Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Perilous Ice Conditions Continues...

It's All Part Of The Fun!
This is the third day the ship CTMA Vacancier has been stuck in ice, two of those days have been within 100 meters of the wharf at Matane. The ice breaker Terry Fox from the Canadian Coast Guard has been close, trying to make a the ice loose so that the ship can pass. They have not so far, been successful in any way.

The Terry Fox has itself been caught up in the ice bed trying to rescue the Magdalen Islands ship. At 7:30 a fissure broke open in the ice flow, more then five square miles in size, letting the crew and the passengers believe that reaching the wharf would still be possible.

Of the 300 passengers, 150 are participants of the Ski Gaspesia event who are prisoners aboard the ship each paid $1600 to take part in the event. The event was to have one week of skiing. The organizers of the event must now re-adjust the schedules for the event. Nadia Guérette, speaker for the event organization says that traveling by ferry is part of the great adventure of the event and that all types of incidences make up the adventure.

Apparently, being stuck for three days on board a ship that is unable to move is all part of the fun. I've been stuck on board the Madeleine for 12 hours once. It isn't all that fun, but I suppose that there is a grand party going on and the crew are catering left, right and center to the passengers, which is what happens on board ships which can't come into port on time. Still it does become dull.

Also, I've been trying to think of the Vacancier when she first came to the islands late in the last century. It seems to me she was called the Isle of Turkot (Turkot is not spelled correctly) or something similar and I have the idea that she came from the Mediterranean Sea, but that may be wrong. I also had the idea that this ship did not have a strong enough hull to withstand the great impact of crushing ice.... I remember thinking, 'why would they bring a ship without at least the same or better qualities then the Lucy Maud Montcomery', the previous ship that sailed the Souris-Grindstone run. But then they took the Isle of Turkot to a ship yard to upgrade it to standards so I never considered the ship again. I have sailed on the Vacancier and she is a nice, well equipped ship. I remember going downstairs and into the berth area. The corridor down each side looked like it was miles long..., lol! I remember that I didn't like the smell of the Vacancier but then I don't like the smell of the Madeleine either. I do remember I took a hundred and one photos of the ship inside.

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