Learning The Hard Way.

ray morgan
17th March 2011, 14:42
On my first trip, deck boy on the "Pyrrhus", I was on duty in the sailors mess,the crowd had a kick about some food that I had brought in for the meal, they told me to go and see the Cook ,I marched in the Galley,one hardfaced kid to the Chief Cook,he was working on a large salmon on a wooden cutting board,I started my tirade,suddenly it was cut short as a very large salmon whacked me across the head and knocked me across the Galley,right ,I said,wait till the crowd hear this,I went straight into the mess and told them what had happened,it was like a scene out off the Smash Men advert,fourteen or fifteen men were falling all over the place laughing. After that, any kicks I said ,you know were the Galley is.

Jim Mclaughlin
17th March 2011, 15:15
On my first ship as deck boy on first day was told to get into the mess room and clean the s...hole up. Told bosun that if I wanted to clean dishes and tables I would have joined catering department. It did not go well for me! Never mentioned the job of peggy at gravesend nstc.

TonyAllen
17th March 2011, 21:24
On my first trip, deck boy on the "Pyrrhus", I was on duty in the sailors mess,the crowd had a kick about some food that I had brought in for the meal, they told me to go and see the Cook ,I marched in the Galley,one hardfaced kid to the Chief Cook,he was working on a large salmon on a wooden cutting board,I started my tirade,suddenly it was cut short as a very large salmon whacked me across the head and knocked me across the Galley,right ,I said,wait till the crowd hear this,I went straight into the mess and told them what had happened,it was like a scene out off the Smash Men advert,fourteen or fifteen men were falling all over the place laughing. After that, any kicks I said ,you know were the Galley is.

Ray a funny yarn but what year was it and who was the cook,
I did 2 trips in her in 1956 Regards Tony

Pat Kennedy
17th March 2011, 21:36
If I had known what being a peggy entailed, I would have got off in the locks and gone home.
Pat

Thats another Story
17th March 2011, 22:04
yes pat cleaning the bogs after the women workers in the far east was no joke even though they left the door wide open{put me off me bacon and eggs}(Hippy)

ray morgan
17th March 2011, 22:52
Hi Tony, That was in 1959,I remember the Cooks name was Bill ,he was tall and from Birkenhead and I would say in his 60's at the time, from what I remember. Regards Ray.

Trader
18th March 2011, 00:47
If I had known what being a peggy entailed, I would have got off in the locks and gone home.
Pat

Well said Pat same here, I don't know how I managed three trips on the Bellerophon as peggy in 1952.

Ray, that cook sounds like Bill Forshaw who was Ch/cook on the Bellerophon when I was there. His nickname was Skinnyfatjack for some reason. I had a run-in with him as well, we only got chips once a week on a Friday and I was told by him not to go back for any more. We had a first trip EDH who was full of piss and importance who told me to go back for some more chips, I told him that there were no more but he insisted I go back and get some. I felt like Oliver Twist, "please sir may I have some more". Skinnyfatjack told me to piss off and asked who had sent me and when I told him he said "tell him to come himself". I relayed the message but the EDH thought better of it and just shut up.

We had some good crews on Blue Flue but occasionally you would come across some ar..holes and that EDH was one of them. I have always remembered his name, he came from Wallasey.

Alec.

ray morgan
18th March 2011, 20:17
Hi Alec, That was the only run in, I had with the Cook,I don't think it took me long to know my place ,I never regretted being Peggy, I think that came as part of the learning and any cockyness I had soon disappeared and I learned to go with the flow. Regards Ray.

Peter Trodden
21st March 2011, 13:34
Crews Peggy, what an introduction to a seagoing career. None stop work,at every ones beck and call and tired all the time.
My 1st trip, Cyclops 11.3.55. and as stated,no one told us about this in the Sea School. But a few weeks into the voyage, at night time I would sit to one side by No4 hatch while the ABs had a few beers and a yarn,and what stories I heard. These were all old men 30-40yr old (to a 16yr old,thats old) and remember it was only 10yrs since the end of the war,and some of the talk was of convoys,bombing,landings ect,some of those men would have been my age (16) during the war. I thought I was having a hard time as a Peggy! After that I shut up and got on with the job. My thoughts were They all had to be Peggy at one time,and one day I may be AB or Bosun (and I was)
ttfn. Peter T.

redgreggie
31st March 2011, 11:23
I wasn't a peggy, I was in catering and worked in the galley, loved it.

but one thing that always got me, and has stayed with me is a phrase that still makes me chuckle to this day.

I'd be busy working away, either washing out some big pans or peeling some kind of veg and the cook would ask me to 'pass that tin', I'd ask, 'which tin', to which he'd reply..........'the tin that rin-tin-tin sh1t in'.

try as I might to find out what this meant but never did, just one of those things I guess.

I was at sea from 1964-1970, so it's a while back, wonder if it's still doing the rounds?






ray............in Batley.

lazyjohn
31st March 2011, 12:00
When I was a kid, I had a part time job for the local Butcher as general dogsbody.
One day just after I started he sent me on an errand to his mates hardware shop, I had to say,"Mr ----- says, can you please sell me a rubber hammer for straightening the knives".
Being green as grass, I duly recited the message, after a chuckle and long pause he went into the back room and came back with a paper parcel. Handing me the parcel he asked me to tell Mr ----- that he had charged the hammer to Mr ----- account.

It was several days before I got the full joke, but the look on Mr ----- face when he unwrapped the rubber panel beaters hammer sent everybody else into fits.

Thats another Story
31st March 2011, 12:31
now here's one did you know you can get a left or right handed walking stick? but if someone asked you a few years ago you would think they were taking the Mickey. you can also get a rubber mallet.john

bobw
31st March 2011, 13:13
Redgreggie, Rin Tin Tin was the name of an Alsatian dog which starred in a TV series of the same name. He was a police dog. The 1960's version of TV's Inspector Rex.

redgreggie
31st March 2011, 13:36
Redgreggie, Rin Tin Tin was the name of an Alsatian dog which starred in a TV series of the same name. He was a police dog. The 1960's version of TV's Inspector Rex.





remember it well, loved it, along with The Cisco Kid and Pancho, oh, for the good old days.

but............still can't get over how old Rin-Tin-Tin morphed into a classic saying in the good old Merch.

ask any Galley Boy on here and I'll bet most of them 'endured' it, but it did seem to be peculiar to the galley.






ray...........in Batley.

Nick Balls
31st March 2011, 13:36
On supply boats with very small crews Ex deep sea men always followed the 'proper' way of going things. In this way whilst in port the duty night watch simply consisted of a single AB, doing everything including the widely disliked task of 'being peggy'. A bl**dy fine job they did as well I can tell you! One cook I sailed with had warned everyone that he was quite happy to leave food out ready for the lads returning from trips up the road, but that he did not want to see peggy having to clean up the resulting mess in the middle of the night. He warned them to tidy up after themselves but still the problem remained, until one night , slightly the worse for ware the cook himself lurched back into the mess-room in the early hours to be greeted by a sea of buttery knifes, crumbs and dirty plates. Losing his temper he opened the porthole and simply chucked the whole lot over the side......or so he thought........ The night watch was up on the foc'sel checking the moorings when he heard the crash of breaking plates on the quay. Realising that the shipping office was just across the street and that come the morning the super would be down and with quick thinking and a broom he 'hid the evidence'....... The Mate demanding the next day as to where all the plates forks and spoons had gone and muttering about having to justify another order just as the super turned up saying how smart and tidy the inside of the boats accommodation looked.

Robert Hilton
31st March 2011, 15:39
Rin Tin Rin predates television being common by some decades. Black & white reel films were shown after classes at my school in the 40's.

Thats another Story
31st March 2011, 16:20
same time as ROY ROGERS and trigger.john

Pat Kennedy
31st March 2011, 16:34
I wasn't a peggy, I was in catering and worked in the galley, loved it.

but one thing that always got me, and has stayed with me is a phrase that still makes me chuckle to this day.

I'd be busy working away, either washing out some big pans or peeling some kind of veg and the cook would ask me to 'pass that tin', I'd ask, 'which tin', to which he'd reply..........'the tin that rin-tin-tin sh1t in'.

try as I might to find out what this meant but never did, just one of those things I guess.

I was at sea from 1964-1970, so it's a while back, wonder if it's still doing the rounds?






ray............in Batley.

Ray,
I heard that Rin tin tin phrase all over the place, and I dont think there was any special meaning, it was just the alliteration sounded amusing.
Best Regards,
Pat

hughesy
3rd April 2011, 18:17
I was galley boy and pantry boy to, but I thought it was the worst job on the ship. galley boy in my opinion was the worst, pissed up cooks and the like, seeing the deck crowd having days off job and knock.
I bet theres not many folk on here can remember the galley boys name they sailed with.
I went over to a British ship it was some port in Brazil to trade some books (I was on a greek Ship as R/O) talking to two officers on the deck, this grease stained galley boy passed us to empty the gash, these two guys never said hi bye or kiss my **** to this young kid.
Thats just the galley boy they said, I said I know I did that job, some what embarrassed they changed the subject I said hi ya to the Galley lad and went off, on many ships I never spoke saw hide ner hair of any of those high and mighty officers. Except on inspection, were they would check out all the graft I'd done cleaning the heads and fridges, alleyways and the like.

all the best
hughesy

Pat Kennedy
3rd April 2011, 18:38
Hughesy,
When I was a deckboy, I always was mates with the galley boy and the pantry boy. They were valuable friends, with access to extra grub, and passed on useful tips on cleaning brass and scrubbing minging soup kits.
Regards,
Pat

hughesy
3rd April 2011, 23:37
I was always good chinas with the deck boy too Pat, as I was intrested in rigging and that, the lower echsclons so to speak, plus I always got them extra rations from the fridges ie fruit, cheese etc

all the best
Hughesy

Trader
4th April 2011, 00:05
I bet theres not many folk on here can remember the galley boys name they sailed with.


all the best
hughesy

hughesy,

I remember the galley boys name on my first trip and that was 59 years ago. He was Arthur Byeland, we joined the Blue Funnel ship Bellerophon on the same day, I was deck boy (peggy). I was so pleased to see some one that I knew, we had been at the Outward Bound Sea school at Aberdovey together. I often wonder what happened to him.

I also remember another kid when I was AB later on a ship called the Uskmouth, an old tramp. He was so downtrodden I felt really sorry for him, the Ch./cook was a real pisshead and left every thing to Douglas. I used to peel his spuds for him on my standby on the 12 to 4 watch to give him a head start the next day. No spud peelers in those days.

Regards............Alec.

IAN M
4th April 2011, 02:27
Rin Tin Tin first appeared in 1931. The male star was Frankie Darro and the films were serialized in our cinemas; each episode ending with the hero being in danger.

brvhrtjimmy
7th September 2011, 05:35
just reading all these posts,when i worked in the shipyard in the early sixties,i always seen the cook/cooks but i dont ever remember seeing the galley boy,nor even mention of him,we used to get the job of changing the firebrick in the galley stove,never much room to work just the round hole at the top,but we were usually always kept going with tea all made by the cook.
James Barr (Brvhrtjimmy)

ALAN TYLER
7th September 2011, 17:45
I was a first trip galley boy in 1963, enjoyed 90% of the time, peeling spuds by hand and up to my elbows in lovely soapy suds the hard soap used to make!!! My first Chief Cook was called Don Bateman from the East coast and he taught me alot, still remember him to this day with fond memories. His brother in law was Ch/Stwd Don Harrison who I sailed with in later years when I was Ch/Cook. Happy Days.

Hugh Ferguson
7th September 2011, 17:53
Great thread this-love it!!

ray morgan
8th September 2011, 12:24
Hi Alan,I was coming home from Freemantle DBS,but took the galley boys job to come home with some money,I remember we had a spud machine instead of peeling them,they were like marbles when I turned it off,to make sure I only had to eye them.(lazy boy.)That was the"Dorset".

hughesy
9th September 2011, 02:56
Hi Alan,I was coming home from Freemantle DBS,but took the galley boys job to come home with some money,I remember we had a spud machine instead of peeling them,they were like marbles when I turned it off,to make sure I only had to eye them.(lazy boy.)That was the"Dorset".

Them machines was tiny? you could only get about 4 or 5 big spuds in em, once you got good at peeling the "murphys" it was full steam ahead have the job boxed off in no time. It was trying to get those big dixies clean with horrible soap in the old can with the holes in the bottom that got me. Especially bad after breakfast or a big fry up.
That soap was "last"

all the best
hughesy(Thumb)
H

barrinoz
9th September 2011, 05:48
Becoming 'peggy' came as a big surprise. No pre-warnings of that! I actually didn't mind it to be honest. I had a great crew on my first trip and a pretty good blocker who let me out on deck homeward bound. I'd never seen a jasper in my life, though. Had enough sass to suggest to the mate when he asked me if I wanted to come back next trip that I would but only if he upped me to JOS. Called me a cheeky monkey but agreed. One trip only as peggy/deckboy.
barrinoz.

Binnacle
9th September 2011, 12:34
One master I knew had answered a knock on his door, before breakfast one morning, to find the chief steward, now deceased, fall into his cabin with a galley knife sticking into his back. Apparently the galley boy had been scrubbing the galley deck when the c/s came on the scene and shouted criticism and abuse at the boy. The boy had been the victim of this abuse since joining the ship and his limit of tolerance being now exceeded, he grabbed a galley knife and stabbed the c/s. The ship deviated to the Seychelles, a British colony, where the boy was arrested and put on trial for manslaughter ?. Evidence was given that the c/s had made the young boy's life very unpleasant aboard the ship. The master and other witnesses gave evidence of the boy's good behaviour and character, which obviously influenced the judge who gave the boy a relatively light prison sentence. After a short period the boy was allowed to take up work outside the prison. After his sentence was up he settled there and hopefully lived happily ever after.

dom
9th September 2011, 13:54
hughesy,

I remember the galley boys name on my first trip and that was 59 years ago. He was Arthur Byeland, we joined the Blue Funnel ship Bellerophon on the same day, I was deck boy (peggy). I was so pleased to see some one that I knew, we had been at the Outward Bound Sea school at Aberdovey together. I often wonder what happened to him.

I also remember another kid when I was AB later on a ship called the Uskmouth, an old tramp. He was so downtrodden I felt really sorry for him, the Ch./cook was a real pisshead and left every thing to Douglas. I used to peel his spuds for him on my standby on the 12 to 4 watch to give him a head start the next day. No spud peelers in those days.

Regards............Alec.

was it the Uskmouth or Uskside the Ch.Stwd used to play the violin,good trips down to the Med.

kevjacko
10th September 2011, 11:46
I started as Galley boy with BP in 1981 first trip was the Dragoon, I got logged my first day on board (joined in Hamburg) an incident that seemed to follow me round the fleet for a number of years. More than one fellow crew member who I'd never sailed with when they heard my name, would come out with 'were you the galley boy that got logged first day on the Dragoon'?

I actually quite enjoyed being galley boy, that first trip taught me more about people and how I should conduct myself, and treat other folk than no other time in my life. I'll always be grateful and hold in fond memory those on board that ship who would take you under their wing, give you fatherly advice or seemed to sense when you were struggling a bit and just give you that kind word in your ear.

On the other hand I'll never forget the what in modern parlance would be called bullies, who made your life hell for no other reason than they'd been at sea longer than you, you were a kid, and an easy target. Cowards to a man. There was an AB on there who constantly tried to catch me out with all the usual practical jokes, bread for the helicopter, pay the electricity bill etc etc etc. I come from a long line of seafarers some of them ex BP so I knew what the wind ups were going to be before I joined. This AB (Yes I can remember his name, I have a very long memory for people like him) used to go absolutely furious to the point of aggresive because I would'nt fall for his wind ups. Absolutely no need for it and I always think of him as one of lifes example's of how not to be.

Pat Kennedy
10th September 2011, 13:18
Kev,
I think most ships had one or two bullies. There was one on my first ship, Blue Flue's Achilles. He was an AB who liked to humiliate those he considered to be below him, especially the deck boys.
One time he came back into the messroom after everyone had finished their dinner and left.
'I thought I told you to clean the gunge off the sauce bottle'
'Sorry, I forgot'
'Well you wont forget this'
And he punched me in the teeth.
I'd like to say I got revenge somewhere down the line but I never did, it was just accepted that someone would always make your life a misery if they could, at least until you gained an equal footing with the rest of the crowd.
Regards,
Pat

ChandlerBird
13th September 2011, 18:28
Joined Houlder Brothers in October 79 as galley boy on the Humbolt. Sea sick almolst every day for the next 3 months. Long forgot cooks name, but he as Black, realy lovely chap who taught me a lot. Stayed with company for the next 8 years. Would do it all again.

Mick Spear
13th September 2011, 19:01
One master I knew had answered a knock on his door, before breakfast one morning, to find the chief steward, now deceased, fall into his cabin with a galley knife sticking into his back. Apparently the galley boy had been scrubbing the galley deck when the c/s came on the scene and shouted criticism and abuse at the boy. The boy had been the victim of this abuse since joining the ship and his limit of tolerance being now exceeded, he grabbed a galley knife and stabbed the c/s. The ship deviated to the Seychelles, a British colony, where the boy was arrested and put on trial for manslaughter ?. Evidence was given that the c/s had made the young boy's life very unpleasant aboard the ship. The master and other witnesses gave evidence of the boy's good behaviour and character, which obviously influenced the judge who gave the boy a relatively light prison sentence. After a short period the boy was allowed to take up work outside the prison. After his sentence was up he settled there and hopefully lived happily ever after.

What a good yarn. Thanks for posting.
Mick S

john blythe
24th September 2011, 13:38
my first trip galley boy, long time ago now. the cook was from liverpool paul terry . he said one thing thats all ways stuck in my mind .remember son im your f*****g mother now (Thumb) hi paul if your still around

lakercapt
24th September 2011, 17:57
I remember the first galley boy I sailed with. Peter Henderson and on occasion I would help him peel the mountain of potato's so he could knock off early and we could go ashore together.
He came from "Shields" (North) as I don't think they recognized the other one.
Initially I thought that I had the worst job on the ship (first trip apprentice) but soon understood that his was as on occasion we got weekends off in port, if not night watchman.

lakercapt
25th September 2011, 00:05
Pats post about bullies on board jogged the grey matter.
I was bullied by one AB and to this day remember his name.
It was Angus McKinnon.
One night when I was night watchman Angus just managed to stagger up the gangway and got as far as a coil of rope on the poop. Out for the count.
Unlike Pat I got my revenge.
Hauled him to the top of the companionway (the crew quarters were on the poop.) and heaved him down. He did not waken up so I gave him a few kicks as sort of comeback and hauled him off to his bunk.
Next morning I had to waken the crew for daywork and told Angus that if he ever gave me a hard time again when I was helping him to his bunk I would just leave him where he lay.He was thankful for my help and gave me 10/- (Aussie)as way of thanks so I got my revenge and pay for doing so. Never did figure out where the bruises came from!!!

stevie burgess
25th September 2011, 02:20
Well Lakercapt he certainly was a nice enough bloke when i sailed with him...several times as Bosun and we had many a good yarn together along with a few drams. I take it that it's the same bloke we're talking about..came from the Western Isles but lived in Southampton for many years. I take it that you didn't see the post that his nephew put on two weeks ago about his passing away...his funeral was last Sunday in Barra i think. I can't say that i got much bullying when i first went to sea so i guess i was a lucky one!

lakercapt
25th September 2011, 04:09
Well Lakercapt he certainly was a nice enough bloke when i sailed with him...several times as Bosun and we had many a good yarn together along with a few drams. I take it that it's the same bloke we're talking about..came from the Western Isles but lived in Southampton for many years. I take it that you didn't see the post that his nephew put on two weeks ago about his passing away...his funeral was last Sunday in Barra i think. I can't say that i got much bullying when i first went to sea so i guess i was a lucky one!

Could not be the same person as he was in his late 30's then and that was in 1953.
I did sail with another of that name who was bosun on the "Salmela" and he was as different as chalk and cheese. A very good shipmate who helped me out on many occasion with the crew. I think that is the person to whom you were referring

stein
25th September 2011, 14:56
From what it reads like, being a Peggy must have been much the same as having “Bakkstørn” (Turn at the Forecastle) in Norway. It entailed cleaning the toilets. We were handed some white powder called “caustic-soda” in Norwegian (maybe the same in English), as aid in this work, and at my first Bakkstørn I dumped half a kilo or so in each toilet bowl and went out on deck for a long smoke, expecting the stuff to do its work without my interference. Well, by the time I got back to work the stuff had hardened into something much like concrete, and I got a full evening's job hacking it out again. Not really an example of “the romance of the sea.”