January 20 – The Gulf of Alaska is quite rough, and I’m a bit ill. I have to pass on the mushroom casserole and stick to salad instead. I hadn’t realized that the route to Pusan passes through the Aleutian Islands at Unimak Pass. Although we will skim the Aleutians we will not go through the Pass because of bad weather to the north.
The ship is a freight hauler and, I think, this passenger is a more troublesome form of freight that can’t be lashed down. The time zone changes and insomnia keep me up at all hours, and I am allowed to wander about in the small hours of the morning. Still the Captain has been good to me, personally taking me on an extensive tour of the ship, assigning me very comfortable rooms and bringing a portable heater to my cabin. The officer’s recreation room, as far as I can tell, is unused, but offers a selection of books and DVDs, which I can watch in my cabin.
The officers above the rank of third mate eat in the officers’ mess; the remainder of the crew in the crew’s mess. I’m the only passenger.