"H.M.S." Rose Index

By David Kessler

"...And what rough beast, swaggering through harbor, waiting to be drunk..."  

I'm back, and the past 2 weeks were fantastic!  I'll try to compose a list of story titles as I did before.  Unfortunately, where my stories of Scotland come in discrete units, my time at sea is one huge sleep deprived, tar smeared, blurred the edges mass of occurrences that is only now beginning to take on definite borders.  Out of sight of the land, I forgot to think about what the date and day of the week were.  Time became a way of measuring intervals (usually, how long I had before my watch either began or ended) rather than a way of knowing when in the day it was.

So here goes a first attempt to name the things that went on, in addition to things like setting and furling sails, hauling ropes, steering, studying, eating, and trying to find some time to sleep:

I helped win a pin-race, wrote a shanty, climbed to the highest point on the Ship, participated in sailor-antics on both sea and land, waved to an office worker on the 4th floor, rowed a longboat, fired on a coast guard vessel, solved a personal circus mystery, critiqued the USS Constitution, woke up far too early, stayed up far too late, took a 60-second shower, learned to splice line, found a tasty rum, wrote an essay while hauling up anchor, lost my gloves, had a birthday at sea, discovered "gold" on a treasure island, walked uphill, drowned out a bar's stereo system, saw a giant cetacean Muppet, learned the uses of the traditional sailors "kit" and the source of the traditional sailor's swagger, forgot about shoes and socks, had great success on bow watch ("Oh, how they laughed"), attended class while on a safety harness, napped on a cannon, saw the P-town nightlife, found a useful mnemonic in the high holidays, watched a lobster porn-video, discovered the "Icarus-effect", traded for a songbook, and learned enough vocabulary to find out what many of those shanties and sea-songs are saying.

The rest is kind of foggy.

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