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Jackalgirl

235 - Happy Birthday, US Navy! -- a COINTEST

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On October 13, 1775, the Congressional Congress authorized the procurement & preparation of two vessels to patrol against British ships bringing in munitions to the British Army. Today, October 13th 2010, is the 235th anniversary of the founding of the United States Navy.

 

One of the traditions we have in the Navy is the telling of sea stories. It usually goes like this:

 

Person A: Once, when my ship/boat* pulled into this place, I did this thing and saw this amazing other thing.

 

Person B: Really? That reminds me of the time when the ship/boat pulled into this other port, and then me, so-and-so, such-and-such, and Seaman Schmukatelli went out and...

 

<four hours later>

 

Person A: Wow! That's hilarious! That reminds ME of the time when my ship/boat pulled into that OTHER port, and we...

 

<wash, rinse, repeat>

 

*If you don't know, surface sailors generally refer to their vessels as "ships"** and submariners generally refer to their vessels as "boats".

 

**We surface types sometimes will call our ships "boats". But only WE can do that, okay? ; )

 

So this is your task: tell me a sea story. It does not have to be a story from, or about, the sea, but stories that take place during traveling or geocaching would be awesome. It doesn't have to be funny, tho of course those kinds of stories are great too. Really, it just has to be memorable in some way: funny, scary, exotic, inspiring, profound -- something that'll leave a mark on the readership (and, of course, impress them with your overall awesomeness since, let's face it, this is the primary purpose of a sea story).

 

THE PRIZE(S)

Three winners get a choice of: a 1 of 15 Artist Edition Waterlily Netsuke (it's got water on it), a CSP NDC Navy Challenge Coin (not trackable, I'm afraid, but definitely Nautical), and a personalized 2010 Mini-Doubloon (I'll engrave your name on it, and a doubloon is piratical and therefore nautical, right?). That is to say, the first place winner gets first choice, the second place winner gets second choice, and the third place winner gets what remains. How's that for a haul?

 

THE METHOD

I'll give everyone until October 29th to get it out of their systems. On Halloween, I'll choose one story. If they're all awesome, it'll be a random choice. If there's a clear choice, I'll make that choice (and perhaps enlist my retired Navy Chief husband to help out). There's no limit on entries, but if you make a second (or third, or fourth, etc.,) it would be nice if it was inspired by someone else's entry (on the order of "that reminds me of the time when...").

 

I'll get it started with a semi-funny (for me, at least) sea story:

 

Once, when I was stationed in USS McFAUL (DDG-74), we had to pull back into Norfolk, Virginia, and were a little late doing so. Now, you see, if you come in after working hours (or on the weekend), the tug boats who help you (DDGs don't have nifty maneuvering thrusters, so we need a little help getting pushed up to the pier) get paid overtime. So, naturally, you have to be on time or the Navy gets a little bit techy about the extra expense, and like I said, we were a little late.

 

My station for the Sea & Anchor detail was Aft M-60. I stood on the very back end of the ship next to a pintle-mounted light machine gun. My function was, of course, to keep watch behind the ship (and report, via sound-powered phone, to the Chief or Officer whose function was overall head of security, on the various things I might see).

 

So here we are, driving through Chesapeake Bay/the Hampton Roads to get to Norfolk. You may not know that there is a speed limit in the Chesapeake Bay. There is. Just so you know. Did I mention that we were a little late? So the ship was pulling up a nice little rooster tail behind it (it looked like a big, fluffy, foamy triangular pillow) and I have to admit that although I was mostly paying attention to what I should have been paying attention to (vis. stuff that could be an issue, like small boats, behind the ship), I was also looking at the wake, because it's neat to look at.

 

Oh! I thought. How cool! There are fish leaping up in the wake behind us! And then I realized that the fish were leaping backwards. Wait a minute, the fish weren't jumping up. No. We were going, um, a bit faster than aforementioned speed limit, and in fact were going so fast that we had created a churn that reached all the way to the bottom of the bay and was sucking up the fish and throwing them up in the air. Poor fishies!

 

We pulled in on time.

 

<wipes away tears> That Captain. I'll never forget the guy. That reminds me of another time when he...

 

but that's another story. : )

Edited by Jackalgirl

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Let's give it a shot, I have a sea story at hand!

 

This past summer, we were in Denmark with our viking group and the little viking ship "Fenrir", who usually sails lakes!

We attended a first market in Aarhus and had the next market in Hobro (check a map), so we had decided to use the ship to go there.

 

So we were, all four of us, on a 6.5m long wooden ship, with almost nothing else than historical costumes, food for four days, a blanket and a sheepskin (or reindeer skin) per person, a road map and a GPS.

And we sailed and rowed (when the wind was against us), stopping at night on the coast to set up a camp with a linen sheet spread over four oars and a rope, lit fire with flintstone and ate ...spaghetti!

 

The third day, after having suffered a heavy weather, we came in sight of the Mariager fjord. There, we thought that since freight ships sailed there, we should not have any problem with our little light ship. We only need 60 cm of water to sail!

And there we were, happy to see the fjord and all, when the bottom of the ship touched ground. We were over 1 km away from the coastline! Neither one of us really knew of these shallows...

 

Our captain stepped out of the ship, thinking that without his 110kg in there, we might be able to sail again. Standing 1km away from the coast, with water up to his knees, he pushed the ship for a while. It was no better, so my husband stepped out as well, got his feet stuck in the planks and fell into the water. 80kg less in the the ship did little good to our situation.

So the two remaining members of the crew (me and another friend) got out as well and all four of us, in viking clothes, waddling in the shallow water, the feet in the shelly sand, pushed the ship until we reached another zone where we could sail again!

Indeed, there was such a tiny canal where ships could sail in this fjord that even vikings could not pass everywhere.

Sadly, we did not take pictures of this particular event, but we have some other pics of this great adventure.

If you're interested, find them on Around Fenrir.

 

I hope you enjoyed my little story!

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Being a landlubber, sadly I have no sea stories to tell.

 

But just this: You know the best cure against seasickness?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sit under a tree.

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Neat idea for a cointest. Alas I have no Navy (or Military) experiences in my repertoire, but perhaps I could dig deep for a travelling story that might amuse my friends here in the forums.

 

THAT REMINDS ME OF THE TIME WHEN ... I was growing up outside of Philadelphia. As a teenager, I was working at a restaurant. A friend of mine also worked there, and one summer evening, he was having a particularly frustrating time at work - everything and everyone was getting on his nerves. Finally, the manager sent him home. About an hour or two later, things had slowed down to the point that I was allowed to leave as well. I drove to his house because I was worried about him, and thought we could go out and have a little bit of fun.

 

As we left his house, a thunderstorm popped up. That's not at all unusual during that time of year, so we never gave it a second thought. We were driving through Valley Forge Park (an area made famous by George Washington's Winter of 1776). As we were driving through the park, lightning struck my car! I was moving along the road at the time, so it was quite odd, indeed! I quickly pulled over and yelled, "What the *$*^%! was that?!?!" He said, "I think it was lightning!" I got out of my car, in the driving rain, and looked at the side of my car. Sure enough, there was a hole melted in a plastic vent about the size of a pencil.

 

We drove on to the mall, went inside, and just hung out for a while. When the mall was closing, we went out to my car again (the rain had stopped by that time). It wouldn't start. Apparently, the lightning had fried the electrical system, so that there was no chance of starting the engine again. His mom came and picked us up, and took us home. The next morning, my dad brought me back to see if we could get my car started, and we smelled gasoline. Looking under the car, we could see that it had leaked out. Yes...the lightning made a hole in my gas tank!! As we all know, gas doesn't burn - it's the fumes that are flammable. If I had not just filled up my tank on the way to pick up my friend, my car would have exploded, and I would not be here to tell this story. But since the tank was full, there was no room for any fumes to ignite!!

 

The funny part was that earlier that week, on the National News, was a story about the first ever documented case of a moving car getting struck by lightning. Three days later, it happened to me, and nobody cared. Oh well...I have a great story to share for the rest of my life, so I'm not worried about it.

 

It was incredibly loud, and intensely bright. Also, as this was back around the late 1980s, I had long hair, and it all stood up on end when the lightning was there. It was a very strange feeling, and I am very lucky to be here.

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WOW!!! sea stories!!! :D I have some to tell...

 

I saw Mikal's story about the thunderstorm and that reminded me a trip I had..... a bad one!!!

 

I live on an island so most of our trips are with ships! we go to other islands or to Piraeus...

 

I was in the army and my camp were I was training as a soldier (I was a new fish there!), was in Athens! I had come for 5 days in rhodes for the Easter, and I had to go back! I was 19 years old, but what I lived on the ship was quite scary! I know that for the navy this is nothing, but...

 

anyway... I had to say goodbye to my family again and went into the ship! I was alone this time!

 

When I was going to Athens to join the army my father was with me! Not that I was afraid of something, but... the day I had to enter the camp was... my birthday! they didn't want to spend it alone, and just because 3 days earlier there was a great military parade in Athens for the independence day... we made plants to go and see if from close! :)

that was a nice trip, with the only exception of the time when we reached Kalymnos port!!! More boys were entering in the ship to join the army and their mother's were crying and throwing flowers in the sea!!!! It was the worst thing I have ever seen! It was like we were all going to die or something!!!!! I felt so terrible!!!

 

Well.... back to my story.... the sea was perfect and I was sure that that would be a great and peacefull voyage! huh!!! I wish!!!

 

I had already made a reservation for a bed in a cabine, becasue the trip was a big one... 16 or more hours for a straight way.... I mean without making the usual stops in other islands! I had chossen this because it was faster!

 

I was alone so I started making friends inside.... there was other soldiers too, but none was from my camp! we started talking about the army and what we were doing... how things were... you know! :)

 

after some hours, the weather changed! we didn't know it for sure but the sailors knew it! We were passing Icarian sea where the ship is shakking from the waves no matter the season of if the sea is calm... (there are waves there all the time), so we didn't care a lot... this was going to stop soon....

 

unfortunatelly things were getting harder and harder!!! I remember, I was watching a guy who was spending a fortune in games there (packman, tetris....), he spent 90,000 drachmas in these! that was all of his money and he was poor! His mother was cleaning stairs to collect some money and send it to him and he was... :cool: What an @#$$#@@!!!!!

 

On every game box, there was an ashtray! at first, when the first waves of the bad weather started hiting us, the ashtrays were going from one side to the other! the ship was shaking a lot.... but as I said... this was only the beggining!!!

 

I went for a while in the cabine to get some rest! It was not easy to walk and I went to get some sleep! 3 other guys were sharring the cabine with me! when things started being extremelly hard, I cound't even stay on bed!!! I was hiting the sides.... then a terrible smell came inside!! The cabin boy was pasing from all the cabines and he was spraying with an air perfume, each cabine! Because of the rouch sea, the... dirty water and other stuff came out of the main cesspool of the ship! none could stay in a cabines! Outside the sea was so bad.... the crew was a little worried with all this! we could't stop anywere... there was no safe port in our way and the wind was very strong... To make you understand how things were... we had according to Beaufort scale.... a 10.5!!! If you go to wikipedia and search for the beaufort scale... you will see what I mean!!!

 

With such a bad weather, no ship is allowed to sail, but it hit us on our way in the middle of the Aegean sea!! we couldn't go anywere but to move on!!!

 

remember what I was saying about the game boxes and the ashtray's??? Well... now the whole game box was moving like that!!!! doors couldn't close... they were hitting... Everyone was afraid... others... were taking out everything they had eaten!!

 

I couldn't walk good, I couldn;t stand for a long time but I started to check where the lifejackets were, I was in front of a map for emergency... to see where I have to go if something was going wrong...

Most of the times none was checking these things, none was paying attention the TV when they were showing what to do and how to tide the life jacket.... but now things were different!

 

An old woman started crying and praying to St. Nikolas who is the protector of the seamen....

 

After some hours, a new day came... we were ok, and we were reaching Piraeus port! Many were down to see us! the weather was very hard and they knew that we were out there.... we were all with yellow faces.. tired....

 

Nobody was waiting me.. I was alone and had no relatives there!

After the worse night of my life (till now), when my feet touched the ground I felt so happy!!! the funny is that I couldn't walk straingt!!!

 

I was a little late and I had to go to the electric train and then to take the bus... to reach the camp! Huh! electric trains had a strike for some hours!!!! Oh boy.... after a bad night... a bad day would come?? If I was late to enter in the camp... 20 days in prison were waiting for me! when I say prison in the army... it is a punishment that everyday you had the bad numbers to be a guard etc, you were doing all the clening stuff, helping in the kitchen... and you can not go out from the camp... :)

 

I saw if there was a taxi there but no luck!! Taxi drivers were on strike too!!!

What is going on here???? I was desperate!

 

After some time... the first electric train came and I entered! then I run to reach the bus station but the bus was leaving!!! I was running holding my bags and started hitting the door of the bus! The driver stopped and I entered! there was a seat near there so I sat and said I am sorry... trying to explain.... he was socked!! You were in that ship???? Huh! everybody knew about us?? what were we?? Somekind of heroes?? :P

 

When I reached the camp gate I calmed down a little! I still had 10 minutes so I called my parents to tell them I was ok, and safe!

They were so happy to hear me!!! they were so afraid with the weather... my sister was telephoning al the time to the coast guards, to the navy company, to other ports to hear any news! Of course... the other ports knew nothing because we were not going there! But... she hoped that we stopped in a port until this would pass...

 

then I saw the MP waving at me.... come it is time otherwise I will have to declare you as a non came soldier!!! I closed the phone but I forgot my phonecard in!!! It was a bright new phone card of 500 units... an expensive one! :cool: when I realised it... I asked the MP if I cound go and take it but he didn't allow me! :grin: then I saw a kid going taking the card and leaving! they were quite collectibles!

 

the good thing was that at that day a general was coming to check all of us!

So I was safe with that! :) The generals saw the others...not me! :cool:

 

Later I heard that the ship had some damages so it had to stay for some days in Piraeus port... We were all lucky!!!

 

the ship's name was Rodos and the sea company that had it was the DANE, a dodecanesian company that now does not exist! :grin:

That took place a week after Easter of 1995 if I remember well!

Edited by GATOULIS

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Can I ask something?

 

I have a story, a true story that took place back in the old times and it is consider to be a great mirracle! It has nothing to do with me but can I post it?

I know an other story... about a stone ship, but it is a legent....

 

Oh boy.... the prices are so great! A challenge coin (wow! I have one from Airforce!!), a dubloon with our name.... a watterlilly coin!!! Oh boy!!!

 

and just for my sweet Jackalgirl who is in the subs (and all other cachers of course...)... a sort funny story to make you laugh a little...

I do not know if this will count... I am posting it for fun! :cool:

 

I remember when I first saw a sub here in rhodes! It was a small one, fror France! Many went to see it from close! One of the officers, the one whose job was to whistle and the sailors were saluting .... I do not remember well..., was so stressed with all the people watching and while we was about to whistle, the metal whistle slipped and fell in the sea! :grin:

He took a second but again bafore it whistles... it fell in the sea too!!!

Again a third metal one had the same end and we were laughing!!! :P

finaly a sailor gave him a plastic yellow whistle but it was not the original sound... it was like a refferee was whistling for a penalty! :cool:

 

the poor officer... he was red of shame!!! the sailors were trying to hold their laughs too! we all laughed..... poor guy!!! :cool:

 

I liked these strange metal whistles that sound different but who can dive there to find them after.... 30 years??? :grin:

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hmmm.... The story with the ship and my adventure that I posted was not in 1995 but in 1994! that is checked! :grin:

 

I am just correcting this....

 

I have 2-3 other stories except the one I mentioned as a mirracle...

 

just to bring the thread up and others can see it, I will post this strange story!

 

as I posted... my trip was a dangerous one.. and who could had sank... so... that's reminded me this story....

 

Everything you will read is true! It happend in the old times, I was not participating (I was not born at that time... I do not even know if my parents or my grandparents were born!), so it is not a participating story jut see it as an other bonus story...! :wub: I hope that is ok Jackalgirl! :D

 

 

A long long time ago... ships were made of wood! thigs were rough and it only needed a bad weather or a rock and you were going down to the bottom of the sea! Many great sailors lost their lives like that!

 

There was a greek ship at that time sailing in the deep sea.. far away from land! according to the story... it was in the ocean.. an accident happent, probably they hit something or because of the bad weather... the ship cracked and a hole was made! The ship was going to be sunked in seconds and the crue was going to die! lots of water was coming in!!! then... they started praying to Panagia of Tinos to save them!! Panagia is Virgin Mary! They cound't believe in their eyes when they realized that the ship was not going down but they actually managed to reach a port!!!

when they went to check the crack.... they saw that a big fish had stuck in the hole and actually closed the hole! that is why they didn't sunk!!!!

The first thing they did was to collect money and they made a silver olive oil light... like the ones you see hanging in greek churches... under it there was a miniature of their ship and the fish stuck in it! you can still see this when you visit the church in Tinos island!

 

chur_icon_miracles.jpg

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Hmmmm..... THAT REMINDS ME OF WHEN.... when I was about ten years old my family was gathered at my aunt and uncles new house one the banks of the Ohio River. For those that don't know..... the Ohio river is a very, very busy river with lots and lots of barges and very, very dirty because of all of the chemicals that the corporate plants like to release into the ground water supply to the river.

 

So, my uncle had just gotten a new Jet Ski. You have to be 16 to ride one in Ohio and Kentucky.... but of course I learned just a little younger than most :grin: Well, my grandpa (whom I rarely seen as a child) decided that he was going to show us all how to "ride a jet ski". He was 6'4" truck driver who weighed about 260 lbs. at the time. So he climbs on to this jet ski with the help of my dad and then "jets" up and down the river. Dad told him not to go across the river.... but the man didn't listen. He got 3/4ths of a mile across the river (almost the entire width in these parts) when he hit a large wake created by a passing house boat. As I had mentioned before, my grandpa was a large man and high centers of gravity+jet ski on a fluid surface don't mix well. My grandpa flipped the craft.

 

Now, when you fall off of a jet ski, a safety cord kills the engine... so you don't become stranded. Unfortunately for my grandpa, he didn't have the correct weight to coordination ratio to get himself back on the craft (remember my dad helped him on the first time). So here sets my grandpa..... 3/4 of a mile away from all of us. That situation in itself isn't so bad. But combine that with a busy river.... and it makes it much worse. After watching him from afar trying over and over to get onto the jetski, we noticed that there were 2, not one, but tow barges heading for him in opposite directions. Keep in mind barges are quite slow... specially when they have to navigate a river.... but they are the most dangerous things on the river. If you get hit by one you're not comin back.... and if your boat gets hit.... don't expect it to stay afloat.

 

With no hesitation, my dad runs up stream about 1/2 mile (so the current would carry him back down) and then jumps into the river. He swims all the way to my grandpa..... rocks the jet ski over..... hops on and starts it just about a minute or two before the barge got to the location. My grandpa didn't have enough strength to get on..... so he just grabbed ahold of the back of the seat. Dad slowly drove him back to us. My grandpa never got back on a jet ski.

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It rather reminded me of the famous story during WW2 of the two sailors in ships which were alongside each other. The USN sailor looked down at the Royal Navy Sailor and asked,

 

"What is it like to be in the second largest navy?" and the British Sailor replied, "What is it like to be in the second best navy?"

 

:D

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It rather reminded me of the famous story during WW2 of the two sailors in ships which were alongside each other. The USN sailor looked down at the Royal Navy Sailor and asked,

 

"What is it like to be in the second largest navy?" and the British Sailor replied, "What is it like to be in the second best navy?"

 

:D

 

:yikes::huh::laughing::laughing::laughing:

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No one else has any stories to share???

 

I have some stories... I have an accident that happent and I was in.... a story that happent in the 1970 (I was not born yet!) and had to do with my godfather (he is my uncle too!) and... how he came to USA.... but I do not know if I can post that too... it is not my story but it is a family story...

 

and I know some WWII navy stories.... one of them has to do with my family...my grandfather and the family...

 

anyway.... I will post some soon... :yikes: of course I do not know if the story of my godfather and the story of my grandfather will count....

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the whole thing about WWII... reminded me a story of a Greek navy ship in WWII! This is not a story I am participating or anything! So I do not think this will count! Since it is a navy thread, I hope it is ok to post this story...

 

Greek navy is a quite historic one! Even if our ships were old we participated in all wars and there are some heroic stories about it...

 

Greece actually entered in the WWII, when an Italian Sub hit with torpedos and sunked it... a greek navy ship called ELLI, that was in Tinos island for the celebrations of the August 15, and the church of our Lady....

 

Ships became legents... like the Vasilissa Olga, the sub Papanikolis...

 

Even a very old but so pretty battleship we had from the 1910, the Averof had a role there! We still have Averof as a museum! Although popularly known as a battleship, it is in fact an armored cruiser, and the only such ship still in existence.

You can see it here....

BATTLESHIP20G_20AVEROF.jpg

 

BUT..... there is an amazing story about an other greek ship in WWII, a Destroyer wit hthe name ADRIAS that did something amazing!!!

I am copying this from wikipedia:

 

On October 22, 1943, during operations in the Dodecanese Islands and while near the island of Kalymnos with the British destroyer HMS Hurworth, Adrias struck a mine. From the explosion, her bow was torn off. The English Flotilla Commander onboard Hurworth ordered Cmdr. Toumbas to abandon ship. Hurworth, while trying to come to Adrias's rescue, also hit a mine and sunk taking 143 men with her. In spite of the damage suffered, Adrias took on the survivors of Hurworth (among them her CO) and managed to reach the nearby coast of Gümüşlük in neutral Turkey with 21 men of her crew dead and 30 wounded. After some minor repairs, the ship sailed on December 1 for Alexandria, despite her missing bow. After a trip of 730 nautical miles (1,350 km), of which 300 were within the range of Luftwaffe's Junkers Ju 88 bombers based in occupied Greece, (the threat of them forced her to sail only at night despite her limited maneuverability), she managed to reach Alexandria on 6 December (day of the Feast of St. Nicholas, patron saint of seamen) where she was enthusiastically greeted by the British Fleet and other Allied ships. This achievement was considered a brilliant example of seamanship, and provided a morale boost to the Royal Hellenic Navy and other allied ships in the Mediterranean Sea.

 

This is the ship's photo:

Photo11deGrAdrias1CH.jpg

 

And here is a photo when it was hit! a huge piece... actually all the front part is missing but they managed to save it and go to Alexandria which is far far far away!!!

 

greek_dd_adrias.jpg

Edited by GATOULIS

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That reminds me of the time.... My uncle and I were fishing on a pond in south Carolina whn we saw a really long object swimmng on the pond. My uncle told me it was a water moccasin. Water moccasins are poisonous by the way. My uncle decided it would be a good idea to try to fish for it. We never thought we would catch it.... But of course I hooked it. So.... I reeled it half way in. My uncle pulled out his 12 gauge and shot it. Would you believe that sucker still floated without a head..... Hahahaha. Sick.... But amusing.

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the whole thing about WWII... reminded me a story of a Greek navy ship in WWII! This is not a story I am participating or anything! So I do not think this will count! Since it is a navy thread, I hope it is ok to post this story...

 

Greek navy is a quite historic one! Even if our ships were old we participated in all wars and there are some heroic stories about it...

 

Greece actually entered in the WWII, when an Italian Sub hit with torpedos and sunked it... a greek navy ship called ELLI, that was in Tinos island for the celebrations of the August 15, and the church of our Lady....

 

Ships became legents... like the Vasilissa Olga, the sub Papanikolis...

 

Even a very old but so pretty battleship we had from the 1910, the Averof had a role there! We still have Averof as a museum! Although popularly known as a battleship, it is in fact an armored cruiser, and the only such ship still in existence.

You can see it here....

snip

Gatoulis, have I ever told you that Omaha had a Greek ship in it's Navy? At least for a little while, our scout troop had its raingutter regatta (model boat races) on it's decks.

 

USS LSM-45 is a LSM-1-class medium landing ship built for the United States Navy during World War II. The ship also served as Ypoploiarkhos Grigoropoulos (L161) in the Hellenic Navy from 1958 to 1993. She is the last known surviving LSM in its original configuration. Currently located at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, LSM-45 was donated to the Museum of the Marine by the now defunct Amphibious Ship Museum[1] under the understanding that it would be put on display at the museum, and was towed to North Carolina in 2004 from Omaha, Nebraska. The museum decided in 2007 that the ship will not be a part of the museum[2] and is looking for another home for the ship. There have been reports that the Museum is considering scrapping or sinking the ship as an artificial reef.[3]

 

LSM_45_in_SAn_Francisco_bay_1945-46.jpg

Edited by catsnfish

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Oh boy.... that reminded me of the time......

 

I was a child but I was fishing good!! nope, not fishes but octopuses etc!

we were in Tilos island (About 25 years ago... or a little more..), in a day trip with a ship! The ship was small, one of the ship that can only travel during day... and they only go to small islands near Rhodes! It was a 5 hours voyage to go there, so we could only stay on the osland for 3 hours! the island is small so we saw most of the things you should see (the museum, the villages, the area of the cave where the pygmy elephant bones were found...) so we stoped on a beach near the small port to take a swimm! water is very clean in Tilos!!! While I was looking the bottom of the sea and I was searching for something ti hunt... (I never use spearguns!!!), I saw a huge octopus!!! its nest was on big pubbles, so I went quickly and grab it from the head! Oh... it was very difficult to handle this big one!!! when I grabbed it.. it actually grabbed me too! when I grabbed it.. it actually took all the nest rocks with it, leaving a hole on the bottom,, like the place was bombed! :laughing:

 

It was so strong, so I asked help! My father came close but he couldn't reach me because he doesn't know how to swim... I managed to go out and my father took it off of me! it's cupping (is that the right word?) marks were on my body, on my hands... and from some blood was coming off, but it was nothing serious! the only problem was that it was bitting me with its teeth (the bottom of the octopus is its mouth)!

 

anyway... my father started hiting it on the rocks... I know that this is not so nice for tourists to see and it is not nice to hear it but this is the way you do so the octopus will be softer to eat! if you ever eat octopus... be sure this method was done!

he had a small problem until the octopus dies... because it was a big one as I said... when we came back home and weight it... it was 2.5 kilos! For a child of 9-10, and so thin that you could count his bones... it was even bigger! :yikes:

 

while my father was doing this, the ship started giving signals that they are about to leave so all passengers have to enter!!!! Oh boy!!! We collect our things and started run, but my father had to finish!!! the good thing was that it was close.... so me and my sister run to the ship and my father and mother were following from a distance! We entered in the ship and they were about to leave when we said... please do not go yet... my mother has a heart problem and my father is bringing her now... they can not run! so they waited for them but when they entered the sailors started asking my mother ...who didn't know what we had said.... if she was ok, if she is feeling ok.... :huh: She was looking strangely wondering why all that! :laughing:

 

This was the biggest octopus I caught in bare hands so far!

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Joe, you mean in Normandy? Yes! There were some Greek ships participating there too!!!

 

In case you are interested in mystery things etc....

I am sure you all know the experiment in Philadelphia.... with Eldridge....

 

Do you know what happent to the ship? :yikes: In 1951 the ship was given to the Greek navy and was named LEON (Lion) it was in use until 1992!

 

There are legents about the experiment but about the ship too...

I have seen in TV, greek sailors who were on duty in Leon, saying that they were hearing voices, they were feeling a strange power sometimes, radars etc were going like crazy just like that and then they were ok again.... and that there were many pipes and other strange things on the ship that were ending nowhere... I think they said there was a strange machine engine there too... anyway... according to what I saw in TV, before USA gave the ship to the Greek, they took many parts out... (normal thing to do)! so...

Now... I think USA nave asked the ship again after 1992.. and maybe they took it... I do not know...

But I have seen this ship :huh: She was making patrols here in dodecanese! :laughing:

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Joe, you mean in Normandy? Yes! There were some Greek ships participating there too!!!

 

In case you are interested in mystery things etc....

I am sure you all know the experiment in Philadelphia.... with Eldridge....

 

Do you know what happent to the ship? :huh: In 1951 the ship was given to the Greek navy and was named LEON (Lion) it was in use until 1992!

 

There are legents about the experiment but about the ship too...

I have seen in TV, greek sailors who were on duty in Leon, saying that they were hearing voices, they were feeling a strange power sometimes, radars etc were going like crazy just like that and then they were ok again.... and that there were many pipes and other strange things on the ship that were ending nowhere... I think they said there was a strange machine engine there too... anyway... according to what I saw in TV, before USA gave the ship to the Greek, they took many parts out... (normal thing to do)! so...

Now... I think USA nave asked the ship again after 1992.. and maybe they took it... I do not know...

But I have seen this ship :laughing: She was making patrols here in dodecanese! :laughing:

It was here, in Omaha, Nebraska, less than 2 miles from my home :yikes: it was docked alongside the rest of our Navy, a mine sweeper, and a submarine. We have a coast guard station about a mile from my home also.

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and while I was writing my previous post about fishing and boats..... it reminded me a funny story that happent some years ago! :D

 

A couple from England wanted to stay in Leros, so we rent them our house there! They loved the island, they were over 60 so Leros looked like a paradise for them! :laughing: The man had a small boat and he liked going for fishing!

My godfather was going with him too! (later, he bought the boat from the English man, when he bought a bigger one...), they were going to fish squids! Calamari is so tasty and there were many in Leros... You only had to know when and where to go.... :laughing:

 

I was there for vacations and they took me too! It was so easy to catch them! You didn't even have to put bait!! only a glowing plastic fish with hooks..... but this is on other story... :laughing:

 

We started caughting them while it was about to get dark! Oh.... they were huge!!! Some were so big and quite difficult to catch!! I was said to be careful because they throw their "ink" with force and...

the first one I caught, was a huge one! We measured it later and it was 63cm without the legs.... anyway.... I was so happy that hold it and turned it to the Englishman to show it to him! He was standing and wearing white clothes... he was trying not to get dirty... but I 've done it!!!

 

When I turned, hold the squid, and said to him... look what did I caught... the stupid calamari blowed his ink!!!! Oh!!!!!! The poor captain (the englishman) turned blue!!! all the ink went straight to him!!!! He only said with an ungry tone.... THANK YOU!!!!

 

Oh boy... I turned red and started thinking that I had to swimm back now! :yikes: But he was a good man... and probably thought that if he would say get off my boat... I could easily say... get off my house.. too! :huh: No... I am kiding! :D

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Joe, you mean in Normandy? Yes! There were some Greek ships participating there too!!!

 

In case you are interested in mystery things etc....

I am sure you all know the experiment in Philadelphia.... with Eldridge....

 

Do you know what happent to the ship? :D In 1951 the ship was given to the Greek navy and was named LEON (Lion) it was in use until 1992!

 

There are legents about the experiment but about the ship too...

I have seen in TV, greek sailors who were on duty in Leon, saying that they were hearing voices, they were feeling a strange power sometimes, radars etc were going like crazy just like that and then they were ok again.... and that there were many pipes and other strange things on the ship that were ending nowhere... I think they said there was a strange machine engine there too... anyway... according to what I saw in TV, before USA gave the ship to the Greek, they took many parts out... (normal thing to do)! so...

Now... I think USA nave asked the ship again after 1992.. and maybe they took it... I do not know...

But I have seen this ship :) She was making patrols here in dodecanese! :D

It was here, in Omaha, Nebraska, less than 2 miles from my home :yikes: it was docked alongside the rest of our Navy, a mine sweeper, and a submarine. We have a coast guard station about a mile from my home also.

 

Oh!!! I read the quote... I haven't see it...

WOW! I didn't know that! I am wondering why they finally didn't keep it as part of the museum collection there.... if she is the last known surviving LSM in its original configuration!!! Some ships are museum pieces for sure! unfortunatelly the future of most of them is not good!

 

Vasilissa Olga was sunked in WWII, in Leros! after many years, divers took out most of it! many small parts and things... like the bell, a window... were kept in the local museum, but the rest was taken to be melt and become kitchen vessels etc... :huh: there are still partos of it in the bottom of the sea, but...

I am wondering if this was ok for all the heroes who died when the ship was sunked! :laughing:

 

From the greatest Sub Greece had in WWII, Papanikolis, we only kept the tower! I wish they would had kept the whole ship! It was the only one who survived in WWII, and became the fear of Adriatic sea and the fear of the Italian navy!

 

Oh!!!! :laughing: look what did I found and edit my post here to put it too!

 

It is for the greek ship that was in Omaha....

 

"There have been reports that the Museum is considering scrapping or sinking the ship as an artificial reef" ! NO!!!!!!! :laughing: the last known surviving LSM in its original configuration???? Why??? :D I wish I was very rich (just rich will not fit in that...) and take it! huh!

Edited by GATOULIS

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Heh -- things got busy in my life and I hadn't had the chance to check in here. GREAT STORIES! Keep 'em coming! They don't have to be about ships or the sea or the military -- tell any story you think will leave an impression. : ) Stories about /travelling/caching/being in places you usually aren't in are a plus, of course. And Gatoulis, you can tell any stories you want. : )

 

(Oh, for what it's worth, I'm not in a sub. Can't, not yet, though the US Navy is starting to assign women [officers at this time, and I'm not one of those]. I would go in a heartbeat!)

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I liked these strange metal whistles that sound different but who can dive there to find them after.... 30 years??? :yikes:

 

BOSUNSPIPELFTRTCOMPOS.jpg

 

A bosun's call! Tricky to use correctly, but even moreso when you make the habit of throwing them in the sea first! ; )

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WOW!!!! what a beauty!!! is that an original navy whistle from a ship or not? it may be a souvenir one and that is why it has the dragons...

 

:yikes: Trust me... the poor officer was so red of ashame... that his head was ready to explode!!! :huh:

 

He managed to finish all the stock of these whistles, from the Sub!!! :laughing:

 

Oh, I thought you were in a sub! even if they are dangerous to live in... and you do not have a lot of area etc, they are amazing and life is exiting there! So.. for now... only women officers can go... probably not low officers like sergeants etc... right?

Edited by GATOULIS

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The method used on a bosun's pipe to create different pitches is to throttle or choke it with your fingers. the thumb is placed under the ring along the keel and the fore finger is along the top, the remaining 3 fingers are lifted or closed to vary the tone.

When I was doing American Civil War reenacting I toyed with the idea of using a bosun's pipe instead of a bugle for relaying commands to skirmishers. It's been awhile since I've choked off a call though.

Oh and indoor practice isn't a good idea. :yikes:

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Is that the type of whistle they were using in the movie Titanic? That was a cold scene....

 

Hmmmm.... that reminds me of the time when...

 

My freshman year my best friend and I decided to go to The Ohio State University for Michigan week (the week that Ohio State normally beats Michigan). The ritual up there is to.... ummmm drink and watch football.... and do whatever you think is crazy in between. Another ritual is to get into the reflecting pool on campus.... actually a decent sized pond.... the Thursday night before the game. So, a bunch of my friends and I ran over to the lake, de-clothed to our shorts and jumped in. Did I tell you that the air temperature was 15 degrees Fahrenheit? Or that there were 12 ambulances there.... just in case? Or that it was so cold that thick ice was forming on the sidewalk from people getting out and dripping? Or that people had to break the ice on the sides of the lake to get in? Or that there was about 3000 people there? Yeah fun.

 

So my friends and I jumped.... waded out to the middle for about 5 minutes.... sang some chants.... and then hopped out before hypothermia set in. Somebody in the meantime stole my best friend's pants. We ran back to the dorms (to raise out core temp). Before I got into the showers, I took off my shorts and stood them up. They were frozen solid... so they stood on their own. It was so cold.... but ya gotta follow the tradition.

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Oh... that story reminded me of the time when... we were were on a daily trip to Symi and Panormitis! Both are in the same island... Symi!

Panormitis is a very old and famous monastery for the Archangel Mickael!

On November 8, thousands are visiting the monastery!

 

anyway... we desided to go during summer! If I remember well, it was back in 1991! it was a beautiful day and not so hot! Trust me... if the weather is hot in Rhodes, in Symi it is even hotter!

 

We had a beautiful trip... on our way we saw swallow fishes, a turtle... and we desided not to go to Symi but to stay in Panormitis! the sea company had 2 ships so we could take the other one and return! (nowdays this can not be done!)

 

We had a great time there! We went to the monastery and then we desided to swim! Water is very clean there! I saw in the bottom of the sea, not in deep waters.... something really strange! There were hundrents of bullets from WWII! all were complete... I mean.. not only the shell, but the whole bullet!

 

I collected some and they were Italian! I could read in most of them the SMI on them! Of course there were many that were not in the sand so the salt destroyed them... these were easy to open! I opened one and the gunpowder run out like water! I put the powder on a rock and when it was dry I fired it! It worked! So the bullets were ok!!!

 

there were so many that I was almost sure that someone had droped cases of them in the sea! Maybe during war, or at the end... who knows...

 

I collected about a bag of a supermarket full of them!!! My mother started yelling at me, so I them back! ;) I only kept 2-3 and I still have them! One is full and the others are opened!

 

Time had come to leave... the ship was there and we entered! We sat on the high level, in the open area... it was much better than to sit inside the ship!

 

We were happy but tired! In 2 hours we would be back home!

 

when the ship started turning to get out of the bay... we realized that something was wrong! we passed the bay, we got out but the ship kept turning.... the good thing was that we were still far away from the rocks but... the ship was going there!!!! people started being worried! What what happent? We will hit the rocks!! the ship had a speed and it kept going to the rocks... we were so close now... people started screaming... the captain put the reverse speed to stop the ship... (we are talking about a small one... right?), he managed to slow it but black fumes came out and the people from the lower level said that they saw a flame!

A girl I knew was there too with her boyfriend... he was so afraid that he tried to jump into the sea! they hold him the last minute... while her girlfriend was yelling at him.... stupid... where are you going? you do not know how to swim!!!

 

We saw that the lower level (the people who were inside the ship) passengers were wearing life jackets! We were not!!! none came to give us any or to tell us anything!!!!

 

some started praying loudly to Archangell Michael of Panormitis to help us!

 

Anyway... the ship stoped so close to the rocks that if you were on the front... you could easily touch the rocks! We felt a small inpact under the water.... we definatelly hit a rock but the damage was probably small!

 

we left the area and everything was ok after that! We managed to come to Rhodes but we were going slow... it was the fastest ship for daily cruises here but we arrived last!

 

when we asked what went wrong (we knew some sailors from there) they told us that the steering wheel was blocked while they were turning! they mananged to fix it before anything bad happen! huh!

 

I can not say the name of the ship, even if it is not in Rhodes... and greece anymore! In 1996, I worked in the company that had the ship.... and... the ship was sold to a Japanese company! :P I do not know if it is still in use in Japan....

 

It was a strong ship so that happent only once! The ship was an ex German torpedo boat! When they bought it they had to "build" all the upper levels to make it ok for public, but not to destroy the stability of it!

 

anyway...that was the reason it was very fast too! It had very strong engines... :lol:

Edited by GATOULIS

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Great story Nikos... forgot that I had read that the other day.

 

That reminds me of...... Last december, for our honeymoon my wife and I took a 7 day cruise to St. Thomas, San Juan, and Grand Turk. WE had never really been on a big ship.... not even thinking, I booked the room on the very front of the ship.... this did not bother me after the first day.... once I got my "sea legs". We spent Christmas in San Juan..... beautiful town! We had such a great time there that we almost missed our ship. As we left port, we noticed a storm on the horizon. Our captain decided to "punch" through the storm, rather than wait. So, here we are trying to watch a chrismas show in the theatre when I realize that I am getting nauseated. I did not walk back to our room.... I ran. I prayed to the porcelain gods.... and continued to feel bad after an hour of lying on the bathroom floor. Finally, my wife and I decided to just watch a movie. That was christmas in a nutshell. :/

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Oh.... that reminded me a story when my father was young and unmarried of course (none iof us existed yet! :D), and he took the ship to go to Leros to ask officially the hand of my mother from their parents! My fathr's family were friends with my mother's family from a long time... my father and my mother knew eachother from their childhood, but after some time my father's family had to move back to Rhodes... so..

 

Anyway... he was dressed up nicely, he was shaved well... after all... the trip was not a long one... it took only 7 hours... (yes.. I know... :D )

 

but... this trip last 5 or more days!!!

 

the ship stops in other islands too, like Kos and Kalymnos! maybe at that time the ship was connecting other smaller islands with rhodes... like Chalki, Symi, Telos... I do not know...

 

anyway... the ship was old and small... after all... we are talking about the 60's in greece! :anicute:

 

Bad weather started and the ship had to stop to the next island's port until the weather was ok...

then again they had to leave... but once again the weather stoped them on an other island... all these days, the passengers had to stay in the ship!!! So... you can image how my father was after they finally got off... in Leros! :D

The family of my mother and my mon were expceting him in the port but they saw a guy in bad condition with a beard (not shaved).... :anitongue: what an official way to meet them... huh??? :anitongue:

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and... the story about long time voyages that in better conditions were sort... reminded me a story during the war!

 

Dodecanese islands were under Italian occupation from 1912 until 1943!

 

As policemen we had the italian police... probably military police at that time... the carabinieri!

 

In each island or station, they had a local dressed like them, making patrols, carrying a gun.... doing all the thing they did but he was actually the translator so both Greeks and Italians can communicate!

My grandfather spoke Italian so he was taken as a translator here in Rhodes! it was a good job and he could live his family!

 

At that time, Leros island was a huge navy base for the Italian navy! most of the island was with italian troops, and there was a special city so all the italian officers etc can live with their families! the city's name was Porto Lago (nowdays Lakki - the port of Leros), and it was taken from the first italian governor of Dodecanese... Mario Lago! The name may sound familiar with other places in Greece or somewhere else.. but it has nothing to do with it!

 

In leros there was a big hospital for all who belonged to the Italian army or worked in the stations...

 

since my grandfather was a translator... he could go there if something was wrong....

 

Some years later... he had an appendicitis problem and had to go for a surgery in Leros!

 

Days were hard then.... there was a war! WWII! ...ort war was coming... I do notknow... so they had to be careful!

 

He took his family and he was ordered to take a ship that was carrying weapons to the islands! Difficult and dangerous ship, but he had his orders! The sailors were Italians but they were good guys! He became friend with them... after all... the trip was a long one! Why? Because they had to travel only at night, without lights etc, they had to go to all smaller islands to give weapons etc... so...

 

The voyage was difficult! They were living with fear and death was in the air everytime they were hearing an airplane or an other ship was in the area! Finally ... one night they reached Leros! he thanked them and said goodbye....

The next day he had to go to say that he arrived at the police station in Leros... where he heard the news! The ship was discovered and it was sunked! All the crue went down with the ship! My grandfather and his family were so lucky!!!

 

He entered in the hospital and made the surgery but war trapped him in Leros! So he was transfered there as a translator! until the war ended!

When Italians left, they told him that if he wanted he could go to Italy but he said that he was Greek so he refused!

 

I have to tell you that my gradfather was Greek... ok? During the war, he was helping the allies when they were coming to make sabotage or to collect info! I know a story when he collected in one night ID cards from the families of dead greeks, saying that they had to give them to the police after the death... and he actually made them a favor... he secretlly went to the police station, changed the photos, used the official stamps and created false ID's for a british officer and a greek one who were there to collect info about the Germans! He did all then alone and with the fear that if anyone sees him... he was dead!

germans had info that 2 had come for that and they were searching the island! My granfather took them and sat in a caffe... the germans came and were asking ID's! The guys gave the false ID's, but the german was not convinsed 100%... so my grandfather showed his Police ID, the german was sure that the others were ok... and left! He actually saved them!

 

After the war, both who were high ranked officers (majors I think...) send a letter thanking him and wrote the whole story! My gradfather also gave info if he knew something.. so he was actually... an agent? I do not know... he was probably doing his duty for his country... Greece!

 

My uncle (the oldest brothe of my dad) had the letters but he didn't want to give them so my grandfather to be recognized for his actions durring the war! :anitongue: He didn't even give them to anyone else! he just kept them...

He is dead now... but when I asked my aunt about them... I got a socking reply.... when they moved to their new house... he trow all the old stuff, pluss these letters to the garbage!!!!!! :D:anitongue:

I wish I had them! all the thing my grandfather did was not to take a medal! He was doing it for his country, but... a recognission would had been good... except that... who can throw such a document??? This was the story of his dad! :anicute:

Edited by GATOULIS

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Ahhhhh that reminds me of.... When my wife and I were in gradeschool (yea we went to grade school together), we took a field trip on The Mississippi Queen. For those who do not know, the Queen is one of the largest riverboats ever made. It has a huge paddlewheel that is almost 70 feet tall. The Queen is not currently in service.... Last I heard, it was docked in new Orleans.

 

Our field trip took us up to the queen city (cincy) and brought us back upstream to Portsmouth Ohio. On our trip, we got to meet the captain, walk around the ship, and eat! It was probably the most memorable field trip that we ever took.

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Not so much a story, but I'll share my most treasured day at sea.

 

I was sailing with the Canadian Navy aboard HMCS Iroquois (DDH280) as the flagship for SNMG1 in 2006. We were in the middle of exercises in the Mediterranean Sea when we were scheduled to do a pre-dawn RAS (Replenishment at Sea). Everything that day went as planned and we were enjoying some well deserved down time in the long mids watch.

 

As we were called to RAS stations, we proceeded to the gun deck of the ship to set up our gear (Distance Line). Once we were set up, we noticed that it was during the Leonids Meteor Shower!!! There wasn't a cloud in the sky and the water at that time was as smooth as glass. It was one of the few times where everyone on the deck took the time to stop and appreciate the show that was being presented to us.

 

It was at that moment where all of the problems in the world seemed to disappear for a short time... it was peaceful and serene... one of the best days I've ever had at sea!!!

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Has a winner been chosen for this one?

 

AAaaa!!! that's reminded me a story when.... :antenna:;);)

I am kiding.... ok? ;)

 

Even if the cointest ended... I will post a last story....

 

My godfather who is also my uncle (my mother's brother) wanted to travel and see the world.. living in a tiny island during hard times in greece was not something nice...

so he desided to be a sailor! He found a cargo ship and left....

 

He went to many places... in canarian islands, in Latin america.... the ship was mostly making trips in the atlantic!

 

In one of his voyages, the ship fell in a hurricane! the sea was unbelievably rough... waves were huge and the poor ship was like a leaf on a river! it was trembling and you could hear the metals making noices like they were asking for help!

 

The wind that the waves had cut any comminication with land, the radar was off, and most of the cargo was lost! the ship was big but they were trapped half of the crue in the front part and the rest in the back side of the ship! they were all praying for mercy... but they couldn't do anything....

 

One night my godfather saw a strange dream in his sleep... he saw St. Nikolaos! the saint is the protector of the sailors, fishermens... for the sea men generally! He saw him wearing his gold clothes of a bishop in the front of the ship! The saint told him.... "do not be afraid...Keep going and you will be safe! I am watching you, I am protecting you and I am with you all the time.... you will soon see land!"

 

My Godfather woke up immediatelly! He and his father (my grandfather) used to go and paint, fixing damages etc every year to a small old church in Leros, that was dedicated to St. Nikolaos! My grand father's name was Nikolaos and... I took my name from him.. ;) I am Nikolaos too! ;)

 

The first thing that passed from his mind was the old church!

 

He run and told his dream to the captain! He was a religius man and believed him! after 3 days (I do not remember exactly) they reached USA! the ships was with great damages but everybody were safe!

 

My godfather was so afraid that... he left ship and stayed in the States for 5 years working in a pizza restaurant. then he came back to greece...

 

I forgot to mention that my mother and father and my grandparents saw the ship in the news, they were hearing about it and that they were in danger... they knew that the crue was greek and they were talking about the poor sailors, but they didn't know that it was the ship my godfather was in!!!

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Well... Jackalgirl's last visit in the geocaching site was on October 27th, so there is a possibility that she doesn't have access to internet... maybe she is in a mission...or an exercise....

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Howdy everyone!

 

A thousand apologies! Between work and home and a couple of other (military art) emergencies, I just haven't been able to do a whole lot online for geocaching. But I'm back now and trying to get caught up. I'll be looking over all the stories today and will have an answer for you tonight (that will be Sunday morning for folks in the continental US). Again, my apologies, and look for another post tonight!

 

-- JG

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Howdy again, everyone!

 

Okay, I've read through the stories, and they were all great. Practically every one of them made me want to say "that reminds me of the time..." which is what telling sea stories is all about. : )

 

I'm happy to say that the winners are...

 

 

 

First place: SYOTT

... for your story about getting to see the Leonids Meteor Shower at sea. It reminded me both of the time when we attempted astern refueling with a Pakistani ship (and a fuel ruptured, spilling fuel all over the supplies in a forward supply space, which then had to be emptied -- by hand -- by using all hands to shift all of the fuel-soaked stuff onto the fantail in a long bucket-brigade, and during which we discovered that, somehow, the whole crew knew the chorus to both "I Know Friends in Low Places" and "Ring of Fire"). AND it reminded me of the night I overnighted in the HMAS Anzac*. And it also reminded me of the time I had to stay topside during a night-time transit through the Straits of Hormuz and got to see a sky dirty with stars. I think that, because of that moment, I know /exactly/ how you felt, too. When you spoke about how the problems of the world (and, maybe, the specific problems of being in the military) went away, that really spoke to me.

 

*My fellow sailors kept asking the Australians "is it true you have beer on your ships?" The Australians kept asking us "is it true you don't have beer on your ships?" I just remembered going into the galley and seeing a huge loaf of bread and a bread knife. We have (pre-) sliced bread on our ship. I remember thinking, "Wow. They trust these guys with sharp knives" and feeling a little jealous, maybe. Yeah, I know you're Canadian and not Australian, so let me throw this in: Halifax was, while I was onboard, hands-down the USS McFAUL's most favorite port in the whole wide world. You guys in Nova Scotia rock. : )

 

Second Place: GATOULIS

... for your story about running into the storm on your way to basic training. It reminded me of the time I got caught in a storm in roughly the same area of the Med (well, not really, but the eastern end of the Med, anyway) and it was no joke. It bent the knees (braces) of the ship in the lower forward sonar spaces, it was so bad, and it was only the second time during my whole almost-five-year-stay that the Executive Officer put all hands not on watch in their racks for safety. Your experience was a thousand times more harrowing, plus your experience once on land sounds like getting kicked in the teeth for follow up (but even if you were in jail for being AWOL, at least you wouldn't be drowning, eh?)!

 

Third Place: mar-elendili

... for your story about your Viking excursion (and running around). The photos are AWESOME - you all look like you're having an awesome time, and I love all of the attention to detail going on in your journey. Plus, trips involving birds of prey are a total plus! : ) Reminds me of all of the times I have gone to reenactments or local "faires", only yours seem a lot cooler. : ) Are those torques for sale?

 

It was a really hard decision, seriously, not just between these three, but because of ALL of the stories (except yours, Avroair, grrrr. ; ) ). Thank you so much for participating!

 

If the winners would please shoot me an email to kat - at - grafikato.com and let me know 1) your address and 2) for Syott and Gatoulis, your first two choices of prizes, I'll be very, very, very happy to get your winnings packed up and in the mail. And thanks again for all these wonderful stories, as well as your forbearance for me being oh-so-very late with this! : )

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My dear Jackalgirl!

 

Thank you so much! :D congrats to the other winners too! :D

 

Oh... so you faced a storm in Med too! even if it is a "closed" sea... and not like the oceans... storms are so dangerous!!!

 

I never expected that waves were so strong that were hitting the ship like cannons!! water is extremelly strong but I never thought that it could damage the metal of the ship!!! We could all feel that when a wave was hiting us the ship was changing route without even wanting it!! no matter the size of a ship... it still remains a leaf in a river....

 

I was so scared! if something was going wrong... to fell in the sea or to enter in lifeboats was almost the same with going down with the ship! Who could survive in such a rough sea?? waves were so tall... huh!

 

Ok, from being drawned, I would prefer the army jail... (not going out for days... and do all the work...)! of course... if I was copleting 35 days of prison... I was olbiged to stay in the army more! if I had 36 days... I had to stay for one more day in... for example...

 

To be AWOL... it would cost me 20 days in prison at least!

 

BTW... I ended with 35 days exactly! :P No... not that I did something wrong.. but since I was a sergeant.. I was responsible for other soldiers too... who were not so.... Just imagine that I got 5 days of prison, even if I was off duty and at home... just because one of the soldiers in the camp was cought sleeping on his bed wearing his army boots! I learned that I was punished when I returned at the camp the next day!!!

 

We use to say here.. that when logic stopes.. the Army begins...! :blink:

I am wondering if that is in other armies too! ;)

 

Hmm... now I have to choose?? oh!!! that is sooooooo difficult!!!!

 

Hey... today I found a japanese coin!!! :) it was in the road!!!!

 

Anyway... I will send you an email.... :D

 

Thank you once again my friend! :D

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Not in the Navy myself, but a family member had a long and distinguished career in the US Navy.

 

My great uncle was in the US Navy for the majority of his life, signing on during WWI and completing his medical training at Great Lakes Naval Hospital in Illinois. He made his life in the Navy, settling on a small farm outside Annapolis, Maryland, in nearby Constant Friendship.

 

He rose to the position of Medical Commander, US Navy Pacific Fleet during WWII and departed the Philippines by submarine, while Douglas MacArthur, who suffered claustrophobia, departed on a surface ship. As MacArthur was highly aware of image even at this early date, he did not desire to show any weakness, so his dislike for Submarine travel was not well known - A ship had to brave the risk of submarines and Japanese planes to come in by night to ferry the General out.

 

I've searched for newsreels, but haven't yet found the two where my great uncle can be seen. While the Army was in Australia, before returning to the Pacific, he is feeding goats, as part of research on soldiers and sailors nutrition while at sea for extended periods, as in the war. (Did you think the goat was just a mascot? :anibad:

 

After the war my great uncle was Commandant of the Navy Medical facility at the US Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, until his retirement, as Rear Admiral USN, after more than 50 years in the service of his country. He and his wife are buried at the Naval Academy Cemetery at Annapolis, near the Navy Medical Clinic. I attended his memorial service and burial ceremony in June, 1989. The old sailor lived to be 100 years, 6 months. I think of him and his commitment to the service his country every November 11.

Edited by DragonsWest

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E-mail sent off... thank you once again!!!!

 

Congrats to the other winners!!!

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Wow, I was away for the week-end and I come back to see I'm third place!

 

Thanks a lot for the cointest, you've got my e-mail, and congrats to the other winners!

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Wow, I was away for the week-end and I come back to see I'm third place!

 

Thanks a lot for the cointest, you've got my e-mail, and congrats to the other winners!

 

and my dear friend... trust me... everyone will be very happy!! :laughing:

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Today I received the beautiful coin I won!!! I love it... correction... I adore it!!! ;)

 

Thank you so much Kat!!! ;)

 

Since I do not know if the other winners received their coins.... I will not mention anything about the one I receved! :unsure:

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Got the prize coin in the mail yesterday!!! It looks beautiful!!!! Thanks so much for the cointest!

Edited by SYOTT

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Cointest ended, thank you for playing. Closing this thread now.

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