!! poor sail boat...

first officer steven, yum!!

Nancy said...

Sounds like you had a little excitement among all the luxury you have been experiencing....

I am having so much fun living through you on this trip....Looking forward to all those wonderful photographs of foreign lands and adventures....

She Who Carries Camera said...

What excitement to start your adventures off with!

Deanna said...

Wow, you truly are on an adventure to remember!! Thanks for sharing the daring rescue with us!!

MarmePurl said...

What an adventure. happy to know of a good outcome for all and that the well being of others took precedence.

hootnonny said...

Exciting. Wouldn't mind is First Officer Steven saved me!

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