In the Naval Aviation world, everything has pretty much been "done before". All these lessons learned are in print in a book known as, "Naval Aviation Training Operational Procedures Standardization", or NATOPS. All procedures within are literally written in blood and deviation from the written procedures can mean loss of Wings or worse.
But there are times and situations where new procedures evolve and once these new procedures are properly documented and presented to Authority, who approves the new methods and promulgates the emerging methodology as a Change.
Sometimes, a change will be an emergency change and is sent out via message in order to get the new word out before someone else gets hurt.
Otherwise, normal changes are sent through the mail and full listings of pages and their contents arrive in neat piles to the Squadron NATOPS Officer.
The Aircrew department then adds these changes to each copy of NATOPS in the Squadron. You will see a title of say, "Change 2, of 3". Makes sense.
When anything would suddenly get out of routine, we would gather the team together and say;
"Change Six of Three, to the Plan of the Day. WE are gonna do this...
This is how we could quietly/snidely point out that no one knew what was really going to happen or when.
So I am making Change number Three of Two projected. You might probably say that I am possibly FUBAR'd, but it is my ship and I can be as big a jerk as any of my betters.
o 03062009 0700Z
From: CNHF Jacksonville, FL
Subj:CHANGE THREE of Operation BARCO SHIFT:
1. Proceed to source of the St John's River. Travel South until you either find Kurtz or the Fountain of Youth. Loiter as required in the back country fishcamps, anchor at Silver Glen Springs and explore feeder rivers and lakes of the St Johns.
2. Augmentee Crew are not required and expenses for Off Shore safety equipment will not be expected to be authorized at this time.
3. Predicted savings of operations costs of over $3000.00 will be realized and can be reutilized in victuals and libations for the crew. Encourage that MAOGWAICAT spend freely and enjoy the exploration of a still wild frontier.
I went over the costs and time to be expended and came to a realization that I could see the local stuff, first. No crowds, no danger just open river and our boat. The fuel savings alone will finance months of filet mignon's. I was expecting to spend about 3K on fuel, then there is dockage and other emergent expenses. The Pirate's thing in Punta Gorda would have been 80 bucks a night plus dining charges and hundred thirty five bucks a head charge for the gathering, alone! (Hmmm, lessee, minimum four people X 135... Not.)
Now, the good deal about the MTOA, is the classes and seminars on boating safety, trip planning (Huh?) living aboard tips and so forth. Dogs and boating, the Great Loop, etc. And alcohol.
Would have been great fun. But also, "Lines". I can see it already;
For the Heads
For the Beer Tent
For the Luncheons and Dinners
For the freaking ATM
For the Locks in Lake Okeechobee
For paying the Dock Master
In the ICW (Intracoastal Waterway) as we all head home en masse
You get it, right?
After living aboard various ships, I acquired an aversion to standing in any line. This includes: Theaters, restaurants, concerts, DMV, VA, credit unions, etc.
I will miss a meal to avoid a line.
Commuting traffic? Fuhgeddaboudit. Move to the favorable side of town.
This trip up river will be great! No lines. For anything. All the boats will be on the coast, heading North or South. On the ICW.
So, tomorrow will be some varnishing and light maintenance. We already have everything we need for this journey. Just add food and libations and the significant other!