Well, here I am again, writing a new blog post after a long time of silence. I have no excuse other than, what happened to 2020???

Obviously that’s a bit of a cop-out as half of 2021 has also passed, but more on that later.

So whats happened since the last blog post???

The Covid-19 Pandemic has continued, though now, experimental vaccines have been rolled out, authorised on an emergency trail basis. Political disinformation has continued. Joseph R Biden Jr. became the 46th President. Personally, I’m enjoying having someone so boring in charge (no offence meant Joe.), though the former guy seems unable to accept that fact. An insurrection took place in Washington that resulted in four deaths, but the former guy and his lackeys are dismissing it as a ‘tourist visit’ or some such.

2020 was an odd year. The year of Covid-19, Corona Virus, whatever you want to call it. Even though lots of countries, and smaller jurisdictions, imposed quarantines and lock down orders at various times and for various duration’s, work for me mostly continued pretty much as normal through 2020. As, when I am at home, I’m pretty much a hermit anyway, the lock-downs didn’t have much effect while on leave either. The vessel changed to having complete crews change out at once, rather than having the personnel crew-changing staggered, and trips tended to be a bit longer to minimise the risks involved with travel, but pretty much business as usual what with the oil industry as a whole being regarded as ‘essential’.

What did surprise me, although it probably shouldn’t have, was how reaction to the pandemic was so politically polarized in the US. Democratic politicians and supporters largely ‘following the science’ and advising/adhering to social distancing and mask wearing, while Republican politician and followers largely denying the seriousness of the situation and asserting their individual right to ignore good advice.

With, currently, over 34 million cases recorded and over 600,000 fatalities attributed to Covid-19 in the US, it does seem to suggest that the Democratic followers may have had more of a point. The good news is that, along with a roll out of the vaccines that has improved since the new administration took over, as a result cases and death are down in the US, although other regions of the world are still experiencing rises in cases.

While work largely continued as normal, since January 2021, I have had an extended time at home. This was due to Melisa being diagnosed with a serious ailment just before I was due to join the vessel for what would be a 56 day intercontinental transit. Given that, had anything gone wrong and Melisa had taken a turn for the worse I would have been unable to get home quickly, I decided to skip the trip and have an extended leave. The company were accommodating with this and I ended up being at home for 4 months.

Other than the worry about Melisa, it was great. I have not had this sort of time at home in over twenty years, and it is the longest that Melisa and I have ever been together. As Melisa puts it, we didn’t kill each other so it was a success.

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