Meet the crew: Julius Griška

This time we meet Julius GriškaJulius has a life story is remarkable. He has lived in four countries. He acquired his current qualification by coincidence. He has prepared food for thousands of cruise ferry passengers, completed an apprenticeship at a Michelin-rated restaurant owned by a world-famous chef and cooked for the likes of the previous Prime Minister of Lithuania and Formula One champions during a race event. 

He now works on board Regina Seaways and, in his own words, he feels like he is living a dream. Ideal schedule, a job he is passionate about and the opportunity to have some alone time. Just like in his previous career, today Julius works in the kitchen. He claims that the most important thing to understand about working in the kitchen is it is not about an individual but rather about working as a team. If someone faces difficulties, you must give them a hand.  

Chef by coincidence 

Since early days, I really enjoyed cooking. And, of course, eating. However, my life ambition was to work in car repairs and to become a vehicle technician. After graduating from secondary school, I moved to Dublin where I took some odd jobs before I decided to pursue vocational training. The study group for a technician training programme was already, however, there was a chef training group still open for enrolment at the other end of the corridor. This was how I ended up becoming a chef, all by coincidence” says Julius. 

How I see my job 

When I started working aboard cruise ferries, I realized that I do not suffer from any kind of sea-sickness, even though I have sailed through rough sea conditions. This probably explains my longing for the sea that I felt as soon as I got home. 

There is a world of difference between my current and previous jobs. There are thousands of customers and a kitchen staff of 60 people aboard a cruise ship compared to just six of us working on board Regina. But I can firmly say that I am actually living my dream here! On cruise ships, we worked for 4 months followed by 2 months of shore leave. Thus, while working here, I never feel exhausted. In the beginning, I even took some extra work after I came back from the sea. I no longer do that. Now I devote all of my free time to myself. I really like the fact that we have very clear boundaries here. You work, you get your shore leave and then you simply forget about your job. You do not take work stress home with you. 

When the pandemic hit, the pace of life has slowed for many of us. I realized that there is no point in running yourself ragged. I’m about to turn 40 and I spent my entire life trying to get somewhere frantically. 

In my freetime 

I enjoy living an active lifestyle. I like sports, walking, mushroom hunting, fishing, basketball and football. I am equally comfortable just sitting in my armchair and watching TV for hours on end, without even taking a shower.

January 8, 2021