|Sub Captain's Stateroom|
My seagoing days came to an end when I completed my tour as Commanding Officer of the USS OHIO (SSBN 726) (BLUE). Kellie was nervous: “What am I going do with you around here all the time?" she groaned. “I need to miss you once in a while.” Luckily, my subsequent shore assignments kept me traveling across the country and around the globe for over 20 weeks out of the year, giving Kellie a periodic respite from my constant presence and an extremely large horde of frequent flyer miles.
|Carnival Splendor Accomodations|
This week is a bit of a role reversal; I’m at home while Kellie is at sea aboard a cruise ship, the Carnival Splendor. My guess is that her current accommodations surpass anything I ever had on a submarine. Officers are packed two or three to a stateroom and sleep in racks not much bigger than a coffin. The enlisted sleeping quarters are even more cramped. The situation improves once you become the captain; you graduate to a stateroom the size of a small bathroom, except it's not as nicely decorated.
I now realize why Kellie was so concerned when my sea duty ended. There’s a certain freedom to do what ever you please whenever your spouse is away for an extended period. It’s not like I’m running wild or anything, it’s just that when you’re alone, you no longer need to concern yourself with accommodating the needs and desires of another individual.
Here is a list of some of the simple, little joys that I’m rediscovering while Kellie is deployed:
- The house is silent, dead quiet, the only noise is the perpetual ringing in my ears that was formally drowned out by a much higher level of background noise.
- I don’t have to let the dogs sleep in my bed.
- I can leave the toilet seat up without fear of recrimination.
- I can let dirty dishes, glasses, and utensils pile up in the sink until I need them.
- After I wash the dishes, glasses, and utensils, I can leave them on the countertop for easy access.
- I get a break from being the tech support guy. No one is asking me why they can’t connect to the internet, print a Groupon, or find the file they just saved.
- Dirty clothes can remain wherever I drop them.
- Those ridiculous and completely unnecessary, decorative bed pillows can remain on the floor where they belong.
- No one feigns asphyxiation and yells at me to spray the bathroom with Glade Fresh Berries air freshener.
Maybe I should send Kellie cruising more often. Now, I just have to get this mess cleaned up before she gets back.