Saturday, December 08, 2012

So we've been on board the Logos Hope for just over a week now.

Kind of hard to believe.  I really should have blogged earlier, saying we've arrived, etc.

As well as jet-lag, I picked up a cold, I guess on the plane, so have been totally energyless and wanting to just crash in the evenings rather than do something productive like write.


Anyway.  Logos Hope is a much bigger ship than Doulos.  I'll try an post comparison pictures at some point.

The A/V systems on board are also quite a bit more complex and bigger.  Similar concepts, and designed by OMNIvision guys, so using equipment I'm either familiar with, or familiar with cousins of.  (I'd never mixed with an LS9, for instance, which is the digital sound desk they have on board - but I know the O1V96, which is kind of similar, and other digital sound desks).

So, we hadn't quite realised that the ship is still in 'drydock' mode, so not really open to the public, wooden boards and paper over much of the carpeting, etc.

The Hope Theatre, the amazing on board venue which they have (*so* much bigger and cooler than Doulos tiny 'Main Lounge' had been converted into a mess for the deckies and engine guys, as well as workshop, storage area, dressing room, and general chaos zone. 

Because the Dry-dock had been extended so many times, and they'd thought that initially it would be very short, much of the equipment (lights, sound desk, projectors, etc) didn't get taken down and covered properly pre-drydock.  So one job we've been doing over the last week is cleaning out the lights and projectors as much as we can, and covering them all with plastic bags so that during the cleaning of the rest of the theatre they don't get any more dusty and dirty.

(We expect a lot more dust to come up when they lift up the floor covering boards and clean up the mess).

It's pretty funny, seeing so many little bits of Doulos scattered around, like this 'world' guitar.

A lot of the equipment is slightly damaged, or very confused.

Like these poor headphones.  A lot of the settings of equipment are set to really weird settings, some of which seem to have been reset to factory settings.  Apparently over drydock a lot of equipment has been un airconditioned for 6 months or so, some of which has been off for that long, some of which has actually been used in that humid dirty state.  I guess that accounts for some of it.

But there are also jobs which have been listed as 'fixed' by the previous A/V manager but are obviously done wrong.  It's kind of irritating.  Apparently there has been very little hand over between managers for a while.  Very little sensible training, and huge amounts of knowledge have been lost.

There really is a vast ammount of work to be done, just to get the systems operational and ready for normal ministry again.  Let alone the teaching side of things.

None of the A/V team really have a lot of experience with running A/V systems, or any theoretical background in what equipment does, or how 'good' A/V should look.

They do a lot of stuff by 'if you press this button, it should work'.  Without really understanding what the button does, or why, or how to trouble shoot it if it doesn't.

There is one guy who does know a bit more about it all, he's been on break for a while so I only just met him last night.  He's been the one basically running stuff for the last few months, but he doesn't have a huge amount of experience either, (although has been doing an amazing job managing to keep anything going at all).

The team is great though, and really excited to learn more and understand it.

Anyway.  I'll post more updates later.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Déjà vu

So Becky and I have been trying to go back to the ship for a while now.

Not the Doulos, but the Logos Hope.

Somehow, I just don't seem to have got it out of our blood yet.

We though about going out late January time, perhaps flying with the new recruits from the January Conference.

So, the Déjà vu thing...

We spoke to some people in August at the GO conference, sent some emails around, waited a bit.

Waited some more.  As one does.

Anyway, we got an email last week from our friend Mark, who's one of the big manager types.

"I've spoken to the guys on board. I don't suppose you could come at the end of the month, could you? I know it's a bit short notice..."


(Those previous two exclamation points without corresponding lexical complication are in fact, grammatically correct. 'Self-explanatory punctuation' I call it.)

 So it looks like we may be back on board in 3 weeks!  Quite exciting, and a perfect excuse to start up this blog again.

Why the 'deja vu' comment? Well, it seems awfully reminiscent of my first short term ship back in 2005.  Feel free to find the archive entries if you wish!

The Logos Hope is just coming out of a very long (9 months odd) layup/drydock, and so they'd really like a couple of extra pairs of hands to help in the programmes/events/Audio-Visual stuff sooner rather than later.

More details to come later. :-)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

2 weeks in Cyprus

So Becky and I came over to Cyprus for a couple of weeks.  The last time we visited was almost 2 years ago, so this is our first time here as a married couple.

It's relaxing, and interesting, and fun, and weird being back in Cyprus.  A few things have changed, many people come and go, which is usual...

We've been catching up with loads of people from the local church (various congregations), been sailing with my dad twice, been to a performance at theatre antidote, looked at their lighting system and helped look at the audio stuff they have, played loads of Settlers of Catan & Ticket to Ride with my parents and their usual Catan-Cronies (hi guys! Hope you like your new title...), we visited Nicosia, and went across (briefly) to the North, spent time with the cats (me being somewhat cat-starved), went for walks by the salt-lake, I bought a Cyprus coffee maker, and some other bits of (tasteful) Cypriotness.  Partly because I like Cyprus coffee, and partly because I hope we'll be heading back towards the ship(s) at some point, and would like to have some stuff from the country to show people.

I can't figure out how to make the webcam take pictures (I'm writing on mum's chromebook) so you'll just have to wait for photos of the coffee maker.

Anyway. (I can't write a blogpost without at least one paragraph starting with 'Anyway'.) We're off to the UK again in a couple days, which will be odd again.

As I mentioned, briefly, we are looking at heading back towards the ship(s) at some point.  Probably for a few months at the end of the year, if we can, and see if maybe we should be going out there for a few years again at some point - when, we don't know.

I'm looking forward to seeing our friends in the UK again soon,  but not really looking forward to the weather, or work, to be honest.  Seeing live theatre stuff again... I miss it a lot.  And being at sea, even if it is on a little boat.  And warm weather, even if not that warm.    OMNIvision is doing some cool stuff, and the team is amazing, and I'm glad to be part of it.  But documentary-type video production, media-engineering and web development are kind of interesting, but not really exciting any more for me.

Thinking that next week I'll probably be fixing broken mic cables and fighting stupid Internet Explorer broken-ness makes me very gloomy.

Still.  I'm in Cyprus now, spent the day sailing with my wife, my dad, currently I have a cat purring on my lap, about to play a game of Settlers, and go out for a meal this evening with some old friends, so, I really shouldn't complain!  This has been a really good fortnight.