I’ve seen so many cliché stews join yachts only to leave twelve weeks later. These young women (girls) gleaming with joy, energy and a freshness that has the capacity to draw boys closer so they can determine whether she is worthy of their most effective one liner at the next Rybovich crew party.
For prowling deckhands a chance meeting with the newbie stew can lead to a telephone number exchange and a date with all the frills a girls dream about, like a fresh pair of jocks and an honorable mention on face book after the legendary wallet bump is used (the world’s oldest condom).
During their first weeks of employment new girls willingly bounce, dance and sing like MTV reality stars that have suddenly became famous.
Whenever we recruit a hot Barbie doll our laziest deckhand suddenly starts lifting heavy boxes and performing duties that he usually avoids like the plague. Drooling over the hot new girls curves and bumps becomes everyone’s favorite sport and topic for discussion, nevertheless the spark and energy these girls had at the start always seems to declines slowly.
Energizer bunny recruits de-energize and fail to deliver their resumes promise because they don't understand what real yachting is all about, it’s about serving the owners, guests and charter clients. The shorter hours of pre-season eventually disappear and morph into progressively longer work days that consume valuable weekend time, which prompts wiser crewmembers to adhere to unwritten curfews.
Knuckling down and paying attention to work runs second place against reality and as it completes with the dreamy temptations of shopping, socializing and wearing the latest Dolce & Gabanna sunglasses and trendsetting clothes.
These teenage and twenty something ladies very quickly get a taste for expensive delights normally beyond their well manicured fingers.
Behind closed doors these babes suffer terrible anxiety whilst lamenting their weeks of binge shopping and learn how join the other shopaholics in the return cues at random malls spread across South Florida.
A majority of girls do continue to party and drift through a cycle of binge shopping, crash diets, body cleanses, spa treatments and late nights out chasing buff lads, that occasionally leads to the exchange of body fluids with boys and girls, whilst lingering within the shadows of trendy nightclubs or the sanctity of South Florida’s finest motels and vacant guest cabins.
They say the first thing a good stewardess does is walk back to her boat and there is nothing more splendid that watching a ruffled stew make the walk of shame back onto the boat, whilst the deck crew chamois the rain scum from the topcoat, cap rails and windows.
A stewardess that makes the walk of shame usually spends her day avoiding ridicule from her crewmates and begins to understand there are boundaries which require attention. A promiscuous reputation in yachting is something that never goes away it becomes an urban legend or myth that MAKES YOU THAT GIRL.
An acceptable margin of frolicking is healthy and very wise, but the moment a persons name becomes synonymous with burning the candle at both ends, it gains the unwelcome attention of leading crew members and closed door meeting that are real come to Jesus moments that enable people to confess to their sins and change up a few gears and grab a touch of reality before being sent down the gang plank.
With new perspectives the A typical newbie begins her service apprenticeship and which allows her to become at one with all things Milie and progress toward ninja napkin folding, the etiquette of silver service and silent housekeeping. No more iPod and no more 30 minute tea breaks its head down ass up.
When the impending departure for Europe looms darkly overhead everyone’s heads and the silent fears and rumors of crossings past become crew mess stories. The science of weather and complexity of passage plans evades the comprehension of our naïve stew and a mild form of panic regularly disturbs her sleep.
On the day of departure the crew morale is normally very high and signals time for misunderstood excitement to grip everyone that has never crossed the pond. The first days are met with silver seas, cloudless skies and a cycle of watches, interior duties, sunbathing, nighttime movies and twelve hours of sleep.
The chef’s expertise destroys diets, adds pounds and requires cellulite cream to be applied around the upper legs and buttocks as snug uniforms begin to split at the seems. With a change in weather a new direction for the yacht and the crew results in rolling swells and uneasy moments at the dinner table as people’s eyes roll around and mouths purse tightly as they try to prevent projectile vomit from escaping.
Restless nights and changing time zones every forty eight hours confuse the stewardesses internal cycle and unwelcome menstrual cramps now pile onto the nauseous sensation seasickness delivers. Time now appears to stand still and the serious side of a maritime career challenges the dreamy image yachting was meant to deliver.
Upon arrival the calmness of the port miraculously negates the dizziness of seasickness.
This welcome change charges the stewardess with a viva and energy that seem impossible to recover. Some ten days after arrival the owner arrives with his wife and six guests. The season is now here and the challenges of long days and zero time off take hold. At this stage the chances of the new girl making through the season are 100%, but the chances of her completing a follow up season with this yacht a 50/50, because endless hours of work, painful feet, and finger tips contribute to a physical and mental decline that has beaten down strong suitors in the past.
Tired and worn the stewardess begins to note which boys are asleep, working and on break. Comparing her day to everyone else is an emotional journey because it seems she is now the only one doing 6am to 11pm with a one hour break roster that enables her to sneak in a power nap. The simplest of task are now difficult to perform with a smile and any criticism for the Chief Stew ends is uncontrolled tears.
The world of the newbie stewardess has now come full circle and the cliché moment arrives when she resigns precisely when the season ends. Whether she fly’s home or jumps on another boat is unknown. I wish her luck and just hope that wherever she goes a more mature outlook is taken.