Rolled up to class a little over two weeks ago ready to take on the yachting industry and soak up ALL OF THE KNOWLEDGE.
My first week started off with interior operations. The first 3 days consisted of learning the boat terminology, knowing what types of cleaning products to use on certain fabrics and surfaces, and my favorite, laundry and ironing! For those of you who don't know me, I haven't had much experience on the laundry front. Living in NYC, especially in a 5th floor walkup, doing laundry was just not a possibility, so we always used a pick up drop off service and it was AMAZEBALLS. I also never ironed because we had an awesome standing floor steamer so I had no need for an iron. But just wait, I'm going to be a pro at doing laundry and ironing. Another task for superyacht stewardesses is heads and beds. Heads = bathrooms, beds = bedrooms/cabins. There's a process called turnups and turndowns which is just making beds and setting them up for the guests to sleep in. This doesn't just involve putting sheets, blankets and pillows on a bed, For the sake of time, I won't get into detail. My next class was table service, silver service and hygiene. So we practiced making table settings, folding napkins and serving guests. Here is a little sneak preview of my awesome napkin folding skills.
The last class of my first week was a wine and cocktail class. I was kind of disappointed that we didn't actually get to make any cocktails but we did go to the wine store after and did a little tasting there.
My second week was basic safety training. It was a lot more hands on than the previous week and it was intense! The first two days covered personal survival techniques, so you know, if the boat goes down, you're going to need to know how to survive as long as possible. It involved a day and a half of classroom work, and then half a day at the pool. We had to tread water for 2 minutes, practice swimming and dragging someone while in lifejackets. Then, we had to put on immersion suits, which keeps your body almost room temperature in 32 degree water for around 6 hours (from what I remember from class). I was lucky enough to get stuck with the unisex "one size fits all" suit that was probably a foot too long on me and 10 sizes too big (see photo below). So we had to climb up a diving board and jump off, then climb up the back of a life raft to flip it up so people can start piling in. The worst parts were trying to climb into the raft and then getting out of the raft and out of the water.
The next class was first aid and CPR. not much to say there except this:
The final class was firefighting and let me tell you, I never want to do that again. I have no idea how people fight fires for a living, especially in hot, humid environments like Florida. It must have been 100 degrees that day and the sun was beaming hard. We had to go through a few drills, one was search and rescue, so we had to crawl into a really smokey dark room and search for a "victim". Then we had to actually fight a fire, so we each had a turn to battle the blaze with the hose. It's a lot more powerful than you think. NO JOKE! To finish off the day, we had to carry a hose up a few flights of stairs and practice using fire extinguishers. By the end of it all, we were all dripping sweat and smelled like hockey players. Actually, we were dripping sweat the second we stepped outside and put the gear on.
When I was about halfway done with my classes, I was informed that I had to take 2 more classes. WOMP! I will be doing another post in a day or two about my first job in the Bahamas! Woo!