PARTY-- THE WAY WE DO --
Every month i allow my crew to meditate via the back door.
It is important for their mental health, in a chemical field fraught with danger.
The motto on board is WORK HARD PLAY HARD.
Every day we play with deadly chemicals on our stainless steel chemical tanker.
Mind you, this field is merciless and unforgiving.
It saps your will, if you cant win against the elements hurled against you day after day , hour after hour--
The work is enervating.
My wife , who has sailed with me for 9 years , sometimes asks me -- why don't you retire from chemicals tankers and do something more safer.
This will be like asking a tiger who tastes blood daily to eat grass, or a shark which needs the deep ocean salt water ( read as pressure ) to flow past its gills , to swim in a mangy chlorinated swimming pool..
"Meditation via back door concept " was first propounded by OSHO, a very intelligent man-- . He had the answers to life management.
YOU MAKE YOURSELF DOG TIRED IN A MEDIUM YOU LOVE -- IT COULD BE DANCING -- AFTER THAT GO TO SLEEP.
After the storm comes the peace ( maan, don't ask me how many pieces ) .
Piece -- nay-- peace , comes to you whether you like it or not.
I assure my crew continuous rest of 12 hours after such a " meditation " session. At sea we don't have the pleasure of shoving peace down our throats, by proper time consuming meditation.
When they wake up they feel like babies.
I tell my officers to keep their stripes and attitudes in their cabins , before they come down to the lounge for the party.
No coming to the party with old baggage.
For they have to jump into the melting pot. They have to place their ego on the back burner or rather melt their egos, and gel with their subordinates, once a month.
I keep a hawk's eye -- yet nobody knows this, or cares --.
For if a leader cant bond with his team in harmony in times of peace , how can he bond with them when shit hits the fan--
-- in the midst of a raging fire and bodies and limbs strewn around you, after an explosion?
In the party all are equal.
There is nobody more equal than the other. I have NOT yet seen anybody taking advantage of this relaxation of discipline.
Watch the video once more--
-- it is the equivalent of Manmohan Singh ( Chief Engineer ) and Prathibha Patil ( I the Captain ) dancing with the entire Lok Sabha ( deck crew ) and Rajya Sabha ( engine crew ) .
It is NOT about dancing entirely--
-- we have fun-- we talk -- we converse-- we sing-- we crack jokes - we reminisce--
No one-up-manship -- no putting people in their places -- no chattering minds -- no self delusions -- no hidden agendas-- no over inflated self importance -- no distorted interpretations -- no selective perceptions -- no staring into the rear view mirror -- no self pity -- no resentments--
yes-- you may call this Utopia-- all are in the moment--
No placing one leg in the past and one in the future , to piss on the present--
This does NOT mean next day my steward will try and be familiar with me-- and pat my back and say " hi buddy!". Rather he will be grateful, that I have treated him like a brother and friend -- nay-- human being , for 4 hours in a month.
My crew knows that captain does NOT like sick poultry -- that he rarely punishes a man who will be the life of a party -- who is a good shipmate --
this encourages them to let their hair down --
RELEASE THEIR LOCKED UP STRESSES !
It is a melting port for nationalities too-- In the above two pictures see Indian, Filipino, Indonesian, Peruvian, Cuban, Croatian, Canadian, Romanian, Russian sailors -- ALL HAVING A BALL!
Above picture: The man on my right, is my resourceful Canadian Chief Engineer, a very good man, we are called husband and wife , for being THE ideal Captain, Chief Engineer . Whenever I got for a new delivery ( like this ship above ) I insist that he must be my CE--bless him .
Grace and peace!
CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL
29 years in command