Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Ride

The Old AF Sarge and the Old Retired PO1
Sandy Eggo, 09 April 2014
On Board USS Ronald Reagan
After a long trip across the country on Tuesday, a semi-late evening at Shakespeare's that same night and a crack o'dawn awakening on Wednesday, we finally got under way.

The WSO and a couple of retired military types, Yours Truly and my blog-buddy ORPO1 (who has already told his side of things here, in photos, some of which I have stolen borrowed for this and other tales to come) were off to sea on America's Flagship, the USS Ronald Reagan, CVN-76.

I love that lead-in photo, The WSO took it as we were heading out. Best thing about it? You can't tell that ORPO1 and I are "slightly" past our prime. We could still get the job done if we had to, but it would take us longer to recover. Hey, ain't nobody getting any younger!

Yours Truly takes over VFA-2's Ready Room

The WSO checks the schedule.

As the sun rose over Sandy Eggo and the Reagan slipped away from the pier...

The WSO and Yours Truly after checking out the Growler.

Looking aft you can see all of the jets which would launch today.
(Hhmm, how did that pretty lady get in the shot? And why is her husband looking at me like that?)

The Island in the light of a Sandy Eggo morning.

Honors were rendered by us as we steamed past Lex's final resting place.

Once we were out to sea, the fun began!

The Command Group is ready!
(Yours Truly, The WSO and ORPO1)
The crew is ready!
(Yours TrulyThe WSO, Bubbles and Mrs Bubbles)
Standby to launch aircraft!
The Plane Guard helo is airborne.
Launching the Hummer (E-2C Hawkeye of VAW-113)
Rhino launch preparations.
Cat shot!
(VFA-137 Kestrels - "CAG" bird, #00 - Double Nuts)
Buddy refueling.
(Don't tell Big Time!)
Ma Deuce Live Fire Exercise
(M-2 .50 caliber machine gun)
Grand Finale!
The Crew is pleased.
And in the photo (being held by The WSO) is the following, brought along by ORPO1. To honor Hizzoner. As it were.

Did we have a great time that day?

Why yes, yes we did!

More stories to come, here's a teaser:

If I were to say "Bubbles and the Winnebago".

What would you think that means?

It isn't what you think. (The Bullets know!)


  1. Awesome! And no, I'm not jealous at all. Not. One. Little. Bit.

  2. I KNOW you and PO1 had a great day!!

  3. Glad you had a great time, Sarge!

  4. Wicked Awesome. Lucky you to have such a well placed daughter. A pure pleasure to meet you both, by the way. Anyone have sound of the Growler at full roar? I usually hear them on final and don't notice much difference, but I'm told it is a loader than most roar.

    1. We watched them shoot that Growler off the boat, didn't seem any louder. Of course, we were not really comparing the engine noises.

      When those birds went off the front, you could feel it in your chest. It was intense!

      And it was excellent having the chance to sit and chat with you over a Guinness!

  5. Dear Sarge,

    You suck. I hate you.

    Love, Jim

    Seriously, it looks like you had a grand time. And tell WSO thanks from one member of a grateful nation.

    1. Heh. I get that a lot.

      It was an awesome time. I'll let the WSO know.

      Thanks for reading, Jim.

  6. Not bad, but you really needed "Snods" to give you a 'good' airshow... :-) Glad you got a day underway!

    1. Snods?

      The Internet failed me. I have an inkling about what you mean, but that's all. Enlighten us oh Great Cajun.

      Had a grand old time we did.

  7. Okay, I'm officially jealous. Back in the '80's I was the engineer responsible for getting our equipment to pass FCC requirements and so made lots of trips every year to
    'Sandy Eggo' (I like that term by the way) to the FCC site at Miramar. Every time I could break loose to check out one of the carriers in port, they either were not giving
    tours that day or I just missed it! The best I got to tour was a destroyer. And you actually got to go for a ride!! Yeah, I'm definitely jealous! Sounds like you had a great
    time, though.

    1. I can't claim credit for coining the term "Sandy Eggo", my blogging mentor Lex owned that one.

      It helps to have kids in the Navy to get these tours. That was my second "underway" on a carrier. I've got to tour four destroyers in my time - for work and because my son and oldest daughter were both on destroyers.

      A great time indeed!

    2. I never had any desire to be in the Navy but love the ships. Two bucket list items still unfulfilled - tour a carrier and hitch a ride on an LA class sub.

    3. I will keep your bucket list items in mind.

      I have, shall we say, "connections." Who knows what could happen?

      (Least I could do for one of my most favorite bosses of all time!)

    4. Thank you for the vicarious ride. What a great day at sea! I once heard a Navy Admiral state that the quickest way to defeat the Russian Navy was to make them operate one of these carriers.
      Thanks again......

  8. Most excellent pics. How did you manage a sunburn with all those clothes on? Enquiring Minds™ wanna know.

    1. Sunburn was on the forehead and top of the noggin.

      The rest of me was fine.

      When we went topside it was overcast, the show began and we kinda sorta forgot to go below and get the sunblock. Then the overcast opened up a bit.

      Nothing like a hazy sky and a strong wind to burn the heck out of ya!


  9. I finally read this.................yes.
    I cried a bit seeing the WSO with the coin...........................


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