Posts Tagged ‘return’

RETURN

I spent Sunday night in Jasper, Texas after spending the day with my dad.  I woke up yesterday (Monday) at 02:30 Central Time (03:30 ET). I tried to go back to sleep but by 03:00 it was obvious that I should get up. I departed Jasper at 03:45 CT and arrived in Slidell, LA around 09:30. I stopped by Newton Boats to check on the build status of Newton#5.  The new dive boat is in the mold.  After a 20 minute visit, I forged eastward and arrived at the Florida Sea Base at 01:15 Eastern Time.  I didn’t unload the car but I did have to tend to a couple of small tasks on S/V Escape.  I was in bed by 02:00.

I miss my family.

GALLEY REMODEL

I fully expected the remodeling of the Galley to be completed before my return.  It MAY be done by this weekend.  it looks very good and should be much more functional.  The Galley Manager, Captain Rae Murphy, is getting antsy to have it operational.

FUN WITH NUMBERS

Members of the Florida Sea Base senior management are working with numbers.  The program cost analysis and year end budget projection need to be completed in time for the Florida Sea Base Advisory Committee meeting 07 December.  In addition to the numbers, we are also working on the meeting agenda and updates for the strategic plan.

WEATHER

We are doing well weather wise but have the potential for some rainy days in the near future.  here’s our weather forecast from the National Weather Service.

Today: A slight chance of showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 79. Northeast wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Tonight: A slight chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. Northeast wind 10 to 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Thursday: A slight chance of showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 78. Northeast wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Thursday Night: A chance of showers, mainly after 8pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71. Northeast wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Friday: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 77. Northeast wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Friday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Saturday: A chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 77. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Saturday Night: A chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 69. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Sunday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 79. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Sunday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 71. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Monday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 79. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Monday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 70. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Tuesday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 79. Chance of precipitation is 10%.

The buoy at Molasses Reef is reporting the water temperature of 79ºF.

Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
PADI Course Director #39713
Aboard S/V Escape

I arrived back at the Florida Sea Base around 15:30 Friday.  It was very nice to visit with my family for a while.  I suffered from allergies much of the time I was gone so I was not as much fun as I wanted to be.  And the visits are never long enough.  I miss them all and will return as soon as I can.

This is Salem.  She belongs to my granddaughter, Juliet.  Salem loves the water.  She likes to drink from the dripping bathroom faucet and hops in the bathtub from time to time.  But she is fascinated with the toilet.

Capt. Dennis and Dr. Ellen Wyatt were kind enough to let me stay with them Thursday night.  We had a very nice visit for about 4 hours.  Their indoor swimming pool overhaul is progressing nicely.  Capt. Dennis’ mom donated a new ping-pong table to the room.  Dennis and Ellen seem to enjoy it thoroughly.  When I arrived, Ellen was down the street at Dennis’ mom’s house picking fresh oranges off the tree.

Everything seems under control at the base.  The boat was still floating.  The weather is a little cool under clear skies.  There have been a few wind events while I was gone as the fronts rolled through.  There has been nothing severe enough to cause any issues.  Our low this morning was 60 degrees.  Molasses Reef (near Key Largo) is reporting a sea temperature of 74.8.

Capt. Harman Harkema departed for Roatan, Honduras Wednesday aboard S/V Dutch Love.  The trip should take about 5 days.  He left with just one crew member so it’s going to be a challenging trip.  I will let you know when I hear from him.

The Divemaster Academy starts in just 15 days.  Study, study, study.  Swim, swim, swim.

If you are interested in working at the Florida Sea Base this spring you need to get in an application NOW!!!

Have a great day.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

Capt. Rich and I were at the 07:30 staff meeting.  Capt. Alex Bergstedt, Matt McClure and Dom Alesandrini did a great job of keeping the lid on the boiling caldron while we were gone.  Thanks guys, and thanks to all of the staff members for doing your jobs competently and following Capt. Rich’s #1 rule – Don’t be Stupid!

Tomorrow we will refocus on our annual camp “visitation”.  This used to be called an inspection but I guess some bureaucrat thought visitation sounded less threatening.  It is what it is.  A bunch of folks are going to arrive at the Florida Sea Base on Wednesday to audit our procedures.  The actual inspection, I mean visitation, is on Thursday.  This is a one day event (it could easily be a day and a half or two days) that requires the inspectors to split into three teams, two at the Florida Sea Base and one at the Brinton Environmental Center.  Friday morning they will make a report.  This will be my 11th “visitation” at the Florida Sea Base.  It is always hard to have a team of people come in and do their best to find some type of deficiency.  One year one of the inspectors was displeased because one of our signs read something like “No Unauthorized Personnel” but was supposed to read “Authorized Personnel Only”.  So we went across the street to the hardware store, bought the proper sign and put it in place.

I  was hoping to find more info on the Deepwater Horizon debacle to report on today but in all honesty I am still dragging and simply haven’t made time to catch myself up.  I am very interested in any news any of you can provide with references so I can take a look.  Just click on the comment button and type away.  I will try to do a better job and have some information to post tomorrow.  The bottom line for right now is the Keys – including the Florida Sea Base – are oil free and open for business.  Sometimes you just have to take things one day at a time.

Capt. Steve
Aboard S/V Escape

I’m back!  I arrived early yesterday afternoon at the Florida Sea Base and stayed in the office until after dinner time.  There is a LOT to catch up.  “Job security” some folks say.  A lack of manpower is another way to look at it.  Everything seems in order aboard Escape, EXCEPT I forgot to empty the galley trash before I left.  Needless to say, I have had all of the hatches open all afternoon.  Actually I was very surprised by how little stench was present.  I spent too much time in the office and so I didn’t get everything unloaded from the truck.  But there will time for that in the next few days.

Ice.  I was gone for 12 days.  It was so cold while I was gone that I still have ice in the ice chest that I put in the truck the day I left.  I have heard some horrible first hand accounts about the fish kill that occurred with that arctic blast that lingered about 10 days ago.  I’m glad I wasn;t here to see it.  The accounts make me even more concerned about what happened to our reefs.  I copied the following information from http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/data/realtime2/MLRF1.txt which is compiled by the National Data Buoy Center.  The columns didn’t copy well but I’m sure you can follow the information. What’s important is that the water temperature on Molasses Reef hit 60.6 degrees Fahrenheit (15.9 Celsius) at 0900 Eastern Daylight Time (1400 UTC) on 11 January 2011. That’s about 10 degrees (F) cooler than normal and is certain to have hurt the coral as well as the fish.

#YY  MM DD hh mm WDIR WSPD GST ATMP  WTMP
#yr    mo   dy    hr mn   degT   m/s      m/s  degC     degC

2010 01   11   23   00     360     5.7       6.7    14.3      23.3
2010 01   11   22   00     360     5.7       6.7    14.4      22.8
2010 01   11   21   00     360     6.2       6.7    14.0      22.8
2010 01   11   20   00    340     6.2       7.2    13.0      22.8
2010 01   11   19   00     340     7.2       8.2    12.1      22.7
2010 01   11   18   00     340     7.2       8.2    11.1      22.7
2010 01   11   17   00     340     7.2       7.7     9.1       22.5
2010 01   11   16   00     350     6.7       7.2     7.3       20.6
2010 01   11   15   00     360     8.2      8.8     5.9       16.7
2010 01   11    14   00    360     10.3    10.8    MM     15.9
2010 01   11   13   00     360    12.4     13.4   MM      MM
2010 01   11   12   00     360    11.8     13.4   MM      21.3
2010 01   11   11   00     360    11.3     12.9   MM       21.8
2010 01   11   10   00    360    10.8     11.8   MM       21.9
2010 01   11   09   00    360    11.3     12.4   MM       21.8
2010 01   11   08   00    360    12.4     13.4   MM       21.8
2010 01   11   07   00    360    12.4     14.4   MM       21.9
2010 01   1  1 06   00    360    11.8     12.9    5.8       21.9
2010 01   11   05   00    350    13.9     15.4    6.7       21.9
2010 01   11   04   00    350    12.9     14.4    7.3       21.9
2010 01   11   00   00    360    10.3     11.8    8.4      21.7

WDIR = wind direction
WSPD = wind speed
GST = wind gust
ATMP = air temperature
WTMP = water temperature

Time starts at the bottom and goes up.  Time is UTC so subtract 5 hours to get local time.

I am making preparations today to leave the Dallas/Fort Worth area and head back to the Florida Sea Base.  Instead of driving for 25 hours straight, the trip back will be broken into shorter segments.  I have a 5 hour drive to my parents’ house in rural Jasper County, Texas.  From there, I will drive about 6 hours to Slidell, Louisiana to visit Newton Boats.  My current plan is to drive about 12 hours the following day to Fort Pierce, Florida.  From there to the Florida Sea Base is about four hours (plus a stop for some groceries).  But, if I’m still feeling alert enough when I get to Fort Pierce there is a good chance that I’ll just stick it out and drive the rest of the way to the base.

I received a nice reply to yesterday’s posting from Dave Gibson of New Jersey.  He furnished a link to a cool blog that I enjoyed and thought you might enjoy too:
http://ptrescuedive.blogspot.com/search/label/Incident%20Response

Don’t forget those Girl Scout cookies or the 2011 Florida Sea Base registration lottery.  They are both in full swing.  Please feel free to register for an adventure of a lifetime at the Florida Sea Base and bring a case of Girl Scout cookies with you.