St. Patrick’s Day

My second shift tonight was pretty nice. Smaller boat, smaller crew, St. Patrick’s Day celebration! I had a hearty meal of corned beef, potatoes, salad, and carrots up in the pilot house. There was considerable activity at the Port of Oakland, giant container ships attended by beautiful white cranes, pulling containers on and off the waiting ships one after another: zip, zip, zip, zip! I saw one ship with a bunch of Hanjin containers, and I was thinking “Hanjin, Hanjin … Han Chin? Han Chinese?”

I got into a discussion with one of the guests who was also standing at the stern, watching the port. Those ships are from the other side of the Pacific! Those containers are International trade – goods, which employ people. Containers of hope floating across the ocean of a troubled world.

Jessica lost her retail job today. While she was dismissed for performance reasons, I suggested that he may have been looking for a pretext to cut staff without resorting to layoffs, on account of Unemployment Insurance premiums being based on claims made against an employer. I hope she’ll be okay.

It was a laid-back, middle-aged crowd who ate well and drank well and danced only a little. At the end of the night the tips were split four ways among the service staff. $22 in my pocket sure feels good.

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