18 April 2012
whitecaps on the coffee
April 18, 2012
We decided to do a bit of tourism yesterday and that was in the form of a Navy Base Cruise. Good thing we did because today at the slip, the winds are 25 g 30kts and we have waves climbing aboard our swim platform. I had the dinghy tied astern but it stood a good chance to self destruct and take some gel coat with it. We are heeled about 4 degrees in the slip and rocking and rolling. If the wind clocked ten degrees either way, we would be somewhat sheltered. It is debatable whether or not it is better to be at anchor in some cove where the bow is to wind and the boat is pitching as opposed to pitching, and rolling at the slip. Nawh, it is better to be tied in 30 kts of wind if one can.
Back to the cruise, we took the one designed to sail past the Naval docks with a narrator telling ship names by numbers. We first passed the dry docks where a couple of Arleigh Burke guided missile destroyers (DDGs) were receiving bottom paint and repairs. One was the USS Bainbridge which was used to take out the Somali pirates. Gee, I thought the Nave must have some whippy dippy bottom paint that never needed replacing. Then we saw the active fleet in port. Am guessing here that there must have been fifty or so ships and subs in port. Among them were several DDGs such as the USS Cole (hit by a suicide boat in Yemen) which is now fully functional. The USS San Antonio, a specialized ship to take the Marines boating. The USS George H.W. Bush is in port. She is the last of the Stennis class supercarriers and just recently commissioned. They came in at around $5Billion each but supposedly the Bush was over $6.5 Billion. National treasure much!!! There were a few Los Angeles class subs. What a show. The Navy security guys wouldn't even discuss letting me take one out. Got my captain's license so I don't understand why they did not even wave.
Another local attraction is a huge sloop sailboat with a 160 feet mast. She is in port for repairs. Guess what color she is? Give up? Bright red and what a beauty. They snubbed me too. So for now, guess we will just hide below today and do inside projects. Scurv is now the master of the quick nap, the wind sprint below deck and a fierce competitor at tug of war. More later.
Pic is of some of the ships at Norfolk