Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Welcome Home!

[Crossposted from Unconsidered Trifles]. Welcome home to my old boat, the USS ALBANY (SSN 753):
NORFOLK -- The USS Albany, a Norfolk-based fast attack submarine, is returning home Monday after a six-month deployment in the Atlantic and Caribbean.

In addition to working with the U.S. European and Southern Commands, which oversee operations in Europe, part of Africa and South Americas, the crew made port calls to Rota, Spain, Port Canaveral and Kings Bay.

The Albany, a 360-foot sub that can travel more than 25 knots, can support special forces operations, launch strikes close to shore and perform underwater security.
Such an interesting deployment compared to my experiences "up North," though I did of course go to AUTEC in the Bahamas a few times.

Indeed, one of the best sea stories I have is how we were about to play "rabbit" for the JFK group when we pulled into Roosevelt Roads, PR. A couple of my fellow JO's got the bright idea to play a trick on the JFK air wing.

Dressed in uniform one evening, they borrowed a DOD van, flashed credentials at the gate of the air base, then made a beeline for the JFK air wing. Anytime they saw a P-3, S-3, or other ASW aircraft, they gave a sporty new USS ALBANY (SSN 753) sticker.

So we go to sea and start to play "rabbit" for the battle group--only to realize (very quickly!) that the JFK's aircraft are all over us. We couldn't come to PD without having to call "Emergency Deep" from aircraft screeching directly overhead. The CO was convinced that they were cheating somehow, but couldn't explain why they would be motivated to do so.

We could. And my shipmates explained their prank. The CO took it well and wasn't mad...I think he even chuckled.

Anybody have good sea stories &/or strong opinions about their Caribbean / South American deployments?


At 8:42 AM, Blogger jeff said...

How do you cheat against someone playing rabbit? Isn't anything to find you fair game?

At 6:40 AM, Blogger WillyShake said...

Because of water-space sharing, we were restricted to certain areas of the chart, with "stove pipes" to use if we needed to come to PD. Basically, they learned our starting position and figured out from there which 'stove pipe' we'd be in etc etc.

It's complicated, but basically, they had ways of learning where we really were, even though they were supposed to pretend that we could be anywhere.

Trust me, it was obviously that they weren't just DETECTING a new 688-I without "help". LOL


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