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Did I mention how great the folks who work for me are? At 1500 [3 pm], when I suggested they button up what they were working on and finish tomorrow, they wanted to keep working! And so of course I let them. Had a description here of what they were doing, but decided not to share. Let me just say that they were aloft on the mast all day, and did some great work.

Quarterdeck watches seem both easier and more difficult than what I am used to. Easy enough to adjust, though. Imagine, though! When I asked about the qualification process, someone assumed it was my first ship! I turned enough for all three stars on the sea service deployment ribbon to show[meaning that I had done at least four deployments] and the Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist* pin, and said that this was my third ship.

Which is still pretty pathetic, given that I'm nearing the 18 year mark. In my defense, I will just state that I went to sea every chance I got without going back-to-back. By the time my stint on this ship is done, I'll be closer to half instead of one third of my career on sea duty. Heck, when I came in, ships for women were few and far between, and it wasn't until after 1991 that women made it to combatants.

So back to me and the qualifications...I spent a few hours on the quarterdeck last night asking a few questions from the qual sheet, mostly of the format "How does Boxer handle -----?"

My rack [bunk] is actually rather comfortable. But I'm crawling into my bed, now.


*The Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist qualification is required now for most of the upper paygrades. It takes you all over the ship and you end up with a general idea of what every part does and how it all fits together. It's actually rather fun.

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