A Thai fishing boat making a getaway after leaving its drift net in Malaysian waters. The picture below is of the Star Cruise moored at Porto Malai, Langkawi.
Usually cowboys would be associated with horses, stirrups, stetsons and of course boots. This post will tell you of a particular cowboy on boats instead, well, ships actually but then it doesn't rhyme with boots, anyway they both float on water...
The cowboy in question is one of the more extravagant character that I have met in my life. He was the captain's steward on our first ship, Bunga Tanjung. There was Serious & Blur, Leengam & Dolly and of course me. The five of us fresh out of training in our pristine white uniforms being led to the gangway of what looked like a rust bucket about to be scrapped...
Cowboy is attached to the catering department, in charge to take care of the captain. He is also one of the better dressed stewards that I have encountered at sea. In fact, the only one that wears a bow tie and a towel over his arm when he is on duty.
Officially he seldom deal with us. Off hours is another matter altogether. Following his namesake, he is nuts about anything cowboy and he dresses as one, with boots, hats and a bandana. He has a guitar, harmonica and slightly off character a saxophone which at the time he was trying miserably to learn to play. Most importantly, he is also charged with looking after some plants by the crew. Making sure it is well and alive, moving it around during inspection and harvesting... He took us in as one of the crew. It was huge fun.
The thing that I and am sure those during the time could not forget is when one day he served the captain with a bucket over his head. When asked why, he says that he is just following orders since the captain chewed him up for some mistake or rather and ended the session with "I never want to see your face again". That and of course the swimming frenzy he started by jumping from the boat deck into the Suez Canal which nearly got us all shot by an M16 wielding Arab.
Wonder what he does now ?