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Old 05-30-2014
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Pissed off crew

I am sure I will get different opinions about this because I can see both sides, though I feel a tad stronger for mine. I would, however, like to see what others think. I have volunteered numerous times for various sailboat deliveries through OPO and other sources. I have not yet had a bad experience: until now.

This was not Rockdawg bad, but still pissed me off.

Here was the post I responded to:

ďI had a crew member that hard to cancel today (4-30-14) because of illness in the family.
I will be skippering a Beneteau 42 Center Cockpit. Departing (weather permitting) Baltimore Maryland on Monday May 12th and arriving in Hamilton Bermuda on Friday May 17th and setting off from Bermuda on May 27th (after a nine 9 day layover) and arriving back in Baltimore, Maryland on Sunday July 1st. The boat is fully equipped with safety gear, electronics, weather router and communications equipment. There is no smoking or alcohol consumption while at sea. I will need one (1) crew with offshore experienced. Crew must have all personal & safety gear. The trip is free with all reason able on board expenses included (food), but more exotic provisioning and social drinks paid individually. The crew must cover transportation expenses to and from the boat. I would like the crew to e-mail me, their sailing resume.Ē

I have sailed with this guy before and saw that I might be able to make part of the trip, so emailed him and told him I could make the sail back from Bermuda if he needed me. He said he would be happy to have me sail with him again. I emailed him on May 2 saying I would fly into Bermuda on either May 25th or the 26th and asked if I could stay on the boat so I didnít need to rent a room. He said I could stay on the boat. He never mentioned that he might depart early.

Now when I commit to a crew position like this, I know that there may be weather delays. So I make myself available for at least twice the expected sail time, because I donít want to ever leave a skipper stranded because of my time constraints. I have never planned on extra time at the other end and have never thought of it. So for this trips I made certain I had ten day and even possible two weeks available. I had to reschedule court dates, which takes time because I have to go into court to do it. I also declined an offer to race in the Figawi, which is something I love to do. More importantly, I try to make a trip like this once or twice a year and it is not easy to block out times for trips like this.

So the Friday before I left I emailed him and confirmed that I would be flying in on the 26th for departure on the 27th. He emailed me back and asked if I could move my arrival date to the 25th because now he wants to depart on the 26th. I told him I would see what I could do. My ticket to Bermuda was only $160, but it would have cost me and additional $350 to change my departure to a day early. So I told him that I couldnít justify that cost and that I would still need to pay for my transportation from Baltimore back to Boston. But I told him if he could kick in half I would do it. I also pointed out that my flight came in at 11:00 A.M on the 26th. I knew he had to sail from Hamilton to St. Georges and I told him I could meet him there. He then told me not to bother coming. I was really pissed and wanted to lay into him, but I exercised restraint and here was my response:
ďI truly wish you had informed me that you may depart earlier than your posted departure date, which you posted as the 27th. I let you know as early as May 7th that I would be flying in on either Sunday or Monday, and you didnít suggest Sunday or earlier. Wasting $160 doesnít bother me as much as the pain in the ass it was for me to reschedule appointments and court cases so I could have enough time off to make sure I could wait out any weather delays and crew for you. Once committed, I didnít want to let you down. It also bothers me that there were other sailing opportunities that I gave up so I could crew for you, including a spot for a race this weekend that I do most years. I am also glad that I checked in with you because I would have been really pissed if I arrived in Bermuda only to find out that you had already left.

On the other hand, I know that sail plans change, and yours is probably being dictated by a weather window. So I am writing this so that you may understand the inconvenience these changes may cause your volunteers, so that maybe next posting you will advise them to arrive early if there is a chance that you are going to depart early. I would hate to think because you donít have to pay OPO members you feel their time has no worth.

Fair winds.Ē

Never heard back from him. No explantion, nothing.

So the lesson I learned is to ask if there is a possibility of an early departure and plan accordingly.

I know this is a very long post and thank anyone who takes the time to read it.
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