Cutting your teeth in the 1% Industry


I call the marine industry; the 1% industry because at one time, it may be more now, that it was only 1% of everyone in the world knew about or was working in the yachting industry.

Today the industry is flooded thanks to the advent of the social media websites on the www.   The world has become a smaller place with information being able to be accessed a bit more readily than in previous years. With that in mind it was time for my first job!  During my STCW, a five day course comprised of STCW 95 Personal Safety & Social Responsibility or PSSR, Elementary First Aid, Personal Survival Techniques and Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting,


I met a young budding mate that his dream was to be captain of a super yacht one day. Our friendship grew as we told stories of our pasts and we discussed our hopes and dreams for each of us.

He told me about a small sixty two and a half foot Sanlorenzo yacht that was looking for a temporary charter chef and that I would be perfect, so he scribbled down the phone number of a captain and during a break at the school I phoned him and we had a beautiful conversation. I was asked to come by the boat, which was in someone’s backyard along the ICW in Fort Lauderdale, so after the school had ended off I went to see what this lifestyle had to offer.

Upon arrival at the home, I was greeted by two gigantic dogs who began to slather me with their spit as they sniffed me to pieces, now with gained acceptance I was free to move into the back area and there she was!

What was to be my first boat in the yachting industry, crisp blue and white she sat, and at the time I thought she was a big one.


I greeted the captain just outside the boat, with gray unkempt hair, brown teeth from smoking too much and a raspy hello so my career in yachting began.

I was to be the chef/stew/deck position for two weeks and two separate charters, the first one we were to cross the gulfstream and make it to Cat Cay for pick up  but what was looming on the horizon hadn’t even crossed my mind yet.  My first order of business per the captain, was to provision the boat…

… I went to the small, closet like galley and found that the freezer often went down and would not work while underway, or at all for that matter.  The party begins.


Provisioning began with two great big handles of Captain Morgan’s spiced rum and a bag of limes, and coca colas in a can.  There was something about the taste of the coke in the can as opposed to the taste in the plastic liter bottle.  Shrimp, lobster tail, beef tenderloin and a bevy of other so called high end stuff was purchased and stuffed into any and every crevice in the aging refrigerator dotted with spots of black mould and a lower, pull out drawer style freezer that when tugged on came out only on the left side first dropping rust particles onto the already dingy flooring in the galley.

Written by: Peter Ziegelmeier


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