December 2008 I joined the Aratere again for my 3rd New Years on board working the night shift. It was so great to be back on board the ships which I started my career on. One thing I became aware of when I got on board was that you don’t really realise how much something means to you until you have gone away for a while then returned. I realised this with the Aratere. After being away from her for so long, working on other ships and sailing around different places of the world, I actually miss working on Cook Strait in New Zealand on the Rail Ferries. It’s the people that make a job worth enjoying and it’s the crew on the Rail ferries and the company which I particular like working with and for. I feel blessed to have such a great job with them and a reputation with the company that will stick for many years to come.Piloting the ship in through Tory Channel in the dark night with the moon setting over the leads to the entrance is just one of the spectacular sights of the beautiful Queen Charlotte Sound.Loading 23 Trucks on the top deck in a 22 truck space at 2am in the morning, planning the stowage and separations of trucks carrying dangerous goods – the late arrival trucks that you pray will fit on board and meet the IMDG Code requirements. All has always gone well and will continue to go well on the Aratere.
I have always worked with a great bunch of guys in the deck department; most have been from the islands in the south pacific and a pleasure to work with. You get the odd one or two that are always difficult to communicate with but like my dad say you are going to get that with any job.Working for the Inter Islander Ferries in New Zealand is a great way for a woman or young girl to start her career at sea. The company and crew on board the ships will look after you during your time with them, as well as they will through challenges at you to grow you into a strong confident young Officer.