Author Topic: Nick Bates  (Read 32174 times)

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Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Nick Bates
« on: Mar 27, 2009, 12:09 AM »
Today's blog "wearecunard" talks about Captain Nick Bates, who took QM2 to Dubai to visit her lonely sister last Saturday :

http://wearecunard.com/2009/03/2009-world-cruise-dinner-celebration/

Of the several QE2 captains we have been photographed with, Nick Bates was the one we got to know best. He was huge fun, both on Caronia, where we first met him, and on QE2 a year later. You could hear in his voice how fond he was of QE2 -- he was in paradise when he took charge of her.

I find it hard to believe that he was correctly quoted and speaking with his tongue far removed from his cheek, when he apparently said :

Quote
Yesterday we left Dubai having berthed just astern of our famous sister QE2, and like so many of us, all those fond memories of my time there came flooding back. Looking at her as she awaits her new life, I also felt the time had come to move on and look forward to the excitement that hails the new Queen Elizabeth in 2010.

Every day at noon, after the usual shipping report, Nick Bates regaled us either with stories from his book "A Pinch of Salt" (we bought many copies on board -- and in September did the cheeky thing, asking Ian McNaught to sign them for us!), or with quotes from the famous Irish writer Patrick O'Shaughnessy. Excellent quotes, which amused us no end but were equally full of fun and wisdom. Such a pity that I cannot remember even one to write down here... :(

Pia and I scoured the internet when we returned home, looking for books written by Patrick O'Shaughnessy, or even for some biographical details. Patrick O'Shaughnessy -- we all knew the name, but could not find any of his writings. It was most frustrating! And remained a mystery, all these years...

And imagine -- the wearecunard blog today finally gives us a hint of detail, bringing us closer to the famous writer and poet... If you wish to continue relishing the mystery, please do not follow the link  :-X.

While searching around the internet a bit more this afternoon to see whether perhaps in the meantime, Patrick O'Shaughnessy has received a decent write-up, I found instead a copy of much of the book "A Pinch of Salt". Have a look and enjoy it!

http://tinyurl.com/dh7e8j

Nick Bates was pretty much whisked off QE2 in 2005 immediately after we arrived back in Southampton, and we felt immensely upset for him, as he had been told during our cruise. He was, I believe, sent to work on another Carnival ship (would love to get some more details of that and see whether the rumours at the time were right). It is so good to see that he is on QM2 now, and I hope he has many years of happy sailing ahead of him...
« Last Edit: Mar 27, 2009, 12:17 AM by Isabelle Prondzynski »

Offline Chris

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #1 on: Mar 27, 2009, 09:43 AM »
Every day at noon, after the usual shipping report, Nick Bates regaled us either with stories from his book "A Pinch of Salt" (we bought many copies on board -- and in September did the cheeky thing, asking Ian McNaught to sign them for us!), or with quotes from the famous Irish writer Patrick O'Shaughnessy. Excellent quotes, which amused us no end but were equally full of fun and wisdom.

Captain Bates took over command of Queen Mary 2 from Commodore Warner in Hong Kong this year, during our voyage. He continued his noon report tradition giving fantastic readings from "A Pinch of Salt" - one I do remember was...

If you're going to criticise someone, first walk a mile in their shoes - that way, when you criticise them you're a mile away - and you have their shoes!

Brilliant :)
🎥 Check out my QE2 & Cruise Ship Videos: https://www.youtube.com/chrisframeofficial/

Offline Andy F

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #2 on: Apr 02, 2009, 11:09 PM »
I must remember that one!  Bernard Warner was in command when I was aboard last year - nice guy!
Start every day with a smile and get it over with

Offline NomDePlume

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #3 on: Apr 06, 2009, 05:04 AM »
I've got the book! HAD to have it! Captain Bates was in charge of QM2 in January in the Caribbean, and I found the book on sale in the Library. One of my favorite quotes is "I've been told not to repeat this,so I will only say it once"... And what a charmer he is!

Offline Glengavin

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #4 on: Apr 26, 2009, 12:57 PM »
Pleased to hear that Capt Bates is still keeping his passengers amused and making his lunchtime broadcasts not to be missed events.

Latest one: on QM2 on April 1st this year as the ship arrived at Civitavecchia (Rome) he apparently made an early morning announcement advising that, due to the financial crisis hitting Italy, the local currency had changed as from midnight from Euros to a new currency, the Pizza, with five Pizzas to the Euro.  In no time at all the Purser's Desk had a line-up of passengers wanting to change their money!

Online cunardqueen

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #5 on: Apr 26, 2009, 05:31 PM »
He is a great guy not to mention a superb host, I never in my wildest dreams ever expected to receive the invite to his table for the duration of a med cruise, Turns out he knew folks just a coupe of mile away from me. Both he and his partner were a joy to dine with and did genuinely seem to take an interest in their guests.

As we neared Gib the shops/hairdressers ran out of hair spray which was causing the ladies a problem, and inspite of my limp hair l use the stuff to stop giving me the flyaway look, with great effect l hasten to add :-\ and said to the ladies, "Oh you can borrow some of mine" and quick as a flash he responded "Myles YOU use hairspray" with that glint in his eyes, l did offer that he could borrow mine as well but that offer was never taken up. It ended up after we left Gib the ladies found in their cabin a new can of hairspray autgraphed by himself, His partner had been dispatched ashore to pick up the urgent supplies.

  It was a lively table, with much fun to be had, And while every cruise on QE2 is special, this one was just a bit more special. Long after the final sun set or the glimpse of the last port of call or the final meal, the experience of dinning on table 341 was something l will never forget   
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Mauretania1907

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #6 on: Apr 27, 2009, 09:57 AM »
Sorry to say that the wearecunard site reads to me like a Stagecoach company blurb sheet. The good Captain MIGHT have said the weasel words about QE2, but look who pays him.
Also, he might regret QE2's fate, but is being pragmatic. After all, he now commands QMary die Grosse, that has to be a feather in his cap.

Online cunardqueen

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #7 on: Apr 27, 2009, 10:35 AM »
Im afraid l too also fine the wearecunard site just one long company public relations stunt, if somebody dared even go off the official point of view, would they publish it? Im sure all the officers have a private point of view regarding QE2, but would they dare put it into print? Isnt this the same cruise director who told advised passengers what to put on the comment cards?
 Its the same as the World club magazine, its nothing more than a hyped up brochure full of sales pitch and really doesnt contain any news! Heck if anybody remembers the Cunard Ann Bright Club of old she sent a news letter out ever month to the 5000 members and it was full of news etc and if space permitted she might mention an offer on a cruise.   Now that was a club !!!
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Andy F

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #8 on: Apr 28, 2009, 12:02 AM »
Im afraid l too also fine the wearecunard site just one long company public relations stunt...
Would you really expect it to be anything else though Myles tbh?  It's innocuous, hardly likely to contain anything even mildly contentious and as you say, purely a PR exercise but hey, what's wrong with that? 

Loved your recollection about the hairspray though lol.  Great one!
« Last Edit: May 03, 2009, 11:40 AM by Andy F »
Start every day with a smile and get it over with

Offline Malcolm

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2009, 07:10 PM »
Isnt this the same cruise director who told advised passengers what to put on the comment cards?

It was David Pepper who did tell people what to put and not to mark the entire cruise staff down just because the Cruise Director was a w*****!

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #10 on: Dec 17, 2009, 10:25 PM »
Since I have just leafed once again through Nick Bates's delightful With a Pinch of Salt (autographed with a wide grin by Ian McNaught on QE2 in September 2008), I would really like to quote this wonderful essay, which was

Written by a 10-year-old American schoolboy and published in the newsletter of the Society of Marine Port Engineers of New York NY Inc.

Quote
Why I want to be a captain

I want to be a captain when I grow up because it’s a funny job and easy to do. Captains don’t need much school education, they just have to learn numbers so they can read the instruments. I guess they should be able to read maps so they don’t get lost.

Captains have to be brave so they won’t be scared if it’s foggy and they can’t see, or if a propeller falls off they should stay calm so they will know what to do. Captains have to have eyes to see through the clouds and they can’t be afraid of thunder or lightning because they are closer to them than we are. The salary that captains make is another thing I like. They make more than they can spend. This is because most people think that captaining a ship is dangerous -- except captains, because they know how easy it is.
 
There isn’t much I don’t like, except girls like captains and all the girls want to marry captains, so they always have to chase them away so they won’t bother them. I hope that I don’t get seasick, because I get carsick and if I get seasick I could not be a captain and then I would have to go out to work.

Nick Bates adds : Pretty well sums it up

It was the last of the mid-day stories from his book which he told us on QE2 in 2005, the day before our return to Southampton. Happy memories...   ;D

Offline singlemalt

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #11 on: Dec 18, 2009, 10:23 PM »
Isabelle you've just made me laugh out loud with this!

Onboard Boudicca in August, the Captain read this during his 'Welcome Aboard' Cocktail Party in a marvellous Norwegian accent and it did make all the old dears chuckle.

Shame he didn't own up to where his 'inspiration' came from....... we were left with the impression that it was one of his own literary offerings.

Cheeky sod!   ;)
Wearer of swishy skirts and fab heels; otherwise known as the Cruise Director

Online cunardqueen

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #12 on: Jan 19, 2010, 07:22 PM »
Just watching some DVDs of the Love Boat, Is it me or does Captain Merrill Stubing  bear an uncanny resemblance to a certain QE2 Captain..... :-\
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Twynkle

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #13 on: Jan 24, 2010, 11:15 PM »
 A Conversation with Captain Bates
http://www.beyondships.com/QM2-art-Bates.html
[Unfortunately there's some over-writing half way down the page]

Offline Chris

Re: Nick Bates
« Reply #14 on: Apr 25, 2010, 11:40 AM »
I hear through the rumour mill that Nick Bates (and Paul Wright) are set to retire soon.
🎥 Check out my QE2 & Cruise Ship Videos: https://www.youtube.com/chrisframeofficial/