Food, stress, fun, loud music and a lot of dishes to clean – that is how working in the galley looks like on bord of the Thor Heyerdahl.
A normal day in the galley starts at 6 o´clock in the morning. Everyone is still tired but there is no time to rest, because the breakfast for watch 4 has to be ready at 7:20 am. One of the most important things for breakfast is the fruit salad. This means that the fruit that were prepared for the morning have to be cut. At the same time we also boil water for tea and coffee. Next to fruit salad and hot drinks we serve bread, cheese and ham for breakfast. If you are lucky enough to work in the galley on a Sunday or Thursday you may prepare something special like pancakes or French Toast. I love the days when we can do something special, it is fun to experiment with all the student‘s recepies and in the end everyone who tastes the food we made is smiling. Besides the things that are done in the galley also the mess room has to be ready for breakfast. For us in the galley that means setting the tables and preparing the ingredients for the muesli. As soon as the first people come to eat, our job is to serve them. In my opinion this is one of the most stressful parts of working in the galley, because no matter how well prepared you are there is always one thing you forgot. Only when everyone on board had breakfast, also the workers in the galley may eat. Eating as the galley team means that sometimes, there is even a little bit more left of everything. In this case, this allows us to have little bit more fruit salad or French Toast than the ones that came before us. Unfortunately we do not have a lot of time to enjoy the food, because now there comes the most fun part of working in the galley, doing the dishes for 50 people. How lucky we are that the galley is the one place on bord where listening to loud music is allowed. When you dance and sing while cleaning, you feel like it takes half of the time that it actually does take.
While two of us do the dishes the other ones start making lunch. Cutting vegetables, cooking rice, melting cheese or what ever you decided to make for lunch. Lunch is the hot meal on bord, so it is the most important one. Thanks to the great food (fresh fruit from Tenerife, Spanish cheese, homemade jam etc.) we have on board, cooking lunch is always a great pleasure. You can be creative with the ingredients and the spices you use, so in the end we always have great meals. If the weather is good we can eat outside, that means less to prepare for us in the galley. We give the meal out of the bulleyes and everyone can eat outside. When everybody is full and happy, the work for us starts again. Cleaning the galley and the dishes.
The next meal is afternoon tea. On Sundays and Thursdays also for tea there has to be something special for example cake or Tiramisu. On the other days we eat biscuits and fruit for tea most of the time, so that there is not too much to do, thanks to that you can even have a little free time to relax. When tea is finished at about 15:15 we restart cleaning and start with preparing dinner.
Dinner is quite similar to breakfast. There is bread, ham, cheese and rests of lunch. In addition to that in the galley we normally prepare something extra, that can be Toast Hawaii, Gazpacho, Bruschetta or something else we like. After dinner we again clean the dishes and start getting the galley as clean as possible. That means wiping every surface, scrubbing the ground and a lot of other things. If you are lucky there are some friendly students or crew members that help cleaning. In the end the galley has to be checked by a crew member. As soon as everything is alright, we can go to bed.
Most of you might think now, that working in the galley is a horrible job, where you only clean and clean and clean but, there is also a lot of fun, interesting conversations and happy faces when the food you cook tastes well. So to conclude one can say, that working in the galley is hard and annoying but also has a lot of positive and tasty sides, too.