Lots of folks have not: Don’t despair. I spent thirty glorious days there back in ’86. After my first failed attempt at BUD/s, the Nav sent exiled me to the USS Callaghan DDG 994, a Khomeini-Class Guided Missile Destroyer.
It was called a ‘Khomeini Class’ because along with three sister-ships, she was built for the Iranian Navy (When The Shah was still the Big Man About Town). The ships were not yet commissioned, not ever close, when His Wonderfulness, The Ayatollah came back to hang up his shingle and Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, His Shah-Ness had booked out on his World Tour to cure cancer (his).
And naturally, after the Birds Sang And Shah went away, we just had to keep these ships for our own self(s). Such is History…
My Belov’d USS Callaghan
Anyway, that may be too much information for my purposes here.
After I had mustered onboard the Callaghan, I was informed that I was ‘One Lucky Squiddy Sonuvabitch’ (That’s ‘Naval’ parlance for ‘Sailor’.)
“Why? Why am I lucky?” I just had to ask, as I really wasn’t feeling all-that-lucky after having ‘rocked out’ of SEAL training only to wake up in ‘The Black Shoe, Haze Gray and Underway Gray-Hound’ Navy.
“You are lucky Son,” my Senior LPO informed me, “because we are going on a ‘World Cruise’. And most sailors spend an entire career without such an opportunity.”
“Oh Goody,” I thought, I done been ‘round the whurl’. So what? “Six months away from the only pussy I had finally managed to find for me in San Dog (San Diego). Perfect.” Didn’t actually verbalize that, by the way. I probably said something like, “Gee Wally, I love the idea.” (Without the ‘Wally’ part—I ain’t stupid, ya know.)
Now, I would love to write about this entire cruise, and perhaps I may, but for the purposes of this post, I am gonna skip to the middle, as this is supposed to be about Diego Garcia.
About Month ‘two-and-a-half’, we were cut offsevered culled from our Battle Group and ordered to do some ‘Independent Steaming’ in the Northern ‘IO’ (That’s Navy vernacular for “Indian Ocean.”) We were to rendezvous with the rest of the Fleet at some later unspecified date. (Presumably to us, after they had some proper ‘Liberty’ somewhere up in the Med… You know: Shit-Holes like Toulon France, or Athens, or Palma, Majorca.)
(Fun Fact: The Justified Reason for Our Wonderful World Cruise: We were to escort the USS Kitty Hawk, an old ‘Bird Farm’, i.e., Aircraft Carrier, to ‘No-Fuck’, I mean ‘Norfolk’ Virginia Naval Base. You see, The ‘Shitty Kitty’ just could not fit through the Panama Canal. Hence, we had to take the long way to her new home.
For the sake of some brevity, I will merely recount here that we got ‘Stuck’ in the Northern IO, as The Russians and the Iranians were acting ‘stupid’ and kept harassing us. (Fly-Overs by Ruskies, Iranians threatening to blockade the Straits of Hormuz. You know, typical Eighties’ shit and actually not unexpected.
Now like most U.S. Government Bureaucracies, The Department of the Navy had a budget. We spent so much time on ‘Picket Station’ (Making five knots up and down the North IO, ‘Patrolling’) that we had simply used up our fuel allotment.
(Fun Fact: In the U.S. Navy once Squiddies have not seen land for forty-five days, they get to have a ‘Beer Day’. Yep. That’s right. They chopper in cases of beer, laced with formaldehyde, as a preservative, don’cha know, and each Sailor gets two, count ‘em two beers. Gives a raging headache and ‘Old Salt’ Sailors would not even drink them; they would sell theirs to the neophytes. I was one such neophyte. And yes, I got the raging headaches. Never again.)
What to do?
Send us to port!
The ‘Port’ was Diego Garcia: A No-Where’s-Ville In the Middle of the Vast ‘Nowhere’ that is the Indian Ocean.
(Insha’Allah.. Joke: probably get killed for that one–Y’all know who I am here and on which side I fall upon–Atheist) I am not for lack of a term: ‘an Evangelical Atheist’. I do not care what you believe or don’t believe. My only further statement is atheists can be moral and good people, just like theists. We can also be immoral and bad people, just like theists. And we can be some kind of combination of the two; just like theists.
Hopefully, that above statement loses me not any of my followers (save one: my mother), But if so this is Karma (and no! I am not Buddhist nor Hindi either), then I will adopt the philosophy of a great ‘blogger-man’ I admire, respect, follow, and really despise:
http://aopinionatedman.com/ (ed note: May, 31st: I am no longer a fan of the Lemmings. i.e., I do not follow OM no mas, mainly because even I, cannot be that charitable) And that is all I am gonna say ’bout that. If you want some more piercing eloquence of the subject, I happily direct you to ‘The shitstorm that is my life: (she is brilliance in a bottle:
We differ, but we are kindred in our discourse of difference. Opinionated Man says this, and I quote:
“My goal with this blog is to offend everyone in the world at least once with my words… so no one has a reason to have a heightened sense of themselves. We are all ignorant, we are all found wanting, we are all bad people sometimes.”
Now. This is not in my manifesto, but I do find me subscribing to it more and more, day by day. Not sure why, but I do think OM has a valid point here: He writes for HIM.
This, I understand. And this is my new path. (Now all I need do is find some more followers… to hit the trail with me 😉 )
Therefore in the spirit of cleaning up hard disk drive space, I have nominated this post (the one on the next page–The ‘Hitch-Slap’ will remain as long as I have electricity and an internet connection) for permanent removal. (though I Love it daily..er…dearly..especially the video clip”
Of course with the beer stores, you pretty much have to get there right at the Crack of Noon, as most Southern States won’t allow them to open until then (or sell their most important inventory at any rate). But if you hang out in the parking lot just before, you can always beat the crowd.
Just be sure to park real close to the door. Oh and be damn sure to wear those Nike’s.
Where my thesis falls apart is with the Golf Course, which is an entirely Different Church, which will always be holding Early Mass.