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Saturday, June 23rd
2100 (ZD +4)
IN PORT - CHARLESTON, SC
Our typical In Port routine was the basic plan of the day, and hopefully will be tomorrow as well. Reveille goes at the usual time of 0615, followed by Breakfast at 0630 to 0730. Then Quarters takes place at 0730. Once that is done, Deck and Engine Training go over their lessons for about an hour while Utility Company will sweep and swab the decks, and collect the trash throughout the ship. Deck and Engine Maintenance have some small jobs to do for an hour or two as well. That all resulted in liberty being called for 2/C at 1000 and for 4/C at 1015.
Today Alpha Company had “Watch” so they were the ones ensuring the safety of ship and personnel. The roles in the engine room don’t vary too much from when we are underway, except the Main Engine is obviously not running, but a diesel generator is operating along with the A/C units, and RO (reverse osmosis) unit to make water. Those Deck cadets who would be on the bridge while underway, actually man the quarterdeck to control access on and off the ship. In addition, we have 5 Port Security personnel that roam the exterior of the ship ensuring that no one is trying to board the ship or threatening the ship in some way. From the security training the cadets receive, they know that their vigilance is a big deterrent to anyone targeting our ship. In addition, Charleston’s Port Security does not allow public access to the pier unless they have their Transportation Workers Identification Certification (TWIC).
There was considerable activity on the pier today as the cruise ship CARNIVAL FANTASY came in this morning and left this afternoon.
By the way, their definition of Cruise is somewhat different than ours!
After weighing anchor at 0441, our pilot, Captain Jay Stewart, MMA ’00, came aboard at 0544 and took us up the channel to Charleston. The first line went over at 0736 and we were all fast by 0815. It was a beautiful arrival day with cool temperatures and bright sunshine. Those on Deck Parade were treated with a great view of Fort Sumter on our port side and then downtown Charleston. They also saw the USS Yorktown at the Patriot’s Point Maritime Museum on the starboard side.
In addition to getting the ship docked and the gangway set, another major task when coming into port is off-loading the trash to dumpsters. This admittedly delays liberty for a couple of hours on our arrival days, but it makes a big difference in and around the trash room on the main deck. When that task was completed, liberty was called at 1200 for 2/C and 1215 for 4/C.
This evening there was a reception for alumni on the 03 Reception Deck. Several alumni from classes graduating within the past 10 years were present that made for a fun event. The upper class cadets took advantage of this great networking opportunity.
Hopefully more tomorrow about the sights in Charleston!