This is the 'Brilliance of the Seas' one of the ships of the Royal Caribbean Line.
There is a feeling some sailors get akin to the 'Iron men on wooden ships', while they are 'wooden men' (faulty) men on Iron ships. There is no feeling better than a weather deck, under a star filled sky, listening to a sailor who has a guitar. It is an added thrill if he can sing. If not there are many men who will fill the bill or join him.
Of course the professional sailor, military or civilian, works an average of 12 hours a day, many times more. So the respid out under the sky, lying or sitting on a steel deck listening to a shipmate sing the Blues, Hill Billy or Rock and Roll is next to (but not quite) like having your love near.
I remember vividly on our first anniversary (at sea away from my love) and Sam Cannon singing 'Fraulein', but without the guitar. I found a space by myself and cried as a young husband missing my Fraulein, Sherry.
Below is the Super FUD taking off the Indy. ( I slept just under the jet on the lower right)
The words of my skipper when he asked me to remain on the Carrier the Independence CVA62 still ring in my ears. 'Why not stay with me here on the Indy boat?' My response was, "If you will allow me to bring my wife aboard sir, I will stay here forever." He wouldn't agree so I shipped out to GITMO.
Now today we are headed to a Cruise ship. I will dream of the days of my youth as I smell the salt air. But in doing so I will hug my love tightly. Aboard a civilian ship I don't work, I just enjoy both loves, the SEA and my LADY!
I will be AWOL for a few days, but I know I will think of you all on occasion, there is no question about that. But this is a cruise of a life time. Our complete brood except Corey.
My sister Shirl was invited, but she declined, she is a sissy, everyone MUST love the sea, Well at least methinks that.. Nah she is a home body. She is one of those folk, "Been here done that!"
So I know you will miss my wisdom and bright personality (like the plague). But I am going to enjoy Sons, Grand kids and Great Grand kids, while on a great cruise.
We will hit only two ports, Cozumel and Georgetown in the Bahamas. Fortunately I have my love aboard so I will not be looking for her on the pier as I used to do, as a young sailor, when returning from he sea.