By Lex, on Tue – May 10, 2005
Off to sea again. Two weeks and a bit.
We have to be vague, these days. Operational security – OPSEC. Mustn’t let the cat out of the bag, lest the bad guys fling RPG’s into the island from Point Loma * , or something. (If you go from the car carrier’s bow and move right about a quarter of an inch, then up until you hit dry land, then continue up almost until you come to the bay again, you’ll be on my headquarters. Which is where I won’t be, starting tomorrow. Because I’m at sea.)
Going aboard a frapping amphib. An LHA * , twitch, twitch. Which is like an actual aircraft carrier only smaller. A rough beast, stumpy and shallow-bottomed, over-fond of avid griping in anything like an actual sea. And! Carrying many Marines, God bless ’em and preserve ’em and keep ’em the hell out of my way.
Oh, I love them really. Pound for pound, nothing like them in a tight spot. I almost feel sorry for the poor stupid bastiches who are fighting them in western Iraq. Marines will not be beaten. They refuse. And they like nothing better than a stand-up fight.
So. I almost feel sorry. Almost.
Then I remember all the poor innocents who’re paying for the fanaticism of the foreign fighters. (Not to mention the willfully blind moral relativists ** who only want to tell the terrorist point of view. YGTBSM.)
And then I don’t feel sorry at all.
This could very well be my last at-sea period (but one). I’m due for shore duty next, and that’s probably the end of the trail, if no new thing arises. After this, I’ve one more ride aboard a nuclear powered aircraft carrier, and then it’s someone else’s problem.
I’m not getting nostalgic – just keeping you apprised. I’ve paid my dues at sea.
Oh, by the way – you’ve all been patient, assiduous readers – waiting for a real sea story. And I have one or two left in me, I promise. But time has been at a premium of late, and writing well takes both time and effort. So I thank you for your continued optimism, and pray I won’t let you down. Maybe I can stir something up in the odd hour or so at sea – something that won’t entirely discredit the service.
* 07-08-18 Old Links Gone; new one found – Ed.
** 07-08-18 Link gone; no replacement found – Ed.