Working and living in such close quarters, it is natural for yacht crew to become a close-knit group. Being a greenie can be difficult at first but after a few of these friendly pranks, the ice breaks and bonds grow. From rights of passage, yacht rituals to ocean crossing initiations, each yacht has a different take on making new crew feel like part of the family.
Sticking flip-flops to the yachts welcome mat with superglue is a classic welcome for newbies. Entertaining for onlookers – not so much for the person that goes head over flip-flops in front of everyone else.
For all those deckies out there, be sure to play the ‘calibrate the radar’ joke on your newbies, dress him/her up in tin foil and make them stand at the front of the boat – preferably on a dock with people watching them, whilst waving an tin foil covered broom around.
With the first seaman’s flight ticket that is issued to a new crewmember, inform them that they must wear full charter uniform or they cannot fly and the seaman’s ticket becomes invalid.
A long stand
A classic errand for new crew is to send them into the chandlery for a ‘long stand’, after being told to just wait there until the chandlery gets bored, they will be sent on their way feeling extremely silly.
Ocean dress up
Ocean crossing initiations usually come in the form of dressing up in ridiculous outfits for a certain amount of miles, with equally ridiculous ‘tasks’ to be carried out, whilst donning the outfit in question.
Asking a newbie to go and find the skyhooks in the store to hang the stewardess’ new mirror, all well and good until they realise that skyhooks don’t actually exist.
Asking a new crewmember to go and get a ‘fallopian tube’ out of the parts store for the next job to help out the engineer.
Those are just a sample of some of the fun to be had aboard for the initiation of crew into the “Yachtie” world. When times get tough and the charters are non-stop and hours are long, it is nice to be part of an industry that can let its hair down. Good luck !