Wednesday, March 25, 2009

US Diplomacy at its Finest

We have been crazy busy the last week or so. This is the first time I have had to sit down since Friday. Last week, Nicole had her best friend from college, Aubrey out to visit. My brother Eric came down at the same time. He picked Aubrey up from the airport in DC and rode down with her. He also picked up Nicole's new bike from REI. We don't have an REI down here, so we had to order it up there and have Eric play Fed Ex. I will let Nicole go into detail on the weekend, but I will post one picture of my highlight.

Look at the size of those shrimp!

On Monday, we had a very special patriotic family home evening and simultaneously fulfilled one of my boyhood dreams. One of our good friends here is in the Navy and took us on board his ship--CVN #77 The George H. W. Bush. The George H. W. Bush is the newest and last Nimitz class carrier in the Navy's fleet. It was just christened in January just before Bush Jr. left office, so it still has that new carrier smell. This is foreign policy at its best; for those who believe in the 'speak softly and carry a big stick' ideology, this is the perfect stick.

Looks huge right? Unfortunately, huge does not do it justice. It's 20 stories tall.

it has 47,000 tons of steel and over a million pounds of aluminum.

it can hold 80 jets and 6,000 people--or about twice the population of Enoch (US 2000 Census).

it has two nuclear reactors.

We went on board and saw all sorts of cool things and we climbed lots and lots of stairs. It was by far one of the coolest things I've seen since we've been here. This is by far an engineering masterpiece. It certainly a utilitarian design--weapons are brought through the cafeteria up to the flight deck. I honestly can't think of anything that I would enjoy more than to sit down for nice bite to eat and as I enjoy my dinner watch some sidewinders or some JDAMs go by on a trolley on their way to fulfilling the measure of their creation. Below are some of the pictures we took.

Our good friends the Browns

Nicole going throug a hatch. There were lots of these.

A jet on the deck

Me riding the anchor chains

Nicole steering the boat with the backup steering wheel

Nicole Sitting in the Admiral's chair.

The deck at night

A gorgeous Virginia Sunset over the Bay


Bradwich said...

I bought a car freshener with the "new carrier" scent on it at the Army/Navy surplus store. Now I don't have to travel to the coast to enjoy that lovely smell.

Also, the fulfilling the measure of their creation line? Priceless.

Grampy and Grandma Dot said...

Great fun on the aircraft carrier. While visiting Chad and family for 4th of July, we toured the Abraham Lincoln (at least thats the name I remember) in Everett Washington a few years ago. Nicole didn't get close to the Admiral's chair. It is very much like a floating city. The runway looks a long way from one end to another, which is lucky for pilots.

Brown Family said...

Hope you guys had a great time. Jacob loves giving tours of the boat he still gets excited about it.