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Friday, January 08, 2010

Action Cooking

Nicola Paris
Galley, Steve Irwin

Thurdsay 7th January

In preparation for action days we are baking lots of bread and snacks… chocolate mint cake, carrot cake, muesli bars, sweet bread and all manner of treaties and snack food that people can graze on when we are engaged in confrontation with the fleet.  It also means the galley crew can head up on deck to participate in the actions, knowing we have stuff already prepared.

Things seem to go wrong in the galley when you least expect it… its more rare to have huge accidents when the weather is really bad, because we are ready for it. The worst seems to happen when we are in relatively good weather and then an unexpected roll happens and you lose a bunch of food on the floor.

I’ve always been thankful it hasn’t happened to me before, and in Laura’s many years of cooking on board she hasn’t lost an entire meal just minutes before serving. Well, there are firsts for everything in life.

Just before dinner we had a bit of a roll, Laura was pushed towards the oven, then as the roll went back in the opposite direction the oven flipped open and all three huge trays of shepherds pie literally flew out at poor Laura’s head…narrowly missing knocking her out or blinding her… then onto the ground.  No one wants to be knocked out and killed by a flying shepherd’s pie… it just doesn’t sound nearly as hard core as having your ship rammed by the Shonan Maru.

This happened at 17:55. We serve at 18:00.  After salvaging what we could that landed in the trays the right side up, a bit of ingenuity, pissing ourselves laughing, and adding some leftovers we served at 18:15. Pretty darned good, frankly.

Friday 8th January

Life goes on, even amidst the international media frenzy enveloping the ship at the moment. The Captain remains firmly affixed to the satellite phone on the bridge fielding media calls from across the world.

Laura showed some of our deckies how to make bread today. The lads looked very fetching in their aprons and actually did a half decent job…. Everyone got to try their various bread inventions at dinner with a warming stew.

Our other cook, Vera, is in charge of Sea Shepherd’s Hungarian operations and speaks multiple languages - she has also been flat out doing interviews, so Laura and I were in the galley by ourselves today.

Today the newest addition to our fleet, the Ady Gil, lies on the bottom of the Southern Ocean. It was put there by the whaling fleet in an unprecedented and unprovoked attack.  It remained afloat for some time but finally sunk while being towed as our other ship, Bob Barker, tried to salvage it.  We all just finally got an opportunity to watch the footage that the rest of the world has probably seen by now.  Absolutely distressing to see another much bigger ship headed towards your friends on board a vulnerable ship that is still in the water.  The footage is clear; they were aiming to sink that ship and murder our crew. There can be no doubt about it.  And they call us extremists!

We are out here risking our lives to protect the whales the Australian government and others can’t be bothered to.  If the government’s don’t care about whales, can they at least let us get on with the job they should be doing… and pretend to care enough about humans by stepping up to stop the insanity of the whaling fleet before they kill one of us?