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Old 24-03-2015, 17:05   #1
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What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Today I had a business meeting in Portsmouth. It's just 8 miles or so from Cowes -- as the crow flies. But it's a case of "you can't get there from here" -- to do it with public transport, you have to hoof it down to the chain ferry landing, then chain ferry to East Cowes, then a bus to Ryde, then a ferry across the Solent to Southsea, then another bloody bus, then another bloody ferry . . . more than 3 hours.

So I just threw off the lines and sailed there. And before I even got out of Cowes harbour, I spy a great bloody blotch on the radar down the Solent near Spithead. And no AIS return! WTF? So I put up the sails and settled in to see what's going on.

And here it is:

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Warship 71! The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt. At anchor near Spithead, and bristling with a deck full of F18's, AWACs, and nasty looking attack helos. Chattering with the Queen's Harbourmaster on Channel 11. As I passed by, a black RIB came roaring out to check me out. With the TP52 carbon spin pole on deck, they probably thought I was coming with a torpedo or something.

I had my meeting, I motored back (in a dead calm after a rain shower). Hey, what kind of crappy job is this, that I don't get to sail to work both ways?
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:29   #2
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Be nice. From what I've been reading lately you guys may want to borrow her for a trip down to the Falklands....
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:38   #3
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

I'm glad they didn't shoot you. you are too valuable a member here.
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:43   #4
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

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I'm glad they didn't shoot you. you are too valuable a member here.
Thanks for the sentiment!

I am also glad they didn't shoot me! They could have actually vaporized my poor boat without lifting a finger. It was actually slightly terrifying, passing a couple of cables by all that destructive power, even if it's ours (I am a Yankee citizen). Somehow, it doesn't seem entirely ours, all that power, or not mine, anyway.
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:44   #5
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Did you kindly inform them that their AIS was on the blink?


And are you scheduling anymore meetings in Portsmouth?


And do you need a boatminder while at the meetings - I here to help
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:53   #6
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

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Be nice. From what I've been reading lately you guys may want to borrow her for a trip down to the Falklands....
A bit of overkill don't you think? ... when this is the opposition..
Argentine Destroyer Sunk!

You reall must stop believing anything you read in the Sun.. in fact why are you reading the Sun when the Page 3 ladies have gone?
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Old 24-03-2015, 17:57   #7
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Well, that is unusual. And this morning on the island of Providenciales we watched a B-29 Liberator, I think (twin tail boom, right?_, with a fighter escort circling the island. No kidding.
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Old 24-03-2015, 18:00   #8
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

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. . . And do you need a boatminder while at the meetings - I here to help
Certainly -- and even more, I need crew. I berthed single-handed three times today. Smooth as butter every time, but if you have another person on board, there is vastly less running around the deck while the boat's not tied up, which is tiresome. And to add insult to injury, I had to drink alone this evening All on a 54-footer which sleeps seven

So if you're ever in the neighborhood, come on by.
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Old 24-03-2015, 18:10   #9
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

And they didn't have a look at or confiscate your camera?
Can't really tell but it appears you got fairly close, I'm surprised at that.
You probably sailed right over a baitball of furrin submarines on your trip too.

A few years ago, I just cruised by a US naval base (with a boatload of kin, including some very young ones), in a major ship channel, and unbeknownst to me a niece was busy snapping pictures of the installation (with a little camera that was triggering the flash too ). Of course the mean looking dudes on the black RIB came zooming out, armed to the teeth, and closed to my starboard stern quarter and slowly came in as they demanded some answers.
I didn't have any (unaware of the picture snapping on the foredeck ) so they were getting agitated a bit. They finally got the culprit to fess up, examined her camera (I don't know if they erased or took any film), and finally departed back to their dock after a stern lecture.

(What a boondoggle that NS was, it cost about $800-900 million+ clams to build from scratch, more $$ to provision and transfer units around. Then a relatively short time later, somebody BRAC's it and it was closed down. Then it was finally raffled off for a song, for IIRC, ~60-80Million (to a major oil co./rig builder.)
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Old 24-03-2015, 18:14   #10
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Sometime in the future the Roosevelt will be in San Diego for a three carrier crew swap thing. I'll try to remember to post a pic of all of them when it happens.

Sailing in SD you get use to the big grey things with no AIS. Its just standard operating procedure out here. You also have to deal with the big grey ships taking up good sailing lanes south of Point Loma with their "continuous turns to starboard", "well deck operations", "helo ops", and all the other amazing things our Navy does. I actually think being around the Navy and seeing all these things are just another part of the awesomeness that living and sailing in SD is. Love this place!
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Old 24-03-2015, 18:21   #11
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

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Certainly -- and even more, I need crew. I berthed single-handed three times today. Smooth as butter every time, but if you have another person on board, there is vastly less running around the deck while the boat's not tied up, which is tiresome. And to add insult to injury, I had to drink alone this evening All on a 54-footer which sleeps seven

So if you're ever in the neighborhood, come on by.
Roger that
I'll get to see how good you are and you will see how bad I am .

But we both will be OK with the drinks!
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Old 24-03-2015, 18:21   #12
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

None of the planes are real. The CIA sold them all to Iran. They are just mockups made of Low Carb recipe pasta.



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Old 24-03-2015, 18:22   #13
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

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Well, that is unusual. And this morning on the island of Providenciales we watched a B-29 Liberator, I think (twin tail boom, right?_, with a fighter escort circling the island. No kidding.

Not a B-29 if it had two tails (B-29 Superfortress is a "very heavy bomber", with one tail).
Depends on whether it had 2 or 4 engines. With 2 engines, a B-25 Mitchell medium bomber; with 4 engines, a B-24 Liberator heavy. Consolidated B-24 Liberator - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Was the fighter a vintage aircraft too?
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Old 24-03-2015, 19:37   #14
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Re: What I Saw on My Way to Work Today

Canibul-
B24 Liberator.
B29 Superfortress, the planes that dropped the A- and H-bombs on Japan, are VERY rare. A few years ago some group tried to recover one that had put down in Greenland in the snow, and the auxiliary generator in the tail somehow caused a fuel fire...and one of the last ones in the world, capable of flying in original condition much less at all, burned on the ground. All because some eager experts had a little generator fuel upset.


I had the pleasure to do a walkthrough on one of the remaining flying B29's a couple of years ago. It turns out they were equipped with revolutionary top secret fire control computers, that co-ordinated fire from the (retractable!) machine guns from multiple turrets onto one target. Another forgotten product built by (drumroll) the International Business Machines Corporation, when they were first playing with computers.


Seguing back to sailing...the early B29's were known as killers, the early engines were extremely unreliable and many splashed on return. Making the pilots damned glad to see sailors, or flying boats, whichever came first.
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