Day 53

9th December 2001

Over the past weeks I’ve almost been willing a storm. In true British fashion I’m never happy with the weather. When it’s calm we fish relentlessly, day in, day out around the clock, so the work becomes a monotonous daily grind. When it’s very rough we can’t fish and I complain about getting bored through a lack of work. I accept I’m not an easy customer to please when it comes to the weather, but a fish free day would be a rare treat, and the drama of a storm would make a welcome change.

Today I learned that you have to be careful what you wish for.

This is an example of a weather fax, in reality ours were a much lower resolution, often with half the map missing or illegible.

I was on the radio tonight when I noticed the Mate and Captain at the chart desk, studying a silvery piece of paper which is the weather fax. I knew it meant that weather was forecast and they were deciding whether to run for it or stick it out. When I got off the radio I joined them at the chart desk and looked at the weather map. A tight knot of barometric isobars showed the low pressure system moving in, like a sliced onion rolling across the Atlantic. They decided to sit it out; it’s going to get bumpy!

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