|Melville Marina, Portsmouth, RI - from Burma Road (Google Maps)|
I didn't even know it was sick.
It was off to Naval Station Newport to procure for the love of my life her entrée into those facilities upon a military base from whence we might purchase sustenance at a price sometimes lower than "on the economy". Sometimes not. The meat though, is generally less dear than at a civilian facility.
As it was Friday, I surmised that the good people who do those sorts of things might want to leave early. I mean it's Friday, right? Then again, it is a naval base, I'm sure they keep regular hours, regardless of what day it is.
So we hopped into my vehicle and off we went.
We arrived and expected to wait in line for hours / days / months. But in actuality it took only a few minutes for our names to be called.
(I did note that the Naval Service is now apparently commissioning young children, there is no way those two shiny new ensigns could be much over 15 years of age. Then again, I am older than most admirals these days...)
While there, the nice lady behind the counter mentioned that I might wish to get a new ID myself. Mine still had my Social Security Account Number (SSAN) printed thereupon and the Department of Defense had issued an edict at some point in the near past, that henceforth and forthwith no military IDs would display one's SSAN.
As I was there and all, I figured "Why not?" (I had also heard a horror story from one of my readers, another retired military fellow, that once upon a time he had had his ID card confiscated upon entering an Air Force base because it still had the SSAN on it. The security types in my old service have ever been anally-retentive.)
Now there is a common rule of thumb regarding any form of picture ID issued by any agency anywhere. The picture is always unflattering. To say the least.
The lady behind the counter joked that most ID photos look like you just got out of prison.
The Missus Herself had her picture taken first, it came out "okay," it wasn't something I'd frame and put on my desk but it wasn't hideous either. She looked as if she'd spent time in a minimum security place. You know the jails with golf courses and such where white collar criminals pay their debt to society.
Then my turn came.
Yup, prison picture.
Even worse, I looked like I had just been released from a Soviet labor camp. Seriously, my photo would scare a Russian mobster.
Now I've never flattered myself to think I'm "handsome," I generally settle for, "Hey, look at that guy, he's not hideously deformed or anything." Occasionally I have been assessed as "cute."
Not in that photo. No way.
But on the way back from the base, driving down Burma Road which passes along the western shore of "The Island," I saw something at the marina (see first photo) which piqued my interest and will be the subject of a future blog post.
A three masted sailing ship, tied up at the pier.
|The masts of the SSV Oliver Hazard Perry in the background.|
She's named after this fellow...
|Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, United States Navy|
I learned that from a chap who works at the boatyard where the ship was finished and where she now lies tied up awaiting her move to her permanent berth at Fort Adams in Newport. You can read that story here.
I had no idea that Commodore Perry was a native Rhode Islander and that he is now buried in Newport.
Learn something new everyday I do.
I must get down there and pay my respects. I've been on one frigate in the class which bears his name, and am connected to another. The connection is to USS CURTS (FFG-38) and I've been on board the USS TAYLOR (FFG-50). The WSO did her 2nd-Class cruise on the former, out Sandy Eggo way, and her college roommate's first assignment was to the latter. I had the opportunity to see TAYLOR when she was in Little Rhody a few years ago for the Fourth of July.
Got the A-Tour because we knew one of the crew.
CURTS has been decommissioned and is awaiting foreign sale, TAYLOR is to be decommissioned this very month.
|USS CURTS FFG-38|
US Navy Photo by PH1 Terry Cosgrove
|USS TAYLOR (FFG-50)|
US Navy Photo by MC2 Marcus L. Stanley
Don't get me started with LCS...
* That would be "Oot and Aboot" in Canada. Eh?