Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I would like to bring back an old post T.I.N.S

This one is from March of 2009, but I found some more photos today to go with it.

Besides, old sea stories are always worth repeating, right?

10 March 2009


Q: Do you know the difference between a "Fairy Tale" and a "Sea Story"?

A: 1. One begins, "Once upon a time..."

2. The other begins with, "This is a No Sh&**$#" or ..."And there I was."

Both may contain the same amount of fact and fiction.

I might offer, "How is this for a build up?"

To that you might reply in one voice, "GET ON WITH IT!"

Ok, the place was the Caribbean Sea. The Ship; Strike Trawler Deyo, DD-989.

We were on our second Counter Drug OPS mission for 1992, and we were having a rough time of it. Flight quarters at 0530, lift off at 0545, fly until 1245 (missing breakfast and lunch) Relaunch at 1300 and secure from flying at 1700.

Fish call at 1730, the Ship would slow to two knots and the crew given the opportunity to fish. Hence the affectionate nick-name "Strike Trawler" Deyo. A big fishing boat with 5 inch guns and missiles. And a hundred fishing poles.

Each week or so, we would pull into some fabulous island for food and fuel. Usually Gitmo and Roosey Roads, but sometimes someplace cool. Like Curacao. (Pronounced kur-a-sow)

We pulled into Willemsted, moved up the river just past the swinging bridge, docked at the highway crossing.

By the bridge

As we entered, I spied a hundred foot Ketch, docked by the down town. It's still there, I saw it a year or two back.

Anyway, my buddy Lee and I went out on our normal reconnaisance for cheap beer and family style entertainment.

We approached the Ketch and hailed the American Captain, who was kind enough to invite us aboard and offered us beer. Of course, the Captain was hoping to get us to sign up for the day trip, $45.00 and two Planter's Punches with lunch thrown in.

The Captain of the Charter Vessel

After my third free Polar Beer, I noticed that business was a little slow. Especially since the Captain admitted that only six tourists were signed up for the next day.

I made like I was the world class sailor, and talked mucho grande about how I could get a number of genuine Sailors and return for a gran tour of the island, maybe at the reduced price of $25.00 per? With all the beer we could drink???


So Lee and myself continued drinking the free Polars, and concocted a plan of plans. We stumbled back to the Deyo around 2200 (Ten PM for you Land Lubbers).

Up and down the length of the ship we did traverse, but only 15 or so takers for this non-ship approved trip. None of the Airdales would have it, either,


(I mean that in the French way, Un homme, meaning Man.)

Next day, me and sixteen Men from Deyo sauntered up to the Sailing Ship. The six civilians watched nervously as we filed aboard, we hoped we looked like Piratical Desperadoes, as the Maidens were trying to press themselves out of view.

As I was the leader of this motley crew, I offered our assistance in getting underway and in the handling of the vessel at sea. Seaman La Mattina, of Deck Division took his place at the helm. Myself and the rest strategically placed our selves by the halyards to heave and pull the sails into place. We were underway by 1130, the trades-breeze was gentle from the East and the main brace was spliced.


I had never felt so good to be a Sailor..

Me in front of green shorts, yelling for every man to "heave and pull with a will!"

My friend Lee Bonawitz, heaving on a Main Halyard;

We were like Rock Stars for a day onboard that small ship. I think the six civilians began to warm up to us when they could see how competent the Destroyer Men were, on an old sailing vessel. We began sailing to the Northeast, looking for the cove that the vessel's owner lived.

Three meat barbeque.

And all the beer.

And we continued heaving and pulling. The paid crew just got out of our way and took a break.

You can kinda see the civilians hiding out in the upper right corner, by the helm.
I think they were getting a kick out of us taking the ship over.

I have more pictures, just have to find and upload.

We pulled into a little bay, and we swam ashore for the barbeque. A little snorkeling and frolicking, and back to the City Dock. We arrived around 2200. Tired and shagged out from the best day at sea, ever.

UPDATE July 2011

Me heaving a halyard

Cheesy pic 1 Deyo Sailors Sailing

Close up cheese

The Guy in red went to OCS later that year. No idea what his name was.
Owner of the Boat invited us to lunch, since no dinghy, we had to swim in for our free grub.

Aaargh; Ye must swim for lunch!  Aaarggh!

It's not too far...
From the pointy end of the boat

Heading back to Willemstad
Enjoying a sunset at sea with a Polar Beer Buzz

Mission Complete. What a great day on the water in the Spanish Main.

Next morning; we are revivifying and recovering from our hangovers. Seaman La Mattina is in the pink shirt.

We pulled into a little bay, and we swam ashore for the barbeque. A little snorkeling and frolicking, and back to the City Dock. We arrived around 2200. Tired and shagged out from the best day at sea, ever.

The ship was completely out of beer and rum. We all went back to Deyo with real sea stories, and had terrific hangovers for the morning.

For 25 bucks a person.



CB Tucker said...

Wow you really do have some stories! And I love the way you retell the tale. I can tell an evening with you and some beers would bring out some great stories! Probably some less family-friendly ones I imagine also.

Barco Sin Vela II said...

Hey CB; Thanks for reading. As for the less family friendly stories... Nope. After 1990 I was totally into boats and beer. The crowd I hung out with were married and loyal, so we literally were into boating and beer. I have several sailing tales to share.

Ken n Cheryl said...

Drank all the beer and rum ... sounds like a blast! We love finding a "booze cruise" whenever we can.

Barco Sin Vela II said...

Hey K&C; The Vessel's name is "Insulinde" and she is still working at Willemstad.

Buck said...

2. The other begins with, "This is a No Sh&**$#" or ..."And there I was."

The way I heard it is squids always begin with TINS and Zoomies use "So... there I was." You'll note that ALL my war stories begin that way. Cue up Tevye.

The new pictures add to the tale and I'm all in favor of re-runs, as you well know.

Barco Sin Vela II said...

Hey Buck; Ewe are correct, suh!

The Navy and Marines use all of the above, I was trying to keep my vulgarity down for the chirren sake.

Your reruns have inspired me, I cannot fib. Dust off some of those ol' photo albums and open up the mellowed memories!

LL said...

It would have been more fun if you'd had navy nurses along. I ran a not so different scam out of Pensacola once --- but invited nurses.

Barco Sin Vela II said...

--- but invited nurses.

Heh. This was before the integrated ships. One thing I did not need was attractive girls with me on a sailboat voyage.

I get the point, however. Run what ya brung!