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Can cruise ship drownings be prevented?   The Serious You: How Current Events Affect You

Started Dec-12 by Showtalk; 2169 views.

That's cool. Us landlubbers who have either never seen an ocean in their lives, or only seen glimpses of it from 37,000 feet through a tiny window in a pressurized tube traveling mach 0.85 over the shoulder of some snoring stranger in the next seat, generally find all sorts of tales of the sea to be fascinating but as alien to our life experience as tales of swashbuckling adventurers long long ago in a galaxy far, far away.

Although admittedly I did actually make physical contact with the Atlantic Ocean for about 15 minutes one late April afternoon in 1989, and only then because some snafu down in South Florida went off script during a 72 hour stay, and I found myself with a couple of actual unscheduled and unplanned hours on a busy itenerary.

Having driven the entire 1,783 miles to reach the location, I actually did see some bits of salt water along nearly half of the journey - such as the exit from the tunnel and a few miles over the Mobile Bay Bridge along I-10 while seeing the USS Alabama anchored in the distance.

So I had a spare pair of shorts in the truck, and with nothing to do for about 3.5 hours that had previously been meticulously planned, I just drove the few blocks to a beach - don't even remember which one it was, where there was parking and no obvious restrictions, put on my flip-flops, grabbed an empty canteen as almost an afterthought, and waded far enough into the gentle surf to actually achieve buoyancy and discovered that the salinity really wasn't as irritating to opening my eyes underwater as a chlorine laden swimming pool.

Then about 30 feet out, I opened the lid on the canteen, held it under, and let it fill with sea water and cap it. I still have that canteen full of sea water, still sealed, sitting on a shelf as a kind of once in a lifetime souvenir.

There was some trash and debris in the water, and I spotted a roughly 9 foot long piece of rough cut lumber around 100 feet from shore, about 4 inches x 4 inches cross section, some kind of wood that didn't look like something you could normally buy in a home improvement store.

So I grabbed hold of that piece of lumber in a rescue grasp, rolled over and swam back to the beach with the thing in tow.

The people I was with thought I was kind of weird, but I wrestled the prize out of the water, carried it to the truck, and put it in the back. It just barely fit in the bed of the truck diagonally, and it stayed there al the way home, where some 1,783 miles by road from where it had been fished out of the ocean, and 2,818 feet higher in elevation, it still sits to this day - after a brief weekend trip a couple of days later to an elevation of 9,600 feet MSL into a late spring mountain snowstorm to the parking lot of a ski resort in New Mexico.

After coming back from there, and it riding around on a couple of commutes to work afterwards, was when it finally got unloaded so it really was hauled more like 2,500 miles before being placed at its final resting place. Now it's kind of lost among other stacks of wood and metal material collected or salvaged over the years, and it's anyone's guess where that stick of lumber traveled from before I encountered it by chance about to wash ashore in south Florida in that lull after Spring Break but before schools let out for the summer.

Whatever species it is, it isn't pine or spruce or cedar - none of the kind normally sourced from the Canadian forests that go into nearly all wood frame construction in the US.

Anyway, having most of my mental perception of Miami and surrounds shaped by episodes of Miami Vice, I was almost disappointed to not have found a tightly wrapped bundle of cocaine or the corpse of an informant bobbing in the waves.

WALTER784

From: WALTER784 

Dec-24

I was born and raised in Central Florida. Went surfing at New Smyrna beach (just south of Daytona Beach) on the Atlantic coast every weekend. Took several deep sea fishing excursions and brought back a large blue marlin and numerous other fish.

While I was stationed in San Diego for Radioman A School training, I went down to La Jolla beach on the Pacific coast a couple of times.

Then they sent me to Norfolk, N.C. for satellite tracking schooling and I went to Willoughby Beach on the Atlantic coast again.

In Japan, I went to numerous beaches in most of the ports my ship was berthed at on both the Pacific coast and the Sea of Japan coast. Went to Pattaya Beach in Thailand more than just a few times on the Pacific coast.

And for the last 3.4 years of my 4 year tour in the Navy, I spent onboard ship living on the Pacific Ocean somewhere between Japan and Australia daily. 

And now, I live just a 10 minute drive from the Pacific ocean about 60 kilometers north of Tokyo so go surfing and deep sea fishing all the time.

So I guess you landlubbers who live too far to to get to the ocean quickly, a visit to even the Gulf of Mexico would be a real treat.

For me... I can't stay away from the ocean. 

FWIW

WALTER784 said:

So I guess you landlubbers who live too far to to get to the ocean quickly, a visit to even the Gulf of Mexico would be a real treat.

And that is about 10 hours of hard driving, which means a need to make it a few days to just get enough sleep to function after arriving, and then some recuperation time after getting back home.

But that' what the successors to Jacquez Cousteau are there for - to shoot high def video and cappers to grab so I can download and watch.

At least I can still handle going up to 11,600 feet MSL and not pass out, while those living at or very near sea level sometimes struggle with elevations around 3000 feet MSL.

Although even we would have difficulty even spending months to try and acclimatize to an elevation of 29,027 feet.

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk 

Jan-12

Do you have a Southern accent?

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk 

Jan-12

What body of water is closest to you?

WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784 

Jan-13

Showtalk said...

Do you have a Southern accent?

Yes, but I rarely use it anymore. I basically only used it around my grandparents and other relatives.

My father has one but doesn't use it much himself.

And even though I've been in Japan over 40 years, I still haven't lost it.

I do occasionally use it though to baffle Japanese who speak fairly fluent English. LOL

FWIW

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk 

Jan-13

They can’t understand your accent? How do you speak Japanese with an American southern accent?

WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784 

Jan-13

Showtalk said...

They can’t understand your accent? How do you speak Japanese with an American southern accent?

Ahhhh.... you've caught on to my little secret about speaking 5 languages.

I can speak French with an American accent, a Southern accent, a German accent, a Japanese accent and a French accent.

I can speak Japanese in an American accent, a Southern accent, a German accent, A French accent and a Japanese accent.

Etc. all the way down the line.

And oh, before I forget, I can speak English in an American accent, a Southern accent, a British accent, an Australian accent, a German accent, a Singaporean accent, an India accent, a Japanese accent and probably several other accents.

That's just it... it all boils down to pronunciation and whether you pronounce it properly so that they can understand or not.

Example: Pouvez-vous Français can be pronounced as Parlevou Fransay in English but the French will diss you for your pronunciation.

Ai canu speek Engulish uisu a Japanese akusento bato ito saunds sutorengi two Americans.

And there in is my secret for learning multiple languages. It's mainly in the pronunciation!

FWIW 

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk 

Jan-13

That would be fun to do.  I worked with a boy who was immersed in a Spanish public school,program but couldn’t read in English.  It became very clear almost immediately, he had learned to say his letters and to sound out words using a Spanish pronunciation for the vowels.  So I worked with him on English phonemes and taught him when he reads English words, to use English vowel pronunciations and when reading Spanish to use Spanish sounds.  The problem was fixed in three sessions.  He was 6 years old so young enough that it was easy to learn the difference.  He was also very hyperactive so the sooner I got done with him the better, not for me but for him.   

WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784 

Jan-13

Now that you mention it... and because I had learned Spanish before I came to Japan, I realized this but vowel alignment for Spanish and Japanese are the same.

In English, it's A E I O U.

In Spanish, it's A I U E O.

In Japanese, it's also A I U E O.

FWIW

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