Bank Line Shore Excursions....

Alistair Macnab
3rd June 2010, 18:44
I note that some of the regulars are 'SNd out' and we are all searching for something new and interesting to say. What about telling about trips ashore when something unusual happened? What I have in mind are 'jolly jack ashore' stories when a group of shipmates got up to mischief or got into danger. I'll start with a night out to Bougis Street in Singapore.

Several of us were drinking at a table in the street very late in the evening but more likely early in the next morning. Adjacent at another table was a group of British soldiers in civies relaxing from their Malay Emergency duties. Both tables were boisterous and occasionally exchanged ribald comments about the others situation: e.g. national service dodgers, brown pants wearers etc.

When the Chinese waiter eventually approached the army guys with their bill, he was met with hostility and one of them got up and swung at the waiter who fell to the ground and hit his head on the kerb, knocking himself out.

Within a nanosecond, the street was filled with angry Chinese and the general tenor of the rising screams in Mandarin or whatever seemed to be "One dead Chinamen, ten dead Englishmen"! This included us!

I have never been in a street brawl before or since where there was so much ferocity. Chairs and tables were used as missiles and weapons. Curses and yells flew along with the punches.

The round eyes retreated to the end of the street then ran.

Next day we decided it was the best night out we'd ever had! Despite bruises and grazes, aching limbs and bloody knuckles, plans were immediately made for another excursion ashore. But not to Bougis Street where we had had a night of free beer courtesy of the British Army.

I even remember the regiment. It was the Royal Scots Fusiliers (RSF).

Alan Rawlinson
3rd June 2010, 19:30
How many of us ' enjoyed ' a day in port in New Orleans when the Mardi Gras was in full swing...?

Must have been a slip up by the Super, because we had a fabulous idle day on the Southbank way back in 1961. The streets were ankle deep in beer cans ( does this still happen?) and the bars, music, and atmosphere was great, with the icing on the cake being 2 UCLA college girls bent on a good time, latching on to yours truly and the 2/0 - one Mr Farringdon.

Couldn't buy this sort of experience.

Joe C
5th June 2010, 23:35
I can relate to both contributions in this thread.
We used to eat at the Chinese "restuarants" in Bougis St when on the Levern and the cabaret,at the midnight hour was the Military Police from all the services RAF,Army,Navy and the Americans rounding up their respective members,to a fair bit of ribbing from us!
When in Mombasa,probably on the Iris,where Alan used to look after our intellectual pursuits,we called at the Star in Kilindini Avenue,and were entertained to an evening of poetry and prose delivered by a young American student who had just signed off a schooner which had been carrying out some sort of survey.He was their Writer and happily plastered.He spent the night quoting verses from all the serious poets interspersed with nonsense rhymes and the odd bawdy one.
The only verse I remember started "Sparkle, sparkle little twink"and included the immortal line,"I'm not under the affluence of incahol although some thinkle peep I be"
( I did'nt try that last line on spellcheck!)

jimthehat
6th June 2010, 00:21
I can relate to both contributions in this thread.
We used to eat at the Chinese "restuarants" in Bougis St when on the Levern and the cabaret,at the midnight hour was the Military Police from all the services RAF,Army,Navy and the Americans rounding up their respective members,to a fair bit of ribbing from us!
When in Mombasa,probably on the Iris,where Alan used to look after our intellectual pursuits,we called at the Star in Kilindini Avenue,and were entertained to an evening of poetry and prose delivered by a young American student who had just signed off a schooner which had been carrying out some sort of survey.He was their Writer and happily plastered.He spent the night quoting verses from all the serious poets interspersed with nonsense rhymes and the odd bawdy one.
The only verse I remember started "Sparkle, sparkle little twink"and included the immortal line,"I'm not under the affluence of incahol although some thinkle peep I be"
( I did'nt try that last line on spellcheck!)

A evening of poetry and prose in the Star bar,never!the only poetry I ever saw was the sight and sound of chairs flying thru the air whenever a couple of white crew ships were in town ,whilst us young bank line gentlemen would take refuge in the toilet.

jimr

Joe C
7th June 2010, 09:45
A evening of poetry and prose in the Star bar,never!the only poetry I ever saw was the sight and sound of chairs flying thru the air whenever a couple of white crew ships were in town ,whilst us young bank line gentlemen would take refuge in the toilet.

jimr

And write your poetry on the back of the door?

RayL
9th June 2010, 17:11
Two excursions spring to mind. Firstly, going ashore ill-advisedly bare-chested at Ras Tanura from the Naess Sovereign - the locals clearly could scarcely believe the dazzling white apparition before them and might have wondered for an instant whether they were seeing an angel! Secondly, a few months later, joining a party from the Speybank that was going to walk from Djibouti harbour to the town - a distance of a mile or so. Never before had I experienced such a feeling of danger! Could there be a gunman in that house across the way who would as soon take a pot-shot at you as spit on the floor? No police would come investigating an incident in a place like that, one realised. It was a relief to get our shopping done and get back safely to the ship.

Joe C
12th June 2010, 13:01
How many of us ' enjoyed ' a day in port in New Orleans when the Mardi Gras was in full swing...?

Must have been a slip up by the Super, because we had a fabulous idle day on the Southbank way back in 1961. The streets were ankle deep in beer cans ( does this still happen?) and the bars, music, and atmosphere was great, with the icing on the cake being 2 UCLA college girls bent on a good time, latching on to yours truly and the 2/0 - one Mr Farringdon.

Couldn't buy this sort of experience.

Our Irisbank visit didn't coincide with Mardi Gras but I was fortunate to visit New Orleans in the 80s on a Ford Convention.They staged a "mini" Mardi Gras with all the floats,the parade and the grand dinner in a splendid old hotel,complete with cabaret.They even closed Bourbon Street.
The highlight for me was lunch in the top floor revolving restaurant in a river front building overlooking the warehouses and berths.I expect Alistair can remind me of it's name.Nostalgia with a capital "N"

Alan Rawlinson
12th June 2010, 17:33
Our Irisbank visit didn't coincide with Mardi Gras but I was fortunate to visit New Orleans in the 80s on a Ford Convention.They staged a "mini" Mardi Gras with all the floats,the parade and the grand dinner in a splendid old hotel,complete with cabaret.They even closed Bourbon Street.
The highlight for me was lunch in the top floor revolving restaurant in a river front building overlooking the warehouses and berths.I expect Alistair can remind me of it's name.Nostalgia with a capital "N"

Hi Joe,

Sounds good - I was back to New Orleans a few times also in a business suit, and enjoyed some great hospitality. Didn't get up in the revolting restaurant however... Did get entertained in Houston in the top floor ' oil mans ' restaurant - again, I expect Alistair would also know this one - full of Hollywood style Texans. Also went out to a local rodeo where there were no tourists - just locals - a truly memorable night with Texas hospitality ( beer and beans etc)

Took a drive down to Galveston where I had some great times in the Bankline, ( apart from loading sulphur and oil, that is) and lo and behold - the street I had such fond memories of had been roped off and turned into a tourist ' wild west ' street with swinging doors and hitchin rails etc... I was gutted!

John Dryden
12th June 2010, 17:57
Didn,t get much time off in Houston just had a walk ashore and bought a few pairs of Levi,s,
had a few tequilas in a bar and got chased all the way back to the dock by a Mexican wielding a knife.How was I to know she had a boyfriend?

rcraig
12th June 2010, 20:12
Who? The one with the knife? (Sorry)

Charlie Stitt
12th June 2010, 23:42
You see Ray,the one with the bowie knifie in pursuit of John, was the Mexican love of the lassie who John, after a couple,(or more ?),of tequilas, was convinced, no doubt about it, she was giving him the come on, had dived in there and had just begun measuring her inside leg, when Mexican Joe come back from the toilet.(Ouch) Yes, been there, done that. and yes your honour, I WOULD do it again.(==D)

John Dryden
13th June 2010, 00:31
That is about right Charlie.New Orleans wasn,t much better,no Mardi Gras but ended up in a posh cinema watching a porn movie in3D,nearly took my eye out!However did get to see a few jazz bands along the way and of course the art on Harmony Street Wharf to see a bit of culture courtesy of Bank Line.

Charlie Stitt
13th June 2010, 12:46
I was never really a big fan of the US Gulf Ports, been there many times, but can't say I remember anything really exciting. I remember Harmony street wharf gallery well, and also trying to get over active, highly intoxicated Engineers back to the ship before the State Troopers got their hands on them for stealing shop signs etc. On one occasion, cant remember which port, they got a road roller started, and brought it back to the wharf. I did like the ''Army and Navy'' surplus stores where we bought shirts ,khaki trousers, records, etc etc, '' that will be 12 dollars 35 cents, plus state tax, plus federal tax, plus, plus, plus.'' but still great value. It's OK for Alistair, he can still shop there.(Jester)

boatlarnie
12th July 2010, 15:09
I have been trying to remember all the bars I visited during my time in the Bank Line, 1957-1971. There was Isiahs and the Temple Bar in Calcutta, a night club in Colombo whose name escapes me; Mombasa boasted the Casablanca, Nelson and Star bars amongst others whilst Beira had the Moulin Rouge where one could and did get ripped off. Who remembers the Cinco Cent de Mayo in LM with the Central and New Texas bars whilst for somewhere more civilised (??) we had Smuggies at Durban and the Navigators Den in Cape Town. Further afield I also frequented Ma Gleesens in Auckland, only place to get a drink after 5 p.m., Boogie Street in Singapore, First and Last Bar in Yokohama and the MotoMachi at Kobe. Bet some of you guys can remember some more places where we spent our hard earned cash or should I say, p----d it up against the wall.
Now peacefully retired, I wonder what the guys at sea do nowadays for a bit of R & R??

Boatlarnie

jimthehat
12th July 2010, 21:56
memory is a bit dim ,but for starters,how about May Sullivans in BA down 25 de mayo

jim

China hand
13th July 2010, 19:20
Didn't we have this a few months ago? Deja vu?(Hippy)

boatlarnie
14th July 2010, 13:26
Didn't we have this a few months ago? Deja vu?(Hippy)

Maybe so China Hand, but thought I would rev people's memories up a bit, also mine as maybe more 'fun' places are mentioned. Anyone remember Fathers Moustache in Bourbon Street; used to meet some real nice chicks there who were always up for a party. Then of course there was wonderful OZ with those lovely girls who'd phone as soon as you berthed asking what time the party was. I seem to remember never getting ashore there, parties every night, work during the day and so it went on at each port. On the Laganbank we had been chartered to KLSN from Europe to South America; at the latter, the stevedores did a lot of broaching despite our best efforts so, whilst hatch cleaning, many bottles of various kinds of booze came to light. We then loaded for Aussie via Gulf ports, on way across Pacific, Les Steers and myself converted the smoke room into a bar area which was declared as such for the Aussie Customs. They had to leave it unsearched provided we sold beer by the can, spirits by the tot and fags by the packet. Around the Aussie coast we made a small fortune selling tots to the wharfies, highly illegal I know but thank goodness no accidents. This paid for many a party around the coast which we really enjoyed. Times like these are now long gone but the memories will linger with me for ever.

Bill Aitken
14th July 2010, 22:36
I seem to remember my kind ship mates trying to sell me off as a virgin in the Sunshine club Mombasa. I did look young back then. That's all I will say on that story. lol

John Dryden
14th July 2010, 22:46
The sparkie on the Gowanbank was a virgin when he signed on and 12 months later was still a virgin when we paid off!I think the closest he got to losing it was the day a priest took him for a drive to see the sights somewhere in Aussie and tried to put his hand up his shorts.

JoeQ
22nd July 2010, 13:10
Maybe so China Hand, but thought I would rev people's memories up a bit, also mine as maybe more 'fun' places are mentioned. Anyone remember Fathers Moustache in Bourbon Street; used to meet some real nice chicks there who were always up for a party. .

Wasn't the Fathers Moustache in Durban ... I won a bottle of yarpie champane in there one night ashore from the Hazelbank for dropping my trousers on stage to prove I had blue knickers on ...

Alistair Macnab
22nd July 2010, 16:18
Don't recall one in Durban as I never got off Point Road when pub crawling, but there certainly was an establishment of that name on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. It closed at 2 AM then it was off to the all-night 'club' further down Bourbon called Lucky Pierres where it was again daylight when emerging. Just in time to go home around the corner to St. Louis Street to wash and shave before going to work.
New Orleans was indeed a hard billet! It took quite a while to get out of the habit of "going up the road" every night! Especially when former shipmates were in town and one felt obliged to show them a good time! [That's my excuse, anyway!]

Joe C
22nd July 2010, 16:40
I seem to recollect a certain contributor to SN,no names,(initials A R,) who when partying in the G O H Colombo was invited in the traditional manner to"Sing sing or show......etc! He duly got up on a table and complied.I think we were thrown out.That was the same night we arrived back on board with a palm tree in a concrete pot which we had managed to get into the cab,somehow

Joe C
22nd July 2010, 16:48
The sparkie on the Gowanbank was a virgin when he signed on and 12 months later was still a virgin when we paid off!I think the closest he got to losing it was the day a priest took him for a drive to see the sights somewhere in Aussie and tried to put his hand up his shorts.

We went on a "Mish"sightseeing coach trip from Melbourne up the Dandenong mountains in the company of a bunch of stewards off the passenger ships,your last sentence reminded me.It was fun if a little tense for a first trip apprentice!

JoeQ
22nd July 2010, 17:47
Don't recall one in Durban as I never got off Point Road when pub crawling, but there certainly was an establishment of that name on Bourbon Street in New Orleans.

The Father's Moustache in Durban was a little further round on the South Esplanade about 2 doors along from the Cockney Pride, the Point Road was for later in the evening when the Pussy Cat club got going

iain48
22nd July 2010, 17:54
Wasn't the Fathers Moustache in Durban ... I won a bottle of yarpie champane in there one night ashore from the Hazelbank for dropping my trousers on stage to prove I had blue knickers on ...

There was a Fathers Moustache bar in Durban which had not quite the same edge as the New Orleans original. It was in one of the seafront hotels opened 1972/3 I think.

Alan Rawlinson
22nd July 2010, 20:15
I seem to recollect a certain contributor to SN,no names,(initials A R,) who when partying in the G O H Colombo was invited in the traditional manner to"Sing sing or show......etc! He duly got up on a table and complied.I think we were thrown out.That was the same night we arrived back on board with a palm tree in a concrete pot which we had managed to get into the cab,somehow

Joe,

I remember it well, ( well, sort of ) and was tempted to relay the story here before deciding it lowered the tone a bit. Seemed like a deal at the time, and still does Always hated kareoke!

Pocket*trout
22nd July 2010, 20:47
Fathers Moustache in Durban closed at the end of 1996.
http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=South+Beach%2C+Durban%2C+South+Africa

yarddog
24th July 2010, 10:08
fathers moustache, Playhouse. and of course the famous bankline pub, Smugglers. Point road. just outside where we docked. R25c for a lions ale, and R1 for a plate of steak and chips :). circa 68/71

boatlarnie
24th July 2010, 16:39
Don't recall one in Durban as I never got off Point Road when pub crawling, but there certainly was an establishment of that name on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. It closed at 2 AM then it was off to the all-night 'club' further down Bourbon called Lucky Pierres where it was again daylight when emerging. Just in time to go home around the corner to St. Louis Street to wash and shave before going to work.
New Orleans was indeed a hard billet! It took quite a while to get out of the habit of "going up the road" every night! Especially when former shipmates were in town and one felt obliged to show them a good time! [That's my excuse, anyway!]

Hi Alistair,
That's the one although for the life of me I cannot remember which ship I was on at the time. I seem to remember being taken to Lucky Pierre's by either you or Mike Ward, drinking Irish Whisky's until dawn. What was the name of the place which sold the drink called "Hurricane"; when you bought the drink you bought the glass as well??
Regards,
Boatlarnie

pete
24th July 2010, 18:44
AAh the wonderful Hurricane comes from a place called Pat O'Brians just off Bourbon Street. Downed a couple or three in my time in NOLA.............pete (Pint)

Joe C
25th July 2010, 18:44
Do you think I could go back and collect my free drink?

Billieboy
26th July 2010, 06:59
Do you think I could go back and collect my free drink?

There was a barber shop around the corner of the Mish, had many a kip in the chair whils the girls fixed my hair!

Joe C
26th July 2010, 15:52
Barbershop,now that could start a new thread!
What sort of hobbies and passtimes have we all become involved in in our later years?
Believe it or not mine is Barbershop (of the singing variety) Great fun if you don't take it too seriously.
I was dragged into the hobby,screaming.Pushed into it by my lovely wife,obviously trying to get rid of me for at least one night a week.
Little does she know how good the beer is after rehearsals!

Alan Rawlinson
26th July 2010, 19:39
Barbershop,now that could start a new thread!
What sort of hobbies and passtimes have we all become involved in in our later years?
Believe it or not mine is Barbershop (of the singing variety) Great fun if you don't take it too seriously.
I was dragged into the hobby,screaming.Pushed into it by my lovely wife,obviously trying to get rid of me for at least one night a week.
Little does she know how good the beer is after rehearsals!

Joe,

Have to tie it to the Bankline or the ' thought police ' will get you! Look what happened to the wood turners.

How about great singers from Bankline voyages. One Gerry Fallon springs to mind on the Irisbank - had a lovely voice... Can also recall the Baa Baa Baa song ( gentlemen farmers on a spree..... ? ) sung in chorus after lots of lubrication walking back through the noisy cicadas from Point Fortin Shell club on a balmy night.

There must be plenty of memories out there of singing, really good talented singers, and of course the boozy kind. Always sounded better after a ' session ' though!
Cheers

simomatra
26th July 2010, 23:48
I still have my Hurricane glass after all these years. They were great times in Pat O'Brien.

Can also remember cashing in a few of those glasses to fund our nights ashore.

Still also remember the guy that used to make the music with the coins on the tray.

Joe C
27th July 2010, 11:57
Alan, here's a link to the past that you've just triggered.I don't want to wander off into unrelated territory but Gerry,in addition to being the heart and soul of every party,was a really talented singer and a good barber,providing you wanted a crew cut!

McMorine
8th August 2010, 13:59
Hi Alistair,
That's the one although for the life of me I cannot remember which ship I was on at the time. I seem to remember being taken to Lucky Pierre's by either you or Mike Ward, drinking Irish Whisky's until dawn. What was the name of the place which sold the drink called "Hurricane"; when you bought the drink you bought the glass as well??
Regards,
Boatlarnie

I've still got my "Hurricane Glass" from Pat O'Brians, might be worth a few bob now.

pete
8th August 2010, 16:47
Ah Hah McMorine !! have trumped you with Two Hurricane Glasses and 4 of the smaller ones and in addition I have an Irish Coffee Mug from the Preservation Hall. Bl**dy good memories. Sigh....................pete

jimthehat
8th August 2010, 18:20
There was a barber shop around the corner of the Mish, had many a kip in the chair whils the girls fixed my hair!
How many Bank line chaps had their cut in the comfort of a proper barbers chair on the isipingo/inchanga,thats where i had my first crew cut.
Playing around in the isipingos radio room

jim

Ron Stringer
8th August 2010, 19:12
Jim,

I should think that many of the R/Os on the site also sailed with that radio room configuration - Oceanspan, Reliance, CR100 or CR300, Autokey etc. Thought I had gone to heaven when I eventually had a ship with Globespan and Atalanta!

McMorine
13th August 2010, 17:40
Ah Hah McMorine !! have trumped you with Two Hurricane Glasses and 4 of the smaller ones and in addition I have an Irish Coffee Mug from the Preservation Hall. Bl**dy good memories. Sigh....................pete

Does anyone remember Sapporo Beer in Japan being served up in a tall Boot shaped glass. I still have one and it came from a bar either in the Motomatchi Kobe or Isisakicho Yokohama. There was a correct way of drinking from it, if you got it wrong, you would end up with an air lock forming in the toe of the boot and the beer gushing out all over your face. Many a good laugh with that one. Apologies for any incorrect spelling of Japanese place names, but many of you will remember those streets.

mmurray
13th August 2010, 18:33
The Father's Moustache in Durban was a little further round on the South Esplanade about 2 doors along from the Cockney Pride, the Point Road was for later in the evening when the Pussy Cat club got going

On passage from Rotterdam to Jakarta we stopped in Durban for bunkers. A number of us had to go up the road to renew our jabs, and a number tagged along for a free lift, we reurned via the Cockney Pride. With the assistance of strong drink the Second Mates wife flashed the piano and we accompanyed her with vocals. We then purchased the piano, before money changed hands we realised that no taxi was going to take us back with said piano, so we stayed and drunk the collection. We all go some "conselling" from the "OldMan" when we arrived back 6 hours after the stated sailing time.
Thanks Joe for reminding me of a great day out.

Billieboy
13th August 2010, 20:52
Does anyone remember Sapporo Beer in Japan being served up in a tall Boot shaped glass. I still have one and it came from a bar either in the Motomatchi Kobe or Isisakicho Yokohama. There was a correct way of drinking from it, if you got it wrong, you would end up with an air lock forming in the toe of the boot and the beer gushing out all over your face. Many a good laugh with that one. Apologies for any incorrect spelling of Japanese place names, but many of you will remember those streets.

Had a cargo of Sapporo in #3 tween decks when some cotton caught fire,(at anchor in Yokohama), as the sailors were fighting the fire bottles were being passed up on the port side aft, they were hot and needed to cool down, there were never more than three or four bottles on the deck. Three days later the ship was saved and in dry-dock, the OM said that there were some forty cases(of 12xpint bottles), lost in the fire. This left 10 cases which the adjuster gave to the ship. never ever seen so much free beer in my life!

As for the boots, I have two one large and one small(two litres), but they are Heineken 1976 models.

Innes
13th August 2010, 22:13
Maybe so China Hand, but thought I would rev people's memories up a bit, also mine as maybe more 'fun' places are mentioned. Anyone remember Fathers Moustache in Bourbon Street; used to meet some real nice chicks there who were always up for a party. Then of course there was wonderful OZ with those lovely girls who'd phone as soon as you berthed asking what time the party was. I seem to remember never getting ashore there, parties every night, work during the day and so it went on at each port. On the Laganbank we had been chartered to KLSN from Europe to South America; at the latter, the stevedores did a lot of broaching despite our best efforts so, whilst hatch cleaning, many bottles of various kinds of booze came to light. We then loaded for Aussie via Gulf ports, on way across Pacific, Les Steers and myself converted the smoke room into a bar area which was declared as such for the Aussie Customs. They had to leave it unsearched provided we sold beer by the can, spirits by the tot and fags by the packet. Around the Aussie coast we made a small fortune selling tots to the wharfies, highly illegal I know but thank goodness no accidents. This paid for many a party around the coast which we really enjoyed. Times like these are now long gone but the memories will linger with me for ever.
Sorry to hi-jack the thread (ex Ben Line)
Yes I remember the Fathers Moustache in Bourbon St,still got a photo taken there complete with long hair and seventies moustache when sailing as an engineer with Ben Line,lost my MN ID card there as well, but thats another story

Macphail
13th August 2010, 22:38
Larchbank 1967

Barranquilla Columbia.
.
The 4th Engineer Alec Morrison, (Ex Everards), and, I, 3rd Engineer, having good time on the pop.
Two locals challenged us to a game of pool. $10 each was put on the table, Alec was in top form and we won. The locals grabbed the money.
Alec being a Glasgow man who believed in fair play. Threatened them with the cue. They produced two evil looking hand guns.
Not worth it!.
Back to the security of our bunk on the Larchbank.

All the best,

John.

Alistair Macnab
15th August 2010, 00:04
Loading timber products at a sawmill dent on the south coast of Mindinao to the east of Zamboanga (can't remember the name but it may have been Tandoc?) when the opportunity was taken to have a run ashore to some shack where beer was sold and the local girls and boys gathered of an evening to do what girls and boys do after dark. There was no electricity only kerosene lamps. Long after a sufficient quantity had been drunk by all present and careful lads should have gone back to the ship, the Third Engineer took a fancy to one of the girls who seemed to return his advances. But her steady boyfriend was also in the room and before we even knew what was going on, we had a knife-wielding Muslim Philippino making ominous advances on our brave lad who was from Belfast. Quick as a flash our Third attacked and disarmed the local. So much for good training in Ireland!
But we all had to beat a hasty retreat to the ship to the sounds of much threatening and running mild skirmishes en route. Another great night out but only in retrospect!

pete
15th August 2010, 10:43
One evening in Durban on the Hazelbank there were 6 other Bank Boats in port. 6 of us double banked on the Island and one loading Sugar under that cantilever. It was decided that all off-duty Officers and Apprentices would meet at a certain pub in town. What a night!!!! I think I woke up on the right ship...................pete

Alan Rawlinson
15th August 2010, 10:45
Loading timber products at a sawmill dent on the south coast of Mindinao to the east of Zamboanga (can't remember the name but it may have been Tandoc?) when the opportunity was taken to have a run ashore to some shack where beer was sold and the local girls and boys gathered of an evening to do what girls and boys do after dark. There was no electricity only kerosene lamps. Long after a sufficient quantity had been drunk by all present and careful lads should have gone back to the ship, the Third Engineer took a fancy to one of the girls who seemed to return his advances. But her steady boyfriend was also in the room and before we even knew what was going on, we had a knife-wielding Muslim Philippino making ominous advances on our brave lad who was from Belfast. Quick as a flash our Third attacked and disarmed the local. So much for good training in Ireland!
But we all had to beat a hasty retreat to the ship to the sounds of much threatening and running mild skirmishes en route. Another great night out but only in retrospect!

This reminds me of a run ashore in West Africa to a mud hut location where ( strong) beer was available. Some ' ladies ' appeared and they were , let's say, getting on in years and a bit care worn, not to say haggard. As the night progressed, a magical thing happened . The ladies began to look like Hollywood starlets and consequently we all got very amorous, especially as the jungle drums started up what passed for music, and we took to the mud floor, swaying and canoodling. Could have been the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool!

The only thing that spoiled it was the morning after and the realisation of what we had been up to....

jimthehat
15th August 2010, 12:10
This reminds me of a run ashore in West Africa to a mud hut location where ( strong) beer was available. Some ' ladies ' appeared and they were , let's say, getting on in years and a bit care worn, not to say haggard. As the night progressed, a magical thing happened . The ladies began to look like Hollywood starlets and consequently we all got very amorous, especially as the jungle drums started up what passed for music, and we took to the mud floor, swaying and canoodling. Could have been the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool!

The only thing that spoiled it was the morning after and the realisation of what we had been up to....

All these previous reports of excursions just serve to give bank line a bad name.now to add a bit of class,i remember the mission in Colombo organising a trip up to kandi to see the annual elephant parade and festival,and not a bottole of beer in sight,also did a mission trip in Durban to the valley of a thousand hills,and the swetagon pagoda in Rangoon.

jim

Ben Masey
15th August 2010, 12:44
How many Bank line chaps had their cut in the comfort of a proper barbers chair on the isipingo/inchanga,thats where i had my first crew cut.
Playing around in the isipingos radio room

jim

I remember having many haircuts in the Isipingo Barber shop.Most of them carried out by the old assistant purser,now Butler,"Brown Owl",cant remember his name.
Regards,
Ben Masey

Alistair Macnab
15th August 2010, 18:31
Sorry to be writing about hairy shore excursions instead of church parades with Captain Freddy Feint or weekends at Lake Hakone with the Yokohama padre but the former remain as funny situations and the latter as educational.
I don't think the 'bad boy' image is limited to Bank Line but I stand to be corrected. After all, we all eventually grew up and are now upstanding community citizens who click our tongues at the goings-on of today's youth. They are hooligans whilst we were just high spirited!

Ben.....
"Brown Owl" on the "Inchanga" was named as such by Wilkie Rutherford. He was Second Purser and I think his name was Das. He had enormous round lensed glasses and was always greeted by "Hoot, hoot!" We never knew if he was offended and seemed to take the ribbing in good part. Purser was Ray and the Surgeon was also Ray, his father. Dr. Ray eventually went as an assistant to Dr. Ganghully ashore in Calcutta. All were Bengalis. Never knew the Barber's name.

Everyone had a nickname on the "Inchanga" bestowed by either Rutherford the Mate or by Scott-Weir the Radio Officer. Alan Macgregor was known as "Willie" and Alistair Macnab was known as "Hamish". The three Apprentices were known as "Copperbelt" (John Mellows), "Big Dogs" (Andy Lavies) and "Gums" (John Baird). "The evil than men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones"!

Billieboy
15th August 2010, 20:42
The Yokohama Padre '63-'65, David, eventually landed as padre of De Beer in Rotterdam Europoort, had many a cucumber sarnie and a cup of tea with him. The "Pelikaan"(sp), was a church barge parked outside the gate at Shell Europoort for some years in the Seventies. David had an adopted Japanese daughter whom he was trying to marry off at that time, nice kid, fantastic linguist. I seem to remember that he was posted back to the UK in the late eighties and crossed the bar in the early nineties. An honest chap, would do anything for anybody.

Joe C
16th August 2010, 19:07
This reminds me of a run ashore in West Africa to a mud hut location where ( strong) beer was available. Some ' ladies ' appeared and they were , let's say, getting on in years and a bit care worn, not to say haggard. As the night progressed, a magical thing happened . The ladies began to look like Hollywood starlets and consequently we all got very amorous, especially as the jungle drums started up what passed for music, and we took to the mud floor, swaying and canoodling. Could have been the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool!

The only thing that spoiled it was the morning after and the realisation of what we had been up to....

If it was the same trip,and I seem to recognise it,it was a flat roofed affair with rods sticking out of the corners of the walls which we used as ladders to get on the roof.
I refuse to remember anything else!

jimthehat
16th August 2010, 23:30
Sorry to be writing about hairy shore excursions instead of church parades with Captain Freddy Feint or weekends at Lake Hakone with the Yokohama padre but the former remain as funny situations and the latter as educational.
I don't think the 'bad boy' image is limited to Bank Line but I stand to be corrected. After all, we all eventually grew up and are now upstanding community citizens who click our tongues at the goings-on of today's youth. They are hooligans whilst we were just high spirited!

Ben.....
"Brown Owl" on the "Inchanga" was named as such by Wilkie Rutherford. He was Second Purser and I think his name was Das. He had enormous round lensed glasses and was always greeted by "Hoot, hoot!" We never knew if he was offended and seemed to take the ribbing in good part. Purser was Ray and the Surgeon was also Ray, his father. Dr. Ray eventually went as an assistant to Dr. Ganghully ashore in Calcutta. All were Bengalis. Never knew the Barber's name.

Everyone had a nickname on the "Inchanga" bestowed by either Rutherford the Mate or by Scott-Weir the Radio Officer. Alan Macgregor was known as "Willie" and Alistair Macnab was known as "Hamish". The three Apprentices were known as "Copperbelt" (John Mellows), "Big Dogs" (Andy Lavies) and "Gums" (John Baird). "The evil than men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones"!

So Wilkie Rutherford bestowed nicknames on every one,we sailed together on the clydebank for two years,me as senior app and Wilkie was mate .trader Holland was master,I wonder if he did the same when we were together.
I always remember wilkies favourite party trick ,get a crowd in his cabin,draw the curtains,let go with a powerful blow and strike a match.

jim

Alan Rawlinson
17th August 2010, 09:02
If it was the same trip,and I seem to recognise it,it was a flat roofed affair with rods sticking out of the corners of the walls which we used as ladders to get on the roof.
I refuse to remember anything else!

Joe, Needs must!

On the same topic, there was a popular bar/nightclub in Lagos ( when it was reasonably safe) and with fantastic music running most of the night. Had a name similar to ' Tin Can ' ( not the island) The ladies of the night all wore wigs, and these came off in your hand during any vigourous dancing . Can remember the band playing a sort of anthem about 2am every morning, and it was called '' Africa is awake! '' Electrifying!

Ben Masey
17th August 2010, 16:57
Sorry to be writing about hairy shore excursions instead of church parades with Captain Freddy Feint or weekends at Lake Hakone with the Yokohama padre but the former remain as funny situations and the latter as educational.
I don't think the 'bad boy' image is limited to Bank Line but I stand to be corrected. After all, we all eventually grew up and are now upstanding community citizens who click our tongues at the goings-on of today's youth. They are hooligans whilst we were just high spirited!

Ben.....
"Brown Owl" on the "Inchanga" was named as such by Wilkie Rutherford. He was Second Purser and I think his name was Das. He had enormous round lensed glasses and was always greeted by "Hoot, hoot!" We never knew if he was offended and seemed to take the ribbing in good part. Purser was Ray and the Surgeon was also Ray, his father. Dr. Ray eventually went as an assistant to Dr. Ganghully ashore in Calcutta. All were Bengalis. Never knew the Barber's name.

Everyone had a nickname on the "Inchanga" bestowed by either Rutherford the Mate or by Scott-Weir the Radio Officer. Alan Macgregor was known as "Willie" and Alistair Macnab was known as "Hamish". The three Apprentices were known as "Copperbelt" (John Mellows), "Big Dogs" (Andy Lavies) and "Gums" (John Baird). "The evil than men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones"!

In fact the first time we met was when I visited the Inchanga in one of the east African ports and well remember that you were introduced as Hamish.I remember "Copperbelt" the Rhodesian apprentice and the two South Africans.Andy Lavies and John Baird.
regards,
Ben

JOHNKITTO
23rd August 2010, 13:10
How about Dannys bar in Antwerp the girls had a suprise up their skirts for the unsuspecting 1st timer.

The Took Arms just outside Millwall docks in London.

The Wah Sing bar in Penang, where Hey Jude by the Beatles played forever on the Jukebox (it was good value for money as it played for nearly seven minutes. LAAAAAAAAAAAAA LAAAAAAAAAAAAA lalal........ Hey Jude

pete
23rd August 2010, 17:47
Ahhh, wonderful Penang, Launch to Jetty, Garry, Shopping, Hong Kong Bar in Chulia Street, Off to Lee How Fook for a bloody good Meal, Garry, Launch, and get as much Kip as you can. sometimes went out the back with Mama San and Papa San in the Hong Kong for a proper Malasian meal Squid or somesuch....................pete

Aberdonian
13th May 2012, 15:30
An entertaining thread, but here’s something a little more sedate!

In 1956 the “Laganbank” was alongside loading copra in Vavau when Bruce Simmonds, our Australian Mate, organised a picnic for those who would be off duty at the time. We duly set off in the motor lifeboat with a Tongan guide on board who took us to a white coral beach.

A shelving seabed afforded relatively shallow water in varying shades of brilliant blue. We swam for a while before settling down to eat meat cooked on a steel hold ventilator blank, acting as a griddle, over an open fire.

The highlight of the day came later when the Tongan directed us to a sea cave known locally as the Cave of Swallows. As can be seen from one of the attached photos, the interior walls bear extensive graffiti, applied with various colours of ships paint, going back to the 1800’s. Our guide entertained us with some fancy diving from positions high up on the walls before we finally headed back to our ship.

Aberdonian

Johnnietwocoats
13th May 2012, 16:59
An entertaining thread, but here’s something a little more sedate!

In 1956 the “Laganbank” was alongside loading copra in Vavau when Bruce Simmonds, our Australian Mate, organised a picnic for those who would be off duty at the time. We duly set off in the motor lifeboat with a Tongan guide on board who took us to a white coral beach.

A shelving seabed afforded relatively shallow water in varying shades of brilliant blue. We swam for a while before settling down to eat meat cooked on a steel hold ventilator blank, acting as a griddle, over an open fire.

The highlight of the day came later when the Tongan directed us to a sea cave known locally as the Cave of Swallows. As can be seen from one of the attached photos, the interior walls bear extensive graffiti, applied with various colours of ships paint, going back to the 1800’s. Our guide entertained us with some fancy diving from positions high up on the walls before we finally headed back to our ship.

Aberdonian


Now there's a trip I would have loved to have taken...

Thanks for sharing...

John Campbell
13th May 2012, 18:08
A trip ashore in Apia.

It was on the Fleetbank in Apia, Samoa loading copra that the Sparks, the 2rd Lecky and myself (3rd Mate) decided to climb Mount Vaea which you all know is known as the burial place of Robert Louis Stevenson who lived the last four years of his life in Samoa before his death on 3 December 1894. Stevenson, who had lived on the east side of Mount Vaea, had chosen the mountain top as his final resting place following his death, The steep path to his grave is called the 'Road of Loving Hearts.”

It takes about an hour to ascend by foot and as it was a hot afternoon taking beer and water and trudged up the mountain through the tropical rain forest where we got lost. We came upon a group of children who understood our venture and they eventually led us up the path to the grave – they were grateful of the chance to earn a few bob.

When hot and sweaty we got there we were most impressed and took photographs and read the famous inscription “Under the wide and starry sky” before wending our way down the mountain. Our “guides” left us after we gave them some dash and we soon found ourselves in what turned out to be the back garden of the Governor General’s residence. A large white colonial wooden building.

We cautiously approached. Our intention being to ask how we could get back to the ship. Suddenly we were surrounded by about four large Alsatian dogs barking and snapping at us. We froze waiting a terrible death when we heard a woman’s voice calling the dogs off. It was the governor’ meme sahib herself who saved us. She soon realised our plight and she took us in and we were soon quaffing lemonade and cakes on the veranda. She listened to our tale and kindly then got the chufeuer and he drove us back to the ship in the governor’s Rolls complete with flag on the bonnet I remember. What a sight we made as we calmbered out at the wharf infront of the 2nd Mate and some of the others who were amazed at our arrival...

I was always proud of making that trip as it was Robert Louis Stevenson’s book “Treasure Island” that inspired me to take up seafaring as he had a connection with my home port of Wick. It is said there that his fictional character “Ben Gunn” was based on a Wicker he saw when he lived there with his father building a breakwater at the port.

I wonder if any other Bankliners have made that trip to see the grave?
JC

Alistair Macnab
13th May 2012, 18:30
A shoreside excursion was often to the first bar 'up the road' but occasionally we did act like tourists especially if there was a senior officer's wife aboard whose self-appointed job it was 'to look after the Apprentices'.

On those occasions we actually did something to broaden our horizons. One time in Bangkok (Bangkok of all places!) we went on a trip around all the palaces and holy sights with the Chief Engineer's wife and, believe it or not, actually enjoyed the outing. The Jade Buddha, the Reclining Buddha, the Royal Palace, the Thai Silk Outlet, the Nielaware Factory and all the customary tourist attractions were visited and sadly depleted the spending money for the Venus Bar later that night but let's face it, the Chief's wife was only looking after her boys and trying to keep them from going astray! A difficult and unrewarding task at best!

Aberdonian
13th May 2012, 18:53
John Campbell;
I wonder if any other Bankliners have made that trip to see the grave?
JC[/QUOTE]

The Laganbank was loading copra in Apia when I made the pilgrimage to RLS’s grave up on Mount Vaea. Two local Samoan kids guided us but we had a less fortuitous trek back to the ship than you enjoyed!

Happy days.

Aberdonian

Alan Rawlinson
14th May 2012, 09:38
John Campbell;
I wonder if any other Bankliners have made that trip to see the grave?
JC

The Laganbank was loading copra in Apia when I made the pilgrimage to RLS’s grave up on Mount Vaea. Two local Samoan kids guided us but we had a less fortuitous trek back to the ship than you enjoyed!

Happy days.

Aberdonian[/QUOTE]

What a great posting - Lovely pics and story.

Always had fond memories of Apia, and also have a few snaps of the bay and the Southbank at anchor. Plus some of the local factory girls.
Could kick myself for not making the effort to visit RLS 's grave as you did.

Early 80's I reluctantly turned down a job offer to be GM of the Forum Lines, based in Apia, complete with bungalow.

Aberdonian
14th May 2012, 10:44
Thanks for your kind comments, Alan.

I am on the verge of posting the few snaps I have into the SN Gallery. The earlier ones, taken with a box camera, were not enhanced by Calcutta processing but nevertheless may be of passing interest to ex Bankliners. As another member commented recently, we could have made a great record of mid-century seafaring had digital cameras been in existence then.

For my part, I once had a yen to seek employment in Rabaul, but that is another story.

Keith

jimthehat
14th May 2012, 15:40
Thanks for your kind comments, Alan.

I am on the verge of posting the few snaps I have into the SN Gallery. The earlier ones, taken with a box camera, were not enhanced by Calcutta processing but nevertheless may be of passing interest to ex Bankliners. As another member commented recently, we could have made a great record of mid-century seafaring had digital cameras been in existence then.

For my part, I once had a yen to seek employment in Rabaul, but that is another story.

Keith

Decided at one stage to pack up and join the Oz army on one of their landing craft,but after some research i decided that sailing in and out of the islands was not for me.

jim

Aberdonian
14th May 2012, 17:22
Decided at one stage to pack up and join the Oz army on one of their landing craft,but after some research i decided that sailing in and out of the islands was not for me.

jim

In my case, I got transferred to another ship in Colombo when heading towards the UK from the Solomons and Rabaul. An additional 12 months added to my voyage time got me to the end of my apprenticeship and up for second mates ticket.

So it goes.

Keith

R58484956
14th May 2012, 17:54
On vacation in Apia my wife and I decided to visit RLS grave ( his wife is now buried beside him) Unfortuanately the day before a tropical storm hit the island and the path up to the grave was running with water and mud and by the time we got back to the Hotel Tusitala (giver of tales) we were covered in mud and soaked to the skin and the hotel staff thought it hilarious. On his final journey all the chiefs on the island carried his body up the hill to his grave. We found some flowers and put them on his grave.

Alan Rawlinson
14th May 2012, 21:44
Southbank at Apia, 1960, viewed from the coast road

John Campbell
15th May 2012, 23:17
Thanks for all the replies- I always think that we had one great adventure seeing what we saw when we did even though we sometimes did not know it. Our cameras were not up to much and here is a pic of me viewung the magnificent poem pn the grave of RLS.
JC

Waighty
17th May 2012, 11:04
While we're on the subject of nicknames, on Riverbank 1980 Pat Grist was christened "El Gristo" after he stood up to the dictatorial antics of CAVN reps in La Guira, where they tried to get us to load calcium hypochlorite in wet rusted drums (the blue book & IMO equivalent was definitely against that). Since he spoke Spanish from his days with Booth Line he said nothing and just listened to the CAVN chaps scheming and plotting as to how they could force us to take the drums. Then he launched into them in Spanish; great to watch. The upshot was that they gave us an ultimatum, take the drums or we take you off hire. El Gristo refused and they took us off hire at which point he ordered the CAVN flag down and the Bank Line flag up! He also got sparky to flash up the radio, in breach of rules, and establish communication with Bury Street. Fortunately Head Office supported him and we sat idle for no more than a couple of days. We never did load the drums but it was good fortune that the third mate, Neil Barnaby spotted the condition of them on the quayside before hand.

Dutch01527
20th July 2012, 00:15
A few spring to mind

Jaco's bar in Valpariso as a first trip 16 year old was an education in so many ways

Three of us getting arrested and spending a night in the cells in Manila for naked dive bombing the Major's garden party at a country club from the high board

18th birthday in Sydney Harbour area where the "lady" who claimed me as "her" own had a surprise in store for me

6 weeks in Mauritus working 1 day a week as 10,000 tones of sugar has loaded by hand. Rest of the time was spent on Trois Beach with the jet set French tourists

After winning an arm wresling competition in a Fijian night club inviting the whole club back to the ship for a party in a fit of drunken good will. 50 or more locals took up my kind offer. I was awoken shortly after turning in for the night at 5.00am by the straight laced and god fearing Captain purple with rage screaming " get those wh***s off my ship". His mood was not made better when my arm wrestling prize popped her head up from under the sheet and told him to shut up because she was trying to sleep.

I hope that my teenage sons do not frequent this forum!!

John Dryden
20th July 2012, 01:11
Those were the days mate,work hard play hard.Looks like you had a fine time in Bank Line.If your lads see this they won,t believe it anyway!