Monday, March 11, 2013

Report For Duty

The thing you learn about Oregon is that it rains every day, with few exceptions.  Before boarding a Coast Guard ship, my best friend Amanda and I got caught in a downpour.  Such a pretty face glaring at me as I take her picture.  She can't even keep a straight glare.  I love this woman, even when she's pretending to be moody.
Drying off, if you look at the window behind Amanda you can see the rain coming down.  In New Mexico you get five minutes of rain followed by sunshine.  In Oregon you get five minutes of sunshine followed by rain.  The rains aren't always heavy.  It's just mists and light rain typically.  From what I understand, they do have days of pure sunshine.  In the summer the temperatures can hit in the high eighties.  It rained every day that I was there.
A good portion of the time that I was in Oregon was spent hanging out with several members of the Coast Guard.  This was close to my last day in Oregon, and I was given a guided tour of one of their docked ships. 
I was actually being given an education at this point as to what each control does, the charting practices, and all sorts of other stuff that now reside in the back of my mind.
The Coastie beside me is David.  He's a friend of Amanda's and has been since at least her high school years.  I'm not sure how far back they go.  He and I are acquaintance friends.  I met him on this trip, and he is the reason I'm on this ship.  He offered to give me a tour the day I came in to town.  I was thrilled with the offer.

The precursor to the U.S. Coast Guard was the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service founded by Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in 1790. In 1915 the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service and the U.S. Lifesaving Service were merged to form the U.S. Coast Guard. Other agencies merged into the U.S. Coast Guard include the U.S. Lighthouse Service in 1939; the Steamboat Inspection Service in 1946; and the Bureau of Navigation also in 1946. The U.S. Coast Guard was transferred to the Department of Transportation in 1967 and finally to the Department of Homeland Security in 2003.