This is one I’m ready for.
I had a former boyfriend who I told on several occasions that my dream was to go on a freighter. I got the idea from the movie “African Queen” with Bogart & Hepburn. I thought it would be great to go on a freighter. Of course, not the small freighter that the captain owned. A really, big freighter that carried supplies overseas.
My birthday was coming up and my boyfriend handed me an envelope. I thought it was a birthday card. I tore the envelope open and two tickets fell out. The tickets were for a voyage on a Polish freighter (PLO). I could not have been happier! I got up and gave my boyfriend a big hug. I never loved him as much as I did that moment. And it was not because he gave me the trip, but because of his thoughtfulness.
We sailed from Port Elizabeth, New Jersey on June 5 and arrived in Germany, June 12. The whole crew was Polish. Only two men on the freighter spoke English. We stopped in Ireland (were not allowed off), France (were not allowed to get off) and our destination, Germany. Bremen, Germany, that is.
While on the freighter, we watched American movies at night with subtitles in Polish. We ate Polish food throughout the whole trip. Polish food is very heavy and filling. I felt myself gaining weight the first three days on the trip. So I used the exercise bicycles that were on the ship. When we weren’t watching movies, we played table games and just looked out to sea. We got lucky one day and saw some whales swimming around. I was the only female on the freighter. It was a good feeling to be the lone female. All my life I’ve had to share everything with my sisters, so it was fun to be the only female on the freighter.
Most of the men on the freighter spent their time away from home. Whether they were single or married, they spent about one day at home the whole year. One man told me he saw his girlfriend one day a year. I remember telling him that never would work for me. It’d be too lonely. It is a lonely life being on a freighter.
The trip was an awesome adventure! No Disney ships for me.
Well, anyway, I got my dream to sail on a freighter. It was one of the nicest gifts anyone has given me. It’s one I’ve never forgotten.
By the way, what’s the best gift you’ve ever received? I really want to know.
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