Tuesday, February 7, 2012

It's Always a Good Day for Dolphins!

06 May 2011
Good Evening, Fellow Voyagers!
One of my correspondents (and a long-ago Shipmate) asked me a few weeks back if ALL I do out here is take photos, and whether I actually have a job here aboard Arctic.  Rest assured that I do indeed have duties aboard ship—and one of the great things about those duties is that they allow me to keep a camera handy for those moments when the unexpected guest appears! 

My responsibilities as a lookout, stationed on the bridge wings, place me in great position to catch those “Kodak moments”, and I am always careful to make sure the job comes first.  It does help that I’ve become the ship’s un-official photographer for most events, and that Captain Hartley and the officers tolerate my efforts and enjoy the results—especially the Operations Officer, who loves to email my photos of Iranian patrol boats and aircraft off to the Fifth Fleet Intel types!

Here are a few additions to the ship-board Aviary and Bestiary albums—we were joined this afternoon by an enormous pod (I would estimate 150) of dolphins, and several stayed alongside for twenty minutes or so as we cruised  westward thru the Gulf of Oman toward the Strait of Hormuz.  I also got several minutes of video of the “Games”, but I think that I’ll have to wait until I’m home and can post large files before I can distribute them (perhaps as a music video—anybody got the theme music from “Flipper”?).  In any case, enjoy these photos, and stay tuned—there’s more to come!

Tom Epps
Able Seaman
USNS Arctic
Persian Gulf

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