Etiquette on board ship is just as relevant as any other time or place, perhaps even more so as you’re living in very close proximity to others. Your days and nights are spent pulling on ropes and scrubbing the decks, keeping watch in the pouring rain, climbing the rigging and setting the sails. It can be a high stress environment but in order for a ship to run smoothly there must be discipline and there must be teamwork. Manners and considering the needs of your shipmates are therefore of paramount importance.
When I refer to table manners at sea I’m not talking about the manners you use on some lavish Caribbean cruise or leisurely yacht charter. If that’s the kind of seafaring you enjoy then I recommend eating as you would at a fine dining establishment. I’m talking about when you’ve barely slept in four days; you’re cold, and your clothes are dirty and smell musty. Your muscles ache and you have bruises down your arms; your stomach is churning from sea sickness and you feel woozy but there is no option of taking a nap. Etiquette and manners may be the furthest thing from your mind but they matter. Continue reading