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Meet the Crew Monday: Deckhand Markus!

Meet the crew Monday! Meet 24-year-old Markus from Denmark! 🇩🇰🌊

Q: Where are you from? A: I live in Marstal on the small island of Ærø

Q: What inspired you to join Bark EUROPA? A: My inspiration to apply as crew onboard the EUROPA initially came from when I was a trainee on the Danish training ship the DANMARK. I had previously been sailing around Greenland a lot and absolutely loved the cold environments. When my Chiefmate, who previously had been sailing on board the EUROPA, told me about this awesome sailing vessel that not only occasionally sailed to Antarctica but yearly did this I was sold. I knew I had to get on board that ship to work, educate, and experience this!

Q: What is your role on board?

A: I work as a deckhand

Q: Can you tell us more about your favorite voyage?

A: I’ve been lucky enough to sail the full normal circle of the ship from Cape Town to the Netherlands, down south to Argentina and from Ushuaia down south to the magical ice continent and all the way back to Cape Town. I must say though, sailing through the Drake passage south to the eastern peninsula on the famous Cape to Cape voyage was the best voyage for me! The amount of dedication, level of seamanship, and skill of working together as a team it demands was incredible. For me, it almost can’t get wild enough, and this voyage satisfied me to the fullest!

Q: What is it like to live and work on a tall ship like Bark EUROPA?

A: As a deckie on board the EUROPA you are not only doing the sail handling, sail trimming, and stowing of these. You are challenged to do a lot more! Baking bread (Exponentially got better at this), cleaning, helping the galley, educating about funny maritime stuff doing the nights (Mostly the Morse code for my part), and making sure everybody is feeling well on board. I love how the crew and voyage crew become almost one unit on board and how working together becomes a must to ensure the experience of these voyages!

Q: What do you do when you are not on the ship?

A: I am currently studying to become a mate in Denmark

Q: Could you tell us about a unique destination you've visited on board EUROPA and what made it special?

A: 17th of May 2022, anchored outside Jamestown on St. Helena. We were lucky enough to get some hours ashore that day, which was the first time since Cape Town. I was with a fellow crewmember and the weather was nice and sunny. We agreed to climb the 700 steps long Jacob’s ladder and successfully managed to do so. The evening ended with the most beautiful sunset over the horizon and was just all in all magical

Q: Can you share a funny or unexpected moment that happened during one of your voyages?

A: It was on the Cape to Cape voyage and we had a few days before left Antarctica bound for South Georgia. It was nice sailing and we were doing good speed, and the winds were steady. This often means that you get a bit tired while on watch. We were having a coffee in the wheelhouse and suddenly a huge yellow line appeared on the radar. What was that? A huge wave or an undiscovered island? We couldn’t figure it out before Eric (the captain, aka the Wikipedia Guru) could confirm that it was the biggest floating iceberg currently in the world that we had closed up on called the A-76. This was thrilling and very unexpected!

Q: What's the most memorable moment you've experienced while sailing on Bark EUROPA?

A: It is hard to pick out a specific moment. Every moment on board is memorable but I have to say that getting the South Shetland islands in sight through the binoculars for the first time after crossing the Drake Passage knowing that now you are entering what feels like another planet is the moment that sticks out the most. A dream coming true!

Q: What is the most important lesson you've learned from your experiences on Bark EUROPA?

A: It is especially clear to me how much professionalism it requires to do what the EUROPA does. Knowing when to be calm and relaxed and then quickly adapting and knowing when to be professional and serious in various situations. It is a fine balance and it is something that I will keep with me in my future maritime career.

Q: Are there any unique traditions or rituals that the crew follows on board Bark EUROPA?

A: There is a curious thing going on around the ship when you are closing in on the equator. You can feel it days before actually crossing it. It's like something is going on around the hull under the water. Weird voices in the night, almost like someone is investigating the ship. And when you cross the line, (this section has been blurred out for all the pollywogs to experience it for themselves🌊)

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