Saved from Starvation by the Border LairdHi

Dickyboy
21st May 2009, 09:01
Hi!
I did a couple of trips on the Nigerian Coast while working with BP.
What we called the "Lagos Okrika Run"
Backwards and forwards between the two ports, 18 hours apart, often with several days at anchor at either end.
At one time it was impossable to get stores in Lagos, what was available was inedible. At one point, for several days, our meals consisted of soup and sandwiches only. The only potatoes we had at one time were little packets of nibbles called "Chipsticks"
Anyway, one day we were at anchor off Okrika, when the Border Laird hove into view, and went alongside the berth. The Old Man (Still "Sir" to his face) called them up asking for stores, which they more than willingley supplied us with.
We put the two lifeboats down, went across to her and filled the first boat up with fresh veg, spuds and all the usual stores that we hadn't seen for weeks. The other lifeboat was filled with beer, we'd run out of that before the food of course. :o Barclays Sparkling Ale as recall, foul stuff, but just a bit better than nothing at all.
Good old Border Laird!

JamesM
21st May 2009, 10:13
Dickyboy
Reading your post brings back horrible memories of the Lagos - Okrika run. Did that on the Maple, 1972, for a couple of months. As you say, stores in Lagos were poor, if there were any at all, and there was zip in Okrika.( See my post under BP Culinary Triumphs #104, for an example of the sort of things that we were given.)
From an engineering point of view we also had big problems with fresh/distilled water as we could not get the Evap to work properly due to us being in coastal waters most of the time and the shore supply was of questionable quality.
When we eventually got orders for Durban it was like we'd been let out of jail!
Regards, James.
PS Mus'nt forget, "Well done the Border Laird"(Applause)

Dickyboy
21st May 2009, 11:30
Hiya James
It was a strange run wasn't it. There were some good times on it as well. We used to put a lifeboat down while anchored at either end and either visit other BP or Brit ships that might be at anchor, swap books, movies etc and perhaps get a few stores. At the Okrika end, if we anchored, we sometimes went for little cruises around the islands, visit a villiage or walk up the pipeline to a local school and play football with the kids.
We used to meet two smaller ships in Okrika, The Madison, a yank rig tender, and a Danish coaster called the Lisbet Turkol. They had local crews, but the senior crew were either Yank or Danish. They used to come aboard for drinks when we met on the jetty.
I was on the Titty Boats or the River Boats on that run.
I must dig out my newer Discharge Book and see what ships I was on at that time.

PS One ship that I was on that run with was the British Trent. I joined her in Purfleet on 13/12/74 (Another Crimbo messed up!) and Payed off her in Lagos on 18/06/75.

derekhore
21st May 2009, 16:51
Must have just missed you Dickyboy.....

I joined the Trent in Little Aden on 25/7/75, we did a couple of Bahrain-Lagos runs then came back to Europe (Amsterdam d/d) following a collision alongside at Bandar Mahshahr involving the Texaco Liverpool.

twogrumpy
22nd May 2009, 10:11
Much as most people hated the Lagos Okrika run, including me, the comment has been made previously that it kept a number of us in work for a few years.
Not sure that I agree, but it is a resaonable arguement.
(Cloud)

Dickyboy
22nd May 2009, 12:57
Must have just missed you Dickyboy.....

I joined the Trent in Little Aden on 25/7/75, we did a couple of Bahrain-Lagos runs then came back to Europe (Amsterdam d/d) following a collision alongside at Bandar Mahshahr involving the Texaco Liverpool.

Shame you didn't just miss the Texaco Liverpool :o Who came off worse?
As I recall there was allready a wrecked tanker at Bandar Masshahr wasn't there?

Dickyboy
22nd May 2009, 13:12
Much as most people hated the Lagos Okrika run, including me, the comment has been made previously that it kept a number of us in work for a few years.
Not sure that I agree, but it is a resaonable arguement.
(Cloud)

I didn't really hate that run, and as you say it was work. It seemed to me though that at Okrika we were forever stopping working cargo. Thunder storms every twenty minutes or so more than doubled the loading time.
I think the worst thing though was being bombarded by huge beetles at night. Attracted by the bright deck lights, they used to hit the fore end of the accomodation and drop onto ones head. The deck was covered in them in the morning. Ugh!
Berthing next to the slaughterhouse in Appapa wasn't much fun either.

derekhore
22nd May 2009, 17:56
Shame you didn't just miss the Texaco Liverpool :o Who came off worse?
As I recall there was allready a wrecked tanker at Bandar Masshahr wasn't there?

We came off worse!

She was swinging off the berth, went astern....didn't stop and sat on our maindeck!!

It's all here:

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=20786

Dickyboy
24th May 2009, 16:14
I read the link. Ohh 'ek! Potty Time methinks.

Dickyboy
24th May 2009, 16:24
I joined the Security in Amsterdam Dry Dock (ADM) As Storekeeper. A couple of weeks of busy days and even busier nights ;o) There was only a few on there The Captain, Mate, C/E C/Steward and myself as I recall. That was in March 71