Monday, September 17, 2012

A bit of nostalgia with some politics sprinkled on top.

I was dickin round the other day and stumbled across a couple relics from my past.
I may have mentioned before that I rode two Destroyers during the ‘70s, both Knox class ships.
The first one was home ported in Yokosuka Japan. The second was in dry-dock in Swan Island Oregon when I arrived, going thru an overhaul.
The first ship was the best duty as being HP’ed in Japan gave us easy access to lots of exotic liberty ports.
I visited 17 countries while onboard that ship!
At one point, and I don’t remember why, but we seemed to go to Korea every weekend.

You could find me in the fireroom, manning the two 1200 PSI boilers the ship used for propulsion, electric power, and hotel services. (hot water, ect.)
A regular fleet sailor, crusty, diesel covered, and ready for liberty.

This ashtry was one that was on every table and bar top in the enlisted mans club in Subic Bay Philippines. I did not hang out there as the real fun lies just outside the main gate in Olongopo City. Spent some of the time there.
But usually me and my friends would catch a jeepny to Subic City about 20 miles away. Clue: no shore patrol there!

And this matchbook is from one of my favorite bars there.
Stumpy and Gimpy’s Muff Divers Inn.
A truly class-less place! Truly.

Found one other item I had forgot about.
When a ship makes the transition from moored to underway, as soon as the last mooring line is cast off, they announce “UNDERWAY, SHIFT COLORS’ and the flag is moved from the mast on the fantail (the square end of the ship) and it is raised up on the top mast near the boiler exhausts. Then when mooring it goes in reverse.
When I left the first ship, I took that flag with me. Found it a few days ago.
Don’t worry, they had another one.
I’m not all that much for patriotism, flag waving and all that. I leave that to those who get something out of it.
But my 4 years at sea were a unforgetable portion of my life.
Also not one who believes the USof A is the greatest country that ever lived. (greatest military tho)
And we did get our absentee ballots sent off, if nothing else, they will cancel out some of these crazy a-holes out there saying the world will collapse of we continue on this path.

So,, that’s my political shit for the month. Nnyyyaaaaa.

Fives S's-- The traditional steps to prepare for liberty: Shit, Shower, Shave, and Shine Shoes.


Dave + Dianna Rider said...

And sleeping with your tropical white longs under the mattress so they have some nice just-pressed looking creases.
Crossing Shit River, Carmen's Money Exchange and their loud speaker, and the Jolo Club. I think it was on a par with Stumpy and Gimpy's.
The life of a fleet sailor.
Ah, what memories.
Thanks Barn.


Anonymous said...

Oh yeah! Memories....nothing quite like life on a destroyer...and liberty in Asia

catdance62 said...

It's cool that you still have the matchbook and the humidity and mold of Belize haven't destroyed it yet.