Nearly everyone I met was great. I'm going to love the people. I even saw that one of the guys who worked for me before is now coming to be one of the other chiefs in the division. He's one of my favorite stories, so I guess I have to find a new one, now.
Berthing--that's where everyone sleeps--is always inspected daily, and on smaller ships, personally by the Executive Officer. (Think Riker's job, for you trekkie fans.) If the crew's berthing wasn't clean and in good repair, the XO (Executive Officer) would start the shit-ball rolling downhill, and that's one very preventable avalanche.
So I'd check on the berthing my division was responsible for (and that my guys slept in), along with the leading petty officer (LPO) for the division--my second, if you will. I'd point out all of the things the XO would look for, having been the person in charge of berthing many times myself, and basically teach the LPO how to inspect like the XO. Then we can either fix it immediately, or arrange to have it repaired and thus have the answer on hand when the XO says "What are you doing about this?"
One of the things the XO always does is check the empty bunks. We put a cargo seal on them, mostly so that the pillow and blankie will be there for the next guy, and also to be sure that extra stuff doesn't get stored in there. As I was explaining that the XO will always open an empty, unsealed rack, I opened one. "And that's to make sure," I said, "that there's nothing extra in there, like this--" as I handed him the first of a stack of smut magazines. "Because the XO would want to know what they were doing here." I kept handing him magazines, one at a time. "And you don't want to be having to explain this to the XO." Meanwhile, the fellow is blushing, and agreeing that yes, he didn't want to explain it to the XO, and yes, he'll check all of the empty racks. Then I pull out the bottle of hand lotion, and for once, I'm silent. I hand that to him as well. "You'll take care of this, right?" By now, he's bright red, and he simply says, "Yes, chief."
I don't think I ever found any more magazines where they shouldn't have been after that. I wonder if he tells that story, too?
Monday is INSURV. That's a big material inspection, making sure that everything works like it should and is well-maintained. Busy week. Busy month. Busy next-three-years. But it's what I do, isn't it?
I can tell who has mostly been on big ships, and who has done small-ship time. The ones who have been on big ships ask if I have a communications or radar background. The ones who've been on small ships understand that when I say that I was the chief on a destroyer, it means that I had communications and radar under my charge. And interior communications, too.
Aw, crap. I realize now, that, except for a brief foray down to the Chief's mess, I ran around all day on just one level of that ship. Eeek! Huge! Monday, must find the gym. And the soda machine, although I won't be able to buy a coke onboard until I get my 'Navy Cash' card. A good time to switch to tea, maybe?