The Seventies
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WestPac 78-79: It should have been fairly straight-forward, but we all know that it never works out that way. The Iranians decided the world needed a crisis. Hong Kong was out, periscope liberty in the Persian Gulf was in. Nothing new there!
 
Somewhere in that mess, shortly after a passage through the Lombok Straits, we had to cross the equator to get to the Indian Ocean, and suddenly hundreds and hundreds of years of Naval Tradition were brought to our attention, by Shellbacks, no doubt, who relished the opportunity to visit humiliation, embarrassment, bearing grease and what was left of midrats on our bodies.
 
Of course, the Pollywogs knew a price must be paid for their transgressions in the realm of Neptune, and queued up, if not eagerly, for their transformation into the most honored of all seafarers, the Shellback!
 
 
Images by Greg Ramsey, courtesy of Frank Allen.
 

 

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