Excited starting off in a new industry and flying out to Halifax in Nova Scotia to join the Pacific Shore. Base port was Mulgrave but the ship was at sea so sailed as passenger on another ship, transferred by helicopter from one oil rig to another and duel arrived on the Pacific Shore on 08-07-1970.
This was all rather exciting and one of my first jobs was to slice an eye in a broken tow wire which was just as well as a few days later we were involved in towing a Canadian war ship of a sand bank and later receiving salvage money.
The Captain and Mate were not early risers and when out at the rig on standby the ship would anchor when not alongside the rig. It was a requirement to inspect all the anchor buoys first thing in the morning so I was designated by the Captain to call the C/Eng then heave up the anchor, check the buoys then return to anchor before he bothered to show up on the bridge.
Based in Mulgrave on the Canso Strait between Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island is was all quite enjoyable and so much different to being on large cargo ships. Nights ashore meant visits to the Canadian Legion amongst others. We would buy drinks for the old barman and when he was off guard we would turn back the hands on the clock to get an extra hour in the bar.
Buying moonshine, car getting skunked, men only bars and visits to Antigonish speedway are memories of Nova Scotia. Time passed quickly and I left the ship on 09-11-1970.
The next time I saw the Pacific Shore was three years later by which time I had passed my 2nd Mate’s Certificate and was sailing as Mate. The company needed a Mate quickly to man the Pacific Shore in Aberdeen on a Sunday morning. There were no flights as such from Norwich on a Sunday but they managed to get me on a ‘positioning’ flight on Sunday morning, I was the only passenger so joined the Pacific Shore on 30-12-1973.
The ship was preparing for a rig shift which I can only remember as being hard work as the Captain had broken an anchor pennant and it took us hours to clear it from the winch. Before that we had to bunker the tug that was towing the rig and pass over food supplies, all in bad weather. Can’t remember much else but left the ship on 31-01-1974.
Another visit to the Pacific Shore which was taken up the river Yare from Great Yarmouth to Norwich for layup and repairs along with the Nova Shore. I was given the job to look after the ships, partly because I lived locally and also because I was between homes and needed to be around to support my wife until we moved into the new house. So in the meantime the company kindly paid for me to live in a hotel and look after the ships. So I was signed on the Pacific Shore from 4-10-1977 to 4-11-1977. After leave I returned to my regular ship the Cromarty Shore.