Adverts only show for non-members



Author Topic: Maggie O'Donnell, QE2 Casino girl 1981-1983  (Read 18584 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Maggie O'Donnell, QE2 Casino girl 1981-1983
« on: Feb 06, 2012, 12:20 AM »
Hi,
My name is Maggie O'Donnell and I worked in the Casino on and off from 1981 - 1983... I still have many friends I made onboard from those hazy, crazy days... lots of great times and brilliant people...with fantastic memories  :)

« Last Edit: Jan 10, 2014, 07:49 PM by Alan Snelson »

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #1 on: Feb 06, 2012, 12:26 AM »
Hello Maggie, and welcome to the Forum!

Enjoy the excellent company of so many QE2 fans here, and the memories of your time on board.

We would love to hear something of your time as a casino girl -- there must be many stories to tell :) ...

Have a look around, you may meet up with some old colleagues again, and come across some stories from your time on QE2.

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #2 on: Feb 06, 2012, 12:30 AM »
world cruise - cocktail  party

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #3 on: Feb 06, 2012, 12:37 AM »
I was one of the lucky casino staff to be on there before the Falklands, and also did the maiden voyage after... plus when Alan Whicker was on there making his film... the maiden voyage to Philadelphia.. plus many, many more..
Always remember Casino barmen, Kevin McGee, another Kevin, Omar, Benji and Peter Wordley..just so many names and people to remember... the scouse barmen crew who looked after us !!! and the whole upstairs, downstairs environment was a blast.
As Casino staff you were not supposed to socialise with crew.. but of course we all did... looking back at my photos I just can't remember how all those people used to fit into our cabins for the numerous parties... if those cabins could talk LOL !!!!

Pat Curry

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #4 on: Feb 06, 2012, 09:20 AM »
world cruise - cocktail  party

Welcome aboard Maggie.  You will enjoy this forum.

Looking forward to your memories.  Casino Crew was about sixteen if I recall. Quite a responsibility, I would think. 

Great photos.  Get the hair  :o   

Which one is you?

Offline Barrie Evans

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #5 on: Feb 06, 2012, 09:54 AM »
Welcome aboard Maggie.  You will enjoy this forum.

Looking forward to your memories.  Casino Crew was about sixteen if I recall. Quite a responsibility, I would think. 

Great photos.  Get the hair  :o   

Which one is you?
;D Hi Maggie. Welcome "Back on board". I have to say that its has to be "Odds On" that you are going to have lots of very interesting stories for us, with all your memories, and lets hope you get some contact from your fellow crew members  ;D Im sure that you will enjoy the friendship with our forum, and that you will also make some new friends.
Barrie
 

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #6 on: Feb 06, 2012, 10:30 AM »
Welcome to the Forum Maggie. Looking forward to hearing more of your stories.  :)
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
www.qe2event.com

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #7 on: Feb 06, 2012, 02:56 PM »
This is me... doing one of the shake and grins...


Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #8 on: Feb 06, 2012, 03:07 PM »
Hi ...

Top photo I am second on left... so posted pic below just of me... my hair goes through various stages in the 80's.. it's a scream.. the make is a killer as well... but absolutely crazy days.. often remember finishing a night shift - bearing in mind we could'nt close until last (big money) punter went... going down to 5 deck my cabin was 5054... and there would be parties just randomly going on everywhere.. people in all sorts..
We had passenger status and in those days never had to work the ports, was illigal... so all in all had the best of both worlds.
Saying that some people who came on just couldn't hack the pace, of work hard and play hard... not us though... getting paid to be on such a fantastic icon... and travel the world..
For me it was the people who made it... some of the passengers were great but unfortunately working in a casino you don't always get the better side of people... but overall it was great.

I remember once we were in St Thomas having a party on Megans Bay Beach... passed out - got sunstroke and nearly missed the ship.... Oh! happy days... still had to go to work.. ankles all bandaged up after I'd had a shot ( you know where ) from the doctor..and everythime we would go on a break.. one particular barman would say.. ' special orange juice'  Maggie... umm I'd say... you'd get to the break room - and of course it would have a large vodka in it.. :)
More stories to follow....

Online Twynkle

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #9 on: Feb 06, 2012, 05:58 PM »
Hi Maggie - and Welcome!

It's great that you have joined us - Thank you for posting!

So - about those truly glam photos - it looks as if the Casino was definitely the place to be!
Love the Big hair - I wonder whether (when on duty), you had to wear a sort of uniform from the start of your time on board?
And during times at sea, when the Casino was quiet / closed, did you have to go and fill in duties in other Hotel Departments?
(Casino staff of the current Cunarders look very formal now - almost like the head waiting staff!)

Have you had time to have a look in the Search window for fellow crew-mates?
Here's another place that'll make you feel at home (or not ;), as the case may be!!)
https://www.theqe2story.com/forum/index.php/topic,330.0.html
It seems a much quieter topic than some - it would be great to hear more!
All the best
Rosie

QE2 had been waiting alongside in Dubai for nearly 12 years.  Please restore her Lifeboats and Tenders to where they truly belong - she looks naked without them - please spare her this ignominy.

Offline Louis De Sousa

  • QE2 Crew member
  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 3830
  • Total likes: 3750
  • QE2 The Greatest Ship Ever
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #10 on: Feb 07, 2012, 08:21 AM »
Welcome onboard Maggie

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #11 on: Feb 07, 2012, 11:09 PM »
Welcome to the forum Maggie. When I was on board the Casino girls were usually great fun. Magical Maggie? Gilly Patterson?

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #12 on: Feb 09, 2012, 03:27 PM »
Hi maggie, If you were on board from 81' then I probably served you..my names peter and I looked after the casino staff in the restaurant.
It was great looking after you lot as you never came down for breakfast ,so we had an easy ride. I also remember cabin 5054 as I went to many a party there , I remember one morning about 7.30am as I was walking past on my way to do breakfast there was a party in full swing .I was spotted by the girls and dragged into the party ,a large vodka was thrust into my hands (vodka for breakfast !) and I was expected to join in !!
some great girls there and great times . peter
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #13 on: Feb 09, 2012, 04:13 PM »
Hi Peter,

Lovely to hear from you.. maybe you can put up some photos.. I remember so many names, far too many to list.. eveeryone loved looking after us lot.. as you say, never ever went to breakfast think I only made it once after a party in the three years.
Could'nt tell you what lunch was all about.. I know some of the slot techs used to go (boring)... but you guys were always such a laugh and of course you all had the added bonus of being invited to our parties, funnily enough everytime I went on I always had 5054 or 5052...you will have to give me some names you worked with.. and I am sure I will know them.
Happy crazy days...and some of the people I met on there are still my friends today..
I always remember our parties they were madness, you would have everyone and anyone.. I've got some great photos of some very wealthy passengers at our parties who got very drunk (surprised for casino parties - I bet !) and don't ask how or why ended up wearing our casino dresses and shower caps.. just anything happened... bodies always everywhere..but all just harmless good fun, special, special people on a very special ship that will always hold a big place in my heart...

I stayed in Casinos up until about ten years ago..did very well and worked in many countries.. what about you ?

Lovely to catch up   :)

Online Peter Mugridge

  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 3122
  • Total likes: 2137
  • At Mach 2 three days after being on QE2...
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #14 on: Feb 09, 2012, 09:27 PM »
Hey!  That's next door to the cabin we had on honeymoon - 5050! :)

That was a bit later on, though, in 2002....
"It is a capital mistake to allow any mechanical object to realise that you are in a hurry!"

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #15 on: Feb 10, 2012, 01:22 AM »
Hey Peter

I bet the cabins were very different in 2002.... at least you know they were always happy cabins..

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #16 on: Feb 10, 2012, 05:28 PM »
Hello again maggie, I made some great friends with some of the girls on board ,one in particular was a girl called kim sealy ....an abosutely gorgeous girl from ilford , a west ham nut with whom I went the match when liverpool played there. stayed at her house a few times .also a girl called jenny although she prefered to be known as jay (she looked like kate bush) and I definitely had a thing for (and with ) her. other names ...babs fusaro, a great girl called sandy who's nickname for some unkown reason was 'worm' ..yvonne pitch , yvonne hall ...a slot tech called geoff ..I can see loads of faces but the names have faded .but one thing is for sure we all had a ball.
I left the ship in 82 but stayed in the merchant navy till 88...now I'm a head chef at a gastro pub in rural cheshire . x peter
peter

Pat Curry

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #17 on: Feb 10, 2012, 06:34 PM »
I made some great friends with some of the girls on board ... now I'm a head chef at a gastro pub in rural cheshire . x peter
Hmm, Nice one Peter ;)  What is the name of the gastro pub where are you cheffing?

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #18 on: Feb 11, 2012, 12:30 AM »
Hi Peter,

Must have crossed each others paths at some stage... because all of the girls you have mentioned I know and have worked with. As for Jay she is one of my closest friends to this day... she is married and has been living in Australia for years.. never had any children..  did a few trips with Geoff myself.. was an OK guy.  As for Babs Fusaro andother very good friend of mine, she lives in Derbyshire now and has a farm with her partner.... all of these girls have long since left the business... but were great girls
I worked a lot with Babs and Jay, and also did many cruises working with Babs on the QE2... I will put up a photo of us..

Sounds like you have done well for yourself.. and Cheshire is a lovely part of the world.. I have many friends from you hometown..
last time I was in Liverpool hardly recognised it... the docks has changed so much... but a great place.

Check out the top two photos... Babs is in both of them... :)
« Last Edit: Feb 11, 2012, 12:37 AM by Casinogirls »

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #19 on: Feb 11, 2012, 12:06 PM »
hi again maggie, what a small world eh , I thought I recognised babs in those pics ...what a great laugh she was , she would sometimes come down to my cabin or the crew bar for a drink .always up for a laugh.
Kim seally went to live in oz too..she married one of the waiters of the Qe2 .......good to hear that the girls are all doing well . :)
peter

Online Bob C.

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #20 on: Feb 12, 2012, 03:12 AM »
Welcome Magige.  Its great to have yet another "old school" QE2 fan!

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #21 on: Feb 13, 2012, 02:19 PM »
Hi Bob...

Thanks for that... it's funny the QE2 is such a special club of people, who either worked, travelled or visited the wonderful lady....it just holds such special memories for so many of us.. unless you have truly experienced the ship and of course the people onboard who always made it so special... no one else really understands.

These years working onboard and the friends I made until this day shall always hold a special place in my heart.

As Casino girls, as I said before in those days, we had the best of both worlds... and for many of us we truly took advantage of that... we worked hard.. even though it doesn't seem so.. especially in the Caribbean.. three shifts a day and sometimes not finishing until the butt crack of dawn.

Every cruise was different, the Med cruises were my least favourite.. World Cruises for us were a doddle... but loved all of them and some of the most interesting characters ever...plus all the famous people..

I have never done a cruise since... crazy that... maybe this year I will go to Florida and pick up a cruise for myself.. happy days  :)

Online Bob C.

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #22 on: Feb 13, 2012, 10:00 PM »
I never had the opportunity to gamble at the casino onboard QE2.  I was 6, 9, 11, 14 and 16 the times that I went ('69-'79) although I do remember dropping in a quarter or two in the slot machines at 14 and 16, maybe as early as 11!

I highly recommend jumping on a cruise ship out of Florida or anywere for that matter.  All the lines have something for everyone (Royal Caribbean is my favorite though).  Best of all, you will finally get to see all that the passengers saw while you were working! 
« Last Edit: Feb 15, 2012, 03:40 AM by Bob C. »

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #23 on: Feb 13, 2012, 10:12 PM »
Fascinated by your story and your memories, Maggie -- great to have you among us!

How did your QE2 life begin, I wonder?

How did you get the job on the ship, and what were your first impressions when you stepped on board?

Online Peter Mugridge

  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 3122
  • Total likes: 2137
  • At Mach 2 three days after being on QE2...
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #24 on: Feb 13, 2012, 10:40 PM »
May I ask why the Med cruises were your least favourite?

And I have to ask - did you enjoy the famous winter Atlantics?
« Last Edit: Feb 13, 2012, 10:54 PM by Peter Mugridge »
"It is a capital mistake to allow any mechanical object to realise that you are in a hurry!"

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #25 on: Feb 13, 2012, 10:53 PM »
I think I can asnwer that ..maggie probably disliked the med cruises for the same reason as most of the crew .....................it was full of BRITS ! never did I  get to dislike my own kind as much as the british on board . they were the most picky ,fussy downright rude ,arrogant and ignorant punters I ever served .
the attitude of the majority was that because we were crew then we were beneath them . Inverted snobbery at its worst.
Suddenly the  blackpool landlady was a duchess and the landlord from birmingham was a baron !
and ...they were probably the worst tippers as well . OK I'ved calmed down now , maybe maggie has a different reason .
« Last Edit: Feb 13, 2012, 10:55 PM by peter ward »
peter

Online Peter Mugridge

  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 3122
  • Total likes: 2137
  • At Mach 2 three days after being on QE2...
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #26 on: Feb 13, 2012, 10:55 PM »
I blame the modern education system...



Once upon a time the British knew how to behave anywhere in the World.
"It is a capital mistake to allow any mechanical object to realise that you are in a hurry!"

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #27 on: Feb 14, 2012, 02:49 PM »
Oh Peter..
I am so rolling around laughing.. as you very kindly hit the nail on the head.... shame as it might be but the Med cruises were full of British who just had not a clue... women were mutton dressed as lamb... and the men were just dragged around on a lead.
There was never any fun or atmosphere and certainly there didn't have a clue how to gamble.
If they did you'd be lucky if they would grace you with a conversation... let alone a tip...of course there might of been the odd one who was Ok... but overall we loathed the Med cruises because as Peter states... they looked down on us.

When you would go ashore and there would be lunch... imagine they would all be rushing back to get their quota.. never mind where we were... and probably putting the leftovers..in tupperware boxes.. LOL !!!!

But then again I suppose in hindsight that is what made it different....

As, for how I started my life on the QE2... we worked for a company called London Clubs and we were a concession onboard.
You were selected from 5 Casino's in those days (if you were lucky enough to ever go)... and got the chance to work onboard various Cunard lines... I was extrememly lucky and was chosen for over three years...happy days  :)

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #28 on: Feb 14, 2012, 04:04 PM »
You're so right maggie, it didn't matter which exotic port we would be in the brits would pile back in their hundreds to get their lunch (because they'd paid for it ) and yes ,they would take food to take back ashore as they didn't want to eat (all that foreign muck!) .that is if they didn't stay for afternoon tea !
the Carribean cruises were SOO different as the americans knew how to cruise and let their hair down .shame on you class ridden we are better than you brits !!
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #29 on: Feb 14, 2012, 04:43 PM »
Peter... so true.. I once had a British Passenger on a Med cruise ask me what I did for a proper job at home... and inevitably the first thing they would ask was where you came from... like if we gave a stuff.. people were people, working in Casino's just like catering or any form of dealing with the public you very quickly learn how to deal with people at all levels... and normally like the saying goes... treat people like you like to be treated yourself...

Bob... the Winter Atlantic crossings.. as I am sure Peter will support me in saying were a different kind of challenge..
very, very busy... to the point of sometimes hectic... absolutely great laughs, and great people... full of all sorts of characters..
the weather of course would ultimately throw a spanner in the works along the way... especially when we hit gale force weather conditions... we loved it.. as we had our sea legs... and I am sorry to say... but while the passengers were vomiting all over the place and fleeing to bed... we were so happy because this meant no punters = shut casino = off to disco, meet at the crew bars, have a party, go to the wardroom... many options...
But when it was busy in the Casino... it was crazy... I mean madness.. but just such a scream....
Every theme and every day was different.. had some great St.Patricks days either onboard or in the States.. celebrated about every day there was going...never missed an opportunity for fancy dress.. and too be honest I only ever once had a row with someone... and she worked in the Casino..I have endless stories I could tell.. endless.. ;D

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #30 on: Feb 14, 2012, 05:24 PM »
Happy days.. ;D

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #31 on: Feb 14, 2012, 06:51 PM »
I wonder whether you might have met this Casino Concessionnaire?

https://www.theqe2story.com/forum/index.php/topic,3189.0.html

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #32 on: Feb 14, 2012, 11:08 PM »
Don't say I do... but I sent them a message..we usually always know someone... Thanks for the link  :)

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #33 on: Feb 15, 2012, 05:13 PM »
Oh yes the Atlantic crossings, now that was hard work.
you inevitably came across inclement weather at some point (and sometimes all the way) and that was a welcome relief as a lot of the punters would stay in their cabins .we of course were not affected so we enjoyed the storms. the windows in the T.O.W restaurant were almost from the deck to the deckhead (floor to ceiling) and when the ship was in a bad one you could look out of the port window and just see sky and the starboard window you would just see water then vice versa ..ever tried serving soup in a force 9? 
But usually it was busy ..two sittings of 16 for breakfast (pre looking after the casino girls) lunch and dinner ..you had an hour and a half from taking the food order to serving three to four courses , getting everyone out ,relaying the tables and letting the second sitting in ! not easy. the only plus westbound was the hour back every night .extra hour in the crew bar .
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #34 on: Feb 16, 2012, 12:36 AM »
Do you remember once we hit a gale force 10... and that was something else... the whole  of the casino was up rooted.. and as you say Peter... we were just literally rolling from side to side... one minute you saw the sea and the next minute the sky... but we never felt in danger of any kind.... of course there were a few incidents onboard... like getting stuck in the bank when going into Barbados...

Hey... do you remember those ' no where ' cruises we used to do.. We would pick up in New York.. go out and sail around in a circle ... or just sail out and come back in three days... boy Oh! boy they were wild cruises... it was I think before we used to start the world cruises and they were these so called cheap ' come on the QE2 ' events... and I just met some crazy people in the Casino on those.  When we used to be going into dinner.. they were already packed sitting waiting at the tables for the casino to open... and some of the women ... well !....never seen such long nails and bling...( Oh well except the world cruise )....but that was very expensive..bling !!

Love to go back and do it all again... if only I could bring the same people, parties with the printers, out dancing with the TOW guys, all the amazing countries we have been to and things we have done... we have all been truly blessed... ;D

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #35 on: Feb 16, 2012, 10:55 AM »
If I remember rightly maggie those cruises were just after we had come out of dry dock in new york and I think they were a way of testing the engines and making a few bucks as well.
The 'clientelle' probably couldn't afford  a full cruise so this was their chance to get on board .saying that though they were the best punters we ever served ,every single one of them was up for a laugh and just so pleased to be on board .most of the punters were black new yorkers and the bling was dripping off them !And ....could they dance ...I've never seen such rhythm from the kids to the elderly ,there was so much rhythm on board the ship was moving whilst we were still tied up !! fantastic ,we would sail outbound for a day and a half ,turn round and come back ....but those cruises were the best !thanks for reminding me of them maggie . Do you remember the bar/restaurant in fort lauderdale just off the quay with a ww11 jeep outside were eveyone used to go ? the croupiiers were ALWAYS in there ...what a great job you lot had ...always closed in port !!
peter

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #36 on: Feb 16, 2012, 11:46 AM »
I am really enjoying this conversation. Just keep talking... it is such fun to imagine those scenes!

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #37 on: Feb 16, 2012, 05:02 PM »
Hey... I agree those punters were great.. we loved it as they were proper gamblers.. and they looked after us well... as for the bar in Fort Lauderdale.. I have some photos somewhere taken there... and listen as you well know casino staff.. were always at every bar in every port... some of favourite were the Anchor bar in New York (gone now)... St. Thomas and I can't remember whether it was San Juan.. or somewhere else where they served the best chilli you could find.
Some dodgy places... South America.. especially Columbia and Cristobel... not nice...
I know we had one of the best jobs on there.. but the funny thing is we were not supposed to hang around with crew.. but of course they were some of our best friends.
I remember being in a bar with Babs and Debbie.. in Cristobel.. it was very dark inside, I mean very dark.. when we ordered a beer.. saw some of the guys from the ship in there... cannot describe what we were witnessing....when the owner (women) comes over and asks if we are in there to take her trade (men)... well ! I nearly choked on my beer... and you couldn't get a bus ticket between us.. then the door flys open.. one of the cruise staff guys runs in screaming... someones been shot... and all we could hear was gun fire outside... ( no one we knew )...
I swear we got out of there and legged it back to the ship.... I thought .. bloody hell, no one is going to believe this back home it's like the high chapperal... LOL !!!!
Like I said crazy days... :)

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #38 on: Feb 16, 2012, 06:55 PM »
yes there were some dodgy places ,like the texas bar in rio....a steward went ashore in rio and was met at the gate by a load of admiring females (local ladies of the night )and they virtually carried him across to the bar ,it was only when he ordered a beer and went to pay did he realise that the 'ladies' had used a razor on his jeans pocket and cut out his wallet! also his gold chains had gone and watch also,that was a dear do and he didn't even have sex with any of them !...you just didn't wear your bling in places like that !!
other notable bars (why do we know all the bars in the world ) hey sounds like a scene from 'Casablanca' ....what about Ned kelly's in hong kong , the rose and crown in Hawaii, the coach and horses in bermuda ...the texas bar in lisbon ...but the best by far was the Anchor bar in new york ..everybody ended up in there .
Back in the uk in the mid to late seventies you couldn't get a cold bottle of beer to save your life .in the anchor bar they had big plastic bins full  of ice and heineken or buds ...heaven .
I always thought jay was a bit aloof when serving her till I bumped into her in the anchor ...she had had a few and we got on like a house on fire .
I've seen guy's stagger out of there and go back to the ship and serve dinner !! god knows how . ;)
« Last Edit: Feb 16, 2012, 06:58 PM by peter ward »
peter

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #39 on: Feb 16, 2012, 11:21 PM »
Maggie, did you ever meet up with Gilly Patterson and Magical Maggie? Magical married an Engineer and ended up as a Chief Engineers wife.
AND what happened to the Anchor BAr?
Best chilli in ST. Thomas was just across from where the launches berthed, can't for the life of me remember what it was called now!

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #40 on: Feb 17, 2012, 01:59 AM »
Peter and Rod... yes it was St.Thomas had the best chilli.. I knew Jilly from working back in London.. but unless you know Maggie's surname not sure... unfortunately... like working on the ships - Casino people just move around all the time and it becomes like one big family.. eventually you bump into someone who knows someone you know... but where the rest end up god only knows..

As for knowing all the bars...it's so true (laughing)...I mean looking back - we had a few narrow escapes.. nearly missed the ship once...and quite often we were wasted going into work...infact sometimes it was one lon continuous work, party - dock - bars - back onboard - cocktail parties ( I loved them )... Captains cocktail parties, any party.. we were there.. I remember being in the Anchor Bar and they were playing eye of the tiger.. or somthing like that.. and people were just getting up on the bar and dancing... St.Patricks day in Boston... is a bit of a haze.. ( my family are irish ).... say no more !!!

A waiter once got in a taxi in Colombia... he drove him round the corner, cop got in... put a gun to his head and said give me your wallet, etc... robbed him ... and dumped him in the street... thank god he never got shot... crazy shit !!!

As for the Anchor Bar - they have knocked it down.. sad.. but I am sure lots of places have changed..more stories please.. I have got plenty more.

Do you remember those horrible kids that used to come on at Christmas.. spoilt and rude... always threw them out of the Casino...

How about Thailand then... was onboard when Alan Whicker made the film... you must have some tales from there - I certainly do..  ;D

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #41 on: Feb 17, 2012, 10:11 AM »
Sparkies in St. Thomas

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #42 on: Feb 17, 2012, 10:43 AM »
First time I went to Pattaya .........couldn't believe it ! just one long street with bars ,restaurants whorehouses all the way along one side and then back on the other (I think it was built for the american troops for R&R from vietnam )we went into a nightclub and there was a live band on , we were chatting to the local ladies (I think they were ladies !)when the music stopped and the dance floor was cleared and a boxing ring was dragged out onto it .
then two guys came out and had a thai boxing match ,proceeded to knock hell out of each other for three rounds then boxiing ring was removed and dancing recomenced ......absolutely insane ! one young commi waiter hired a powerful motorbike and proceeded to drive thru a restaurant window !
Unfortunately I had left when alan whicker did his programme but I knew all the lads in fact I believe there were some divorces after the film of the boys ashore in Pattaya ..happy days eh . :-*
« Last Edit: Feb 17, 2012, 10:46 AM by peter ward »
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #43 on: Feb 19, 2012, 12:10 AM »
Rod.... thank you... sparkies... that was the name....great place and amazing chilli... Oh! spent many times in there.. and

Peter...

Thailand was a very, very crazy place... I remember the crew having to watch a video about the dangers of Pattaya... and all the various diseases etc... and scams etc that could happen in such a place... also people saying to us..Oh! when you get to Pattaya you girls won't have a look in... and they were right... it was unreal... like you said one great big main street full of everything and anything you wanted.... women who were drop dead gorgeous... only to find out they were men... and all sorts of going on's right in front of your eyes...

Young and old men from various ships.. getting into trouble... mostly being ripped off with scooters etec... too much drink and women.. a lethal combination for some... and the Alan Whicker show didn't help that year as you said..
We hired motobikes and went to Puket.. which then had one bar... and nothing else... I hear today that Pattaya and Puket are one long continuous stretch of seedy bars and row upon row of loud music and anything else you want...
When we were there once an American Naval ship came in and it was madness... anyone who is ignorant enough to think AIDS was a gay thing... should have worked on the ships in the 80's and it would have certainly opened their eyes to a thing or two..

some of it was just crazy stuff...but hey happy days  ;D

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #44 on: Feb 21, 2012, 01:31 PM »
Don't know about you maggie but one of the best ports of call was Hong Kong .
four days in port , and most of the punters would be off on a coach trip to see the great wall. So ,that meant not many people left on board to look after so we would say work breakfast then have lunch and dinner off or work dinner and haver breakfast and lunch off (you lot had the four days off !) .so we got to see some of the sites , but I loved the night market in Nathan road ,absolutely fantastic then up to ned kelly's bar for some beers and live music .
They had a stage and a house band but some of the musicians from the joe loss band would go there and get up and jam with the band ..brilliant !stagger out in the early hours and get a rickshaw  back to the ship ...on other days the ships football team would play against the army barracks ( I think they were the royal ordinance corps)  and that entailed back to the naffi for a good old booze up .........god I miss Hong Kong !
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #45 on: Feb 21, 2012, 11:00 PM »
Peter... the problem is that everytime I think about my favourite place.. I just hop from one place to another .. as so many have special  memories...  like you Hong Kong was amazing.. the shopping, the floating restaurants.. the night market was something else... and then the bars... we all went to Ned Kelly's one night and too be honest I woke up the next day not remembering a thing.... but in those days everyone took care of you...and I never felt unsafe.. ( only in South America )..
Another place was Singapore.. do you remember Change Alley.. I heard it's not there anymore.. we were so lucky to have all the ports off.. I have heard it's not like that now.. but then again is anything..


I also had some great times in Barbados... when we did the midnight launches... and everyone would get off and carry crates load of booze.. sown to Paradise Beach.. and just party the nght away.... I never could imagine how you guys did it.. and always turned in for work..
When we use to have parties in our cabins the guys would wait until we finished work come to the parties.. and go straight to work serving breakfast still half cut.. Oh!  what laughs... and what bloody stamina we had.. for working hard and playing hard.

That's why my brain probably still thinks I am 35..  LOL !!!

No wonder my nephews still call me mad Aunty Marge... at least we have enjoyed life and have had some amazing experiences
and too be honest I am still wanting to go and travel.. it never leaves you..the best form of educattion anyone can get... Oh! such happy days  ;D

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #46 on: Feb 22, 2012, 04:32 PM »
Oh yes I loved Barbados .We would dock at about 11pm and it would be off to paradise beach with a coolbox full of beer/wine and ice ...a beatbox with loads of batteries ,flip flops and bermuda shorts!
party till it got  light then stagger back to the ship with your hair full of sand ,quick shower then up to the restaurant ! How the hell we got thru the day ....mind you we didn't have to worry to much about breakfast unless we bumped into a few drunken croupiers on the beach who would threaten to come in for breakfast (they never did ).
Nowadays if I have a few drinks at night I can't get out of bed the next day !! you know I'd forgotten all about paradise beach....I remember the hotel bar led onto the beach and once we got told off by security for being to loud for the guests and to cool it or we would be 'escorted out' ..great fun  ;)
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #47 on: Feb 22, 2012, 11:21 PM »
Bob Marley blasting out of the beat box... just all these little parties going on up and down the beach...getting so wasted.. came back once... and woke up in bed still in bikini... covered in sand... all in my hair, mouth.. just everywhere....the caribbean was a magical place... loved it all... another great place was St.Thomas. Megans Bay.. great rum punch... Calabash beach in Grenada..
Do you remember that hotel in Acapulco... The Princess... did para gliding on there... now I get nervous if I climb up a ladder..

Gibralter... and the nice monkeys (joke)...lisbon... what was that all about... we went to some strange places in the Med..
hottest place I can remember was the Panama..

Its funny you thought Jay was aloof... as quite a lot of people onboard thought the Casino girls were snobby... but we far from that... maybe a few thought they were somthing and were looking for a rich punter but they were few and far between.

I bought some nice things on my travels... some nice art work... but also some crap !!!  

What about Mother Phillips...he loved us.. and all the old scouse barmen that use to work in the Theatre Bar, Piano Bar... you would order your drinks and cigarettes through them... and of course extras on the side... like crates of champagne.. for cash only and when you came down from work all would be waiting with tea towels  over the top... but it was lots of different people from many places... but you always made sure you kept in with the right people..didn't want my food being edited before it came out LOL !!!

As you say Peter... I cannot drink like that anymore... if I have too much (good) red wine... next day I am hanging.. life has to slow down (a bit)... but doesn't mean you have to stop enjoying good things in life..  ;)




« Last Edit: Feb 27, 2012, 12:01 PM by Casinogirls »

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #48 on: Feb 22, 2012, 11:30 PM »
What alot of people did not realize about Barbados was that ALL the beaches were public. The hotels etc could block access to them, but could not deny the beach to you. If you were "creating a nuisance" the would have to have called the cops to have you removed. All we used to do was find a public access point and walk to where we wanted to go. During busy season sometimes the hotels would shut down to non hotel residents..

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #49 on: Feb 24, 2012, 12:43 AM »
Don't know all about that as we used to just get off and follow everyone else... remember security watching... but that's about all.  I am sure the beach we used to go in Grenada was private... it was right over the other side of the island..

« Last Edit: Feb 27, 2012, 12:02 PM by Casinogirls »

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #50 on: Feb 27, 2012, 07:20 PM »
you know maggie ,All the times we went to st thomas I always seemed to be working .I can remember only once going to the beach ,I think it was lime bay ? but I always got at least an hour aslhore to go to the booze shops and stock up on my supplies ....I used to drink vodka then and you could buy stolichnya vodka for about $5  a bottle !
I do remember sitting on the forward end getting a bit of sun and the sea plane that used to fly low over the bow as it either came in to land (on the water ) or take off!
 
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #51 on: Feb 29, 2012, 01:26 AM »
Hey Peter... all those years onboard and missed Megans Bay.. I slept through a couple of places..used to drink Vodka myself.. all alcohol was cheap..god knows how our livers have survived...loved sunbathing..  could do with some sun now ( anyway )...

what about the midnight buffets...all queing up to get more nose bag.. and the sail away parties...loved them with the steel band leaving the Caribbean.

I have a copy of the Alan Whicker programme as was on there at the time, they were not allowed to film in the Casino or interview any of us, because it was not allowed by the gaming board in those days... which was a shame.. gamblers didn't like the publicity.. like we cared less.

Never been on a cruise since.. often think about it.. but my daughter is always busy.. maybe I'll do one on my own...in the Caribbean.. and see what it all looks like now ..but at least I would a fun punter and not tight with the tips..  ;D




Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #52 on: Mar 01, 2012, 03:48 PM »
One of my favourite stories involves rod stewart .....yes the singer ! He used to travel regularly on the ship (he called one of his albums atlantic crossing after doing a trip ) and my mate terry used to look after him in the queens grill.
At the time he was married to brit eklund (gorgeous) but she wanted to spend the night in the casino and rod got bored , so he  asked terry to take him the crew bar for a drink. So off they went to the two deck pig...this wasn't the fancy castaways bar but the bar were all the old salts drunk . anyway terry sits him down with a load of scousers and belfast lads (we got on great together ) ..the tradition in this pig ,after quite a few scoops was for some one to stand up and give a song so ,it started on rods table ....first guy gets up and belts out a tune then the next ,working round to rod ..then ,out of turn rod stands up and starts to sing and this big irish bedroom steward called paddy mcgee jumps up and shouts ' OI... its my turn sit the f###k down !
whch he did to raucaus laughter ! rod took it in good humour  but I don't think paddy actually knew who he was !!
on another note maggie  , when in singapore did you ever go to Bugis (boogie ) st .got a great story about that ...or the raffles hotel ?
peter

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #53 on: Mar 01, 2012, 11:45 PM »
Bugis Street from what I understand, long a thorn in the side of the Singapore Govenment, was destroyed. Not by the Government originally but by a combination of the US, UK and Australian Navies! Then the gubmint stepped in. Now a good old shopping street I believe!

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #54 on: Mar 02, 2012, 10:18 AM »
What a shame , that den of iniquity was a fantastic place ....like the star wars cantina ...all manner of life going on , almost got killed there once but thats another story !
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #55 on: Mar 02, 2012, 04:18 PM »
I certainly did visit Boogie Street... on more than once... I also heard it had been shut down and that the Singapore government thought it was a poor reflection upon them.. like Rod states.. a bit of a wild place when lots of Navy ships in.. last time I was there it was madness.. of course we loved it.. and I am sure like all of us I have the stories and photos to prove it. (well some)

As for Raffles.. what a lovely place, had to go there and have a few cocktails - went with a few girls from the Casino and shops.. was a beautiful  place.

Peter I love your story about Rod Stewart.. really funny and if you think how many famous people we have probably met between us over the years, on land and ship for me... it never phases me in the slightest... love all the funny stories..

Intrigued about your last comment...but then again I attract the nutter even when working in Casino's on land.. I could tell you a few stories.. hey ! at least life has never been dull..


Did you ever go to Papa New Guinea.. saw a witch doctor in full dress in a shop whilst there.. bit spooky..

More funny stories please Peter.. check out my FB page.. got more photos of QE2 on there (if you can find me)..LOL !!

Offline peter ward

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #56 on: Mar 05, 2012, 01:00 PM »
Raffles was like going back in time ,like the last days of the empire. We went inside and it was how you would expect it to be at the turn of the last century , big old whicker chairs  and waiters in white jackets with cloths over their arms and crusty old colonel types reading the sunday times with panama style hats on  ! Had a few singapore slings there (I do believe thats where they were invented).
Anyway that near death experience in Bugis st  ....well it might be a slight exaggeration but it felt like it at the time.....
We all went up to Bugis st and it was in full swing ,the royal navy were in town so there were a lot of matelots around .Also there was about 15-20 australian soldiers too , I got talking to a few of the aussies early in the night and they were telling me that they had just done 6 weeks survival training and this was their first night back and they were out to get blasted !
they seemed ok and were all having a laugh.
 several hours later though the mood had changed ,especially for one aussie with whom I had been talking ( a mountian of a man )a lot worse for drink ...thought  that a bunch of sailors were laughing at him ..anyway to cut it short  I (stupidly) went over to diffuse the situation when he turned on me ,mouth foaming and pulled a knife on me ...I tried to calm him down but he was having none of it and all the matelots had jumped up and so had all the aussies .......it was all about to kick off (with me on the end of a knife) when ,as in all the movies the cavalry arrived ......a jeep flew round the corner ,someone must've informed the authorities and out jumped two royal navy MP's  a marine MP and an aussie MP followed by a van .the MP's waded in grabbed the soldier with the knife and a few others ,threw them in the van told us in no uncertain terms to go back to my ship and dissappeared into the night ! phew ..that was Bugis street
« Last Edit: Mar 06, 2012, 01:58 PM by peter ward »
peter

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #57 on: Mar 05, 2012, 05:55 PM »
what an amazing story..all in the day of our lives.. bet you were thinking about what could of happened....thankfully I never encountered an experience like that whilst working on the ships..

Loved Raffles.. like you say.. was like stepping back in time and culture.. wish I could do it all over again.... we have been very lucky with all our travels..I love to travel.. anywhere ( Ok within reason)....

Boogie street was a bit mad... and I could see with all the alpha males and alcohol going on equals in many places a disaster !!

I witnessed something similar in Pattaya.. lots of Navy/Army ships in.. then a huge American Navy ship arrives.. you know what that place was like... and by the early hours of the morning everyone was trying to kill each other.. what they didn't realise was how nippy those little Thai fellows ( well I think fellows ) !  were....

Those days were amazing, so carefree and to think we visited countries that in those days were so remote and what people back home dreamed of visiting if they won the pools (in those days ).. happy days  :)

Did you recognise anyone in my photos... ?  sent you a message on there... ps: loved your website ... what a gift.

Did you ever go to Alaska ?....
« Last Edit: Mar 05, 2012, 06:05 PM by Casinogirls »

Offline Alan Snelson

  • Global Moderator
  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 1132
  • Total likes: 828
  • Ships Photographer '78 - '82
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #58 on: Mar 19, 2013, 07:56 PM »
I know this is an old topic now but I recognise at least one of the girls in one photo. I was a photographer from 79 to 82 so our paths might have crossed. I was in cabin 5004 in 1981 but in earlier years was in a cabin surrounded by casino staff I think it was 5042 or 5048. Have attached an even earlier pic of  some of the casino girls with myself and Steve Dean (another photographer) afraid I don't remember any of the girls names now.
Don't just be part of her past, be part of her history!

Offline Rob Lightbody

  • Administrator
  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 10941
  • Total likes: 10974
  • Helping to Keep The Legend Alive
    • Rob Lightbody dot com
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #59 on: Mar 19, 2013, 08:06 PM »
I know this is an old topic now

We really encourage digging up old topics on this forum, that's the whole point of it!!  Thanks :)
Passionate about QE2's service life for 35 years and creator of this website.

MARIA

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #60 on: Mar 24, 2013, 07:20 PM »
hi guys - i am crying with joy looking at your post - i was one of the female crew working in the queens room and then on 5 deck as cabin crew- looking after the casino guys in the 80s -with Alan Barnet a lovely guy we worked from the pantry by your cabins- so i know all the things that went on - hahaha - i had a fab time with all of the guys and girls... getting them up and putting them to bed - hahaha. i was on the ship from 1981 till 1987 - life was a blast most of the time x we worked hard and played hard ... i still live by this to day... love Maria xx

Casinogirls

  • Guest
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #61 on: Apr 25, 2013, 09:12 PM »
Hi Alan

Dont recognise any of the Casino staff... but as we were all selected from different clubs it doesn't mean that we would know everyone anyway !  I was on there from 81 - 83... and Maria .... Alan Barnett and Martin were our bedroom stewards for two of those years... our cabin was 5054 and Gordon Gushee was next door to us !!...

Happy days !  photographers were, Paul, Duncan and a few more.

Offline Alan Snelson

  • Global Moderator
  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 1132
  • Total likes: 828
  • Ships Photographer '78 - '82
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #62 on: Apr 28, 2013, 02:39 PM »
Hi Maggie
The dates you were on board our paths definitely would have crossed. The other photogs you mention, I assume you mean Paul Guest. A really good fine art photographer, he went to the Falklands to document QE2's journey and took some great pictures. Last I heard he had a successful studios in Bristol, his home town. I came across a photo of him and the team from the '83 World cruise somewhere on this forum but I can't remember where now, maybe in the gallery. I was on the '81 World cruise with him but he and the Chief photographer had a big falling out and if I remember right he got off at the end of the cruise. Have attached a picture of the photographers team for the '82 World cruise, see if it rings any bells. The name Gordon Gushee you mentioned sounds familiar but I don't know why. What did he do on board?
Don't just be part of her past, be part of her history!

Offline Rod

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #63 on: Apr 28, 2013, 06:56 PM »
Whom was the guy on the left?? He was really nice.

Offline Alan Snelson

  • Global Moderator
  • Queens Grill Diner
  • *****
  • Posts: 1132
  • Total likes: 828
  • Ships Photographer '78 - '82
Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #64 on: Apr 28, 2013, 07:10 PM »
Hi Rod
That was Dave Barnicoat who worked on board for many years on and off and yes he was a good guy. On the '82 World cruise he was pioneering the use of video for sale to passengers. I never did get to see the final production from the cruise but I assume it was a success as he was back on board for the '83 World cruise.
Don't just be part of her past, be part of her history!

Offline Jim Bennett

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #65 on: Jan 13, 2014, 12:21 PM »
I know this is an old topic now but I recognise at least one of the girls in one photo. I was a photographer from 79 to 82 so our paths might have crossed. I was in cabin 5004 in 1981 but in earlier years was in a cabin surrounded by casino staff I think it was 5042 or 5048. Have attached an even earlier pic of  some of the casino girls with myself and Steve Dean (another photographer) afraid I don't remember any of the girls names now.

Hi Rod / Alan,

I remember Maggie - and Gilly of course! Don't recognise any of the girls in this photo, but the guy almost out of shot on the left is Mike Millen - one of the Electrical Engineers.
Jim

Offline backinthehatch

Re: Casino girl.. 1981 - 1983
« Reply #66 on: Feb 28, 2014, 02:56 AM »
Hi Maggie
The dates you were on board our paths definitely would have crossed. The other photogs you mention, I assume you mean Paul Guest. A really good fine art photographer, he went to the Falklands to document QE2's journey and took some great pictures. Last I heard he had a successful studios in Bristol, his home town. I came across a photo of him and the team from the '83 World cruise somewhere on this forum but I can't remember where now, maybe in the gallery. I was on the '81 World cruise with him but he and the Chief photographer had a big falling out and if I remember right he got off at the end of the cruise. Have attached a picture of the photographers team for the '82 World cruise, see if it rings any bells. The name Gordon Gushee you mentioned sounds familiar but I don't know why. What did he do on board?

Check out this article about Paul Guest and his son, !!     http://www.bristolpost.co.uk/Judge-condemns-drugs-gang-pure-greed/story-16744591-detail/story.html         The casino girl next to you on the right was called Cathy.