The Ship and the Storm by Jim Carrier

By Jim Carrier

"Utterly compulsive and unputdownable--the most fun, real, and humanly relocating of the entire fresh typhoon books. Brilliantly paced and completely balanced. . . . provider is a marvelously reliable narrator. . . . an excellent book."--Jonathan Raban, writer of Passage to Juneau: A Sea and Its Meanings and undesirable Land: An American Romance "A marvelous tale. a really well-written account of the occasions as I knew them. I commend Jim service for an impressive job."--Jerry D. Jarrell, Director, nationwide typhoon heart In October 1998, the majestic schooner Fantome got here face-to-face with the most savage storms in Atlantic historical past. The final days of the Fantome are reconstructed in shiny and heartbreaking element via Jim Carrier's broad examine and 1000s of private interviews. What emerges is a narrative of braveness, hubris, the ache of command, the load of lives as opposed to wealth, and the advances of technological know-how as opposed to the bad energy and unpredictability of nature. (20001015)

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Windjammer encouraged each guest to tip $50, and in a good week with a full ship, the crew divide would be somewhere between $80 and $120 apiece. Thus, tips, which came not from company coffers but from passengers’ pockets, equaled or exceeded many base salaries. Chrispin, for example, earned more than $350 in tips per month on top of his $300 salary. “They lived for tips,” said Melody Filarey, a regular passenger who knew many of the crew. In sharp contrast to the officers, who were assembling marine résumés, and the white female crew, who often were enjoying career B E L I Z E : O C T O B E R 11—17 29 sabbaticals, the men and women of the Caribbean viewed the Fantome as a job that was better than anything they could find at home.

The thirty-four West Indian crewmembers aboard the Fantome, some of them physically imposing and deeply colored, disarmed American passengers with brilliant smiles, laconic deference, humor, and the good manners learned at home. Their mothers, whom most still called “Mommy,” had taught them to say “good morning” and “good afternoon” to people they met and to welcome guests into their homes. Almost all had been brought up as regular Sunday churchgoers, raising the roof with gospel music sung to the beat of a steel-drum band.

Guest feedback invariably praised the Fantome’s crew for making the trip memorable, and repeat Jammers routinely asked reservation clerks: “Who’s going to be on board? Is Brasso on this trip? ” Rarely did a guest forget a first conversation with Carl James, a slim engineer from Guyana. ” his standard comeback, delivered with a grin sparkling with one gold tooth and a Caribbean rhythm that made him 28 The Ship and the Storm sound like a West Indian James Bond, was, “Cool and deadly. ” Yet, in many respects, the Fantome mirrored the divide between the Third World and the First.

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