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Maritime Logistics Community News : December 2008
28 NAVY SUPPLY NEWSLETTER SPRING 2008 Storbies up Top Our travels began right after we posted out from the Navy’s premier training facility, HMAS CERBERUS, located at Crib Point, victoria. After passing out of category school on the 10 August 2007 we went to our different postings, three of us SMNSN Ricky Anderson, SMNSN Holly Johnstone and myself were posted to HMAS WATERHEN in Sydney. Amidst everything, it also had its fair share of rewards that we had enjoyed while we were on this trip up-top going to our Southeast and Northeast Asian neighbours on a visit promoting goodwill and friendship from the Australian people. I guess we were very lucky to be included in this trip, two weeks out of category school. The first port of call that we pulled into was Singapore, a tiny nation but very clean and efficient in its public transport system and law and order. After we pulled into the wharf, I experienced how it was to store ship in port. I got my opportunity while we were in Singapore and in the subsequent ports that we visited. Our second port of call was another tiny post, Hong Kong, with its bright lights and lively bars. We went to Hong Kong Disneyland and other tourist spots, like the Giant Buddha for sightseeing and relaxation after a hard day’s work in the ship. We also went to Stanley market to do some shopping and buy souvenirs for our family and loved ones. MY FORMER PROFESSORS DR. ASTERIA vILLALON AND DR. ELSIE RAMACHO FROM THE COLLEGE OF TECHNOLOGICAL EDUCATION NEGROS ORIENTAL STATE UNIvERSITY DUMAGUETE CITY. During the first few days at work, Holly and myself, were loaned out to HMAS PARRAMATTA by CPOSN Kathryn Holmes to help our fellow ‘storbies’, with their stores. We were working with WOSN Deb Butterworth (then CPOSN), LSSNs Daniel Whyte and Geoffery Smith, ABSNs Michael Beacham, Samuel Zavaleta and Naomi Atkins. During our transit to our first port of call, we had several workups and shakedown activities, like DC exercises and Toxic Hazards. We also had PT sessions, morning and afternoon. It was really great to experience those kind of evolutions in the sea environment as it was more realistic than the ones we had at HMAS CERBERUS. In those evolutions, you need to have first hand knowledge of the different mustering points that you have to go depending on the type of evolution. The biggest thing that I learnt during those evolutions was that you really needed to listen to pipes for important information. In addition, during the transit we were busy mustering inventory and returns in the different storerooms in the ship. The constant things in our line of work were the pressures and deadlines. There were times when the pressure became so overwhelming that I, and probably even my fellow storbies, had to control ourselves to prevent friction. Piles of paperwork, beating schedules, mustering, inventory, stocktaking and cleaning storerooms, putting in returns and manifesting them on sheets, tolerating the heat and the small compartments of the ship as well as stores issue and waking up early to prepare for a new day’s work had been the routine. There were also things that were not stores related but considered work in the ship like cleaning mess decks and communal areas and performing Quartermaster’s Assistant or upper deck sentry duties or assisting in the café and with cocktail parties when we were alongside. Third port of call was in Shanghai,China—described aptly by Napoleon “China, therein lies a sleeping giant, for when she awakens she will rock the world”. So far China’s economy is booming with western businesses taking advantage of China’s economy, work conditions and workforce. Some of the troops went in to tour the Great Wall built in the 5th century. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity for Australian Navy sailors to go sightseeing in one of the eight man made wonders of the world. The next port that we pulled into was not on the list but more of an emergency. We got to taste a little of America in the US Naval base in Sasebo, Japan. We stayed there for a day to effect repairs. Some of us explored the peaceful town of Sasebo, went into the shops and got to taste a little bit of Japanese and American culture mixed into one. As always the Px was a crew favourite. Then off we went to the highlight of our goodwill visit, which was in vladivostok, Russia. vladivostok is Russia’s largest port city on the Pacific Ocean and the administrative centre of Primorsky Krai. We had the chance to meet our Russian neighbours and fellow sailors. I can say that I was lucky to be in vladivostok because not every sailor or unit has had the opportunity to pull into this port on a goodwill visit. We experienced life in the former communist nation, wherein you can see the old building structures and statues of Lenin and Marx, the golden tipped shrines of the churches and the Russian Naval War Museum. We also had the chance to buy the authentic Russian winter cap for AUD$20. The SCAF also made a sizable donation to an orphanage in vladivostok. It was a great feeling to help other people in need especially those children in the orphanage. It also shows that we Australians have a compassionate heart. On our way home, the next port that we visited was the port of Maizuru, Japan. This town is known as a naval port. In Maizuru, we experienced the Japanese way of life, in restaurants and shopping malls and stalls. I met and befriended a Japanese bar owner named Katsu and a guard sentry of BY SMNSN ERIK J. CATAdA