How was your day today? Mine was pretty good. We had some unexpected main engine repairs to do, I had spaghetti with clam sauce for dinner and this evening I bought a ship. More on that in a minute, but first,
Did you know it was bad luck to make a toast with water? I didn't. I learned that little tidbit last night from my President. No, not that President. I learned it from President Bartlett of the West Wing.
He's a very informative fellow.
I know. The West Wing has been off the air for some time now, but I have just begun getting into it. It's quite good. Better late than never.
On a unrelated subject. Nothing says Christmas like eggnog and bowl of nuts on the galley table. It's just like being at home.
No it isn't.
Our deckhand went grocery shopping and it seems he likes chocolate. For years I have underestimated the deliciousnous of those Ghirardelli chocolate squares. Just sayin.
I'm partial to the seasalt ones.
Ok, about the ship I bought tonight. The SS United States was a passenger liner built in the '50's.
Today she is cold stacked, basically tied up to a dock in Philadelphia, slowly rotting away. This was an interesting ship. It was designed by 2 two guys from Philadelphia. Taking a page out of England's history and learning from the fact that the first Queen Mary was also used as a troop transport from time to time, the Gibbs brothers got the cash to build this ship from the U.S. government.
In exchange, the government had some input since it would basically be in our merchant marine. If needed, the United States could be used as a troop transport. The hull design and engine room details were classified for many years. Suffice is to say, the SS United States set and still holds the record for Atlantic Ocean crossings, both east and west. She once crossed the Atlantic in three and one half days. To put that in perspective, I worked on a oil tanker in the '70s and it took us 11 days to go from Philadelphia to Africa.
Anyway, if you're still with me, she has been retired since 1969. She has changed owners a half dozen times, but today she sits, silent and dark.
I wanted to save this piece of United States history before it ends up in the scrap heap. So, tonight I purchased it. Well, actually, I bought 2 square inches of her.
A web site is set up, trying to raise the funds to be able to bring her back to life. At http://www.ssunitedstatesconservancy.org/ You can donate what you like, but at minimum you can buy 1 square inch of the ship for $1. On the site you can move your curser around the ship, they inform you if there is space available in that particular area "for sale", and if you want it, just click on it.
My first thought was to get 2 square inches of the engine room in my name, that would be logical since I work in the engine room. But when I met my wife she was working in the position of quartermaster and able bodied seaman and she spent a lot of her time in the wheelhouse, so, I figured I'd buy 2 square inches of the wheelhouse of the SS United States and put it in our names. TALK ABOUT ROMANTIC??
Anyway, that's what I did today. I bought a ship.