the Language Lesson

I’ve been placed – Whoop Whoop! BUT you knew this already. What you don’t know, is how I finally managed it!

Well… It seems that the biggest issue delaying placements (all around the world) at the moment, is that most ships are currently in Europe and the Cruise Liners are insisting that employees be able to speak a European language, as well as English. This is great if, for example, you’ve done a French course (why didn’t I take French 1P at varsity?), as you get bumped to the front of the waiting list. If you haven’t… You sit and wait for 3, going on 4 months for a placement!

Keep Calm Everyone

Upon hearing about this requirement, I have been doing a bit of a crash course in German. Yup, ich spreche ein bißchen Deutsch! By “crash course” I mean that I’ve been learning some basics from a couple of German language books, learning key words and phrases from a “Wie Geht’s” German Language app (Yay for Smart Phones!) and calling for “Hilfe!” from meine wunderbare Freundinnen for pronunciation and translation of “ship-shape” phrases. Varied methods right? Well it must have worked, because I sent an email to my Course Director explaining the extent of my German and the following week, hey presto, I was placed!

If you are interested in becoming a ships photographer, it isn’t necessary for you to be fluent in a European language. In a nut shell, you basically just need to be able to greet guests, introduce yourself, exchange pleasantries, give them directions, tell the time and pose them for their photos. It can’t be that hard… Even SpongeBob SquarePants can speak some German!

If you don’t speak a European language, you will probably be sent to Alaska or stay in the Caribbean during the European Summer season. If you do speak a European language, it might influence, not only you being placed in Europe, but also your home port. For example, if you choose to learn French, there is a high possibility that you will spend most of your time sailing in and around France. This doesn’t mean that you won’t visit other countries, because you will. One of the Photogs from my group speaks Italian and his future ship’s itinerary consists of ports in Italy and Croatia.

For my part, I have been placed on a ship that, although sails into one German port, will mostly be sailing around the North Sea, Norwegian Fjords and the Baltic Sea. Clearly, I’m not going to be based in Germany, but I will be “close” to Germany, compared to being in the Mediterranean and I have a sneaky suspicion that there will be many German guests on board! This is just something that I have noticed and is more a rule of thumb than a sure thing.

Okay… Before I get back to my German studies, how about a joke?

Screw in a Lightbulb


Q: How many Germans does it take to screw in a light bulb?

A: Two! One, to screw in the light bulb and the other to hold his beer!



Oh and by the way, I’ve put my Cruise Itinerary up! If anyone is interested in where and when I’ll be sailing, please check it out!



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