The shipping industry is an industry that often goes unnoticed. Even though 90% of international transportation depends on ships, the industry and its people are invisible to the extent that people on the land have less to negligible knowledge on life at sea and how one of the world’s biggest and oldest industries works.
The U.S. maritime industry hit rock bottom starting in the early 1980s, right around the time the author was graduating from the California Maritime Academy. Even in his yearbook, it warned about how bad things were-it was a time of cost-cutting, reduced wages, desperate shipping companies, and a lack of jobs.
Eventually, he made his way out to sea as both an able-bodied seaman and as a third mate. He saw first-hand what it was like out there; from the crazy captains to the weary sailors, and from the bad food to the dangerous working conditions.
This book covers it all, and while the ships he sailed on were all scrapped long ago, the stories of the industry and what it took to make it on them, are remembered. This is his story.