Yesterday morning I went with my Dad and my sister to the Coast Guard Sector in St. Petersburg for a tour of one of the newer boats (the Crocodile) and the Coast Guard command center. Mr. Wong was our tour guide and he briefed us on what we would see that day and also on how many people serve in the U.S. Coast Guard and how many people the Coast Guard saved in a year and on what the Coast Guard does. I never knew this before but they protect the land from bad people who sneak drugs. You guessed it people; D-R-U-G-S. Drugs (a horrible thing). 😦 They also do rescue missions. For example: if some body goes fishing out in the ocean and they told their friend that they were leaving at 12:00 P.M. today and will be back at 12:00 P.M. the next day, and they AREN’T back by that time then the friend will get worried and call the Coast Guard. The Coast Guard will use a special program and enter in the time they left, what food, fishing poles, the time that they were supposed to be back, how much fuel they have in their boat, etc. This special program calculates the ALL that information that they put in and also the past, present, and future whether and tides to find out where the fisherman’s boat is, and more importantly, where the fisherman is. Anyhoo, after the briefing, we went on a boat called a Cutter, named the Crocodile. It was one of their newer/smaller boats they had. The Coast Guard people took us down to see the engine and it was HUGE!!!!! The boat was awesome, complete with beds, a toilet (and may I say that the toilet was nicer looking than those I’ve seen in the past… :)), a T.V., a teeny tiny kitchen, and a shower. We had the chance to ride a smaller boat (I can’t recall the name of it) and we all had to wear life vests. The Coast Guard ladies shoved a life vest over my head that was too small for me. They also didn’t know how it was supposed to fit on me. My sister refused to wear a life vest (I don’t know why…) so we didn’t get to go on that boat. They provided lunch for us all and they were Philly cheesesteaks and curly fries. We looked at bigger boats also, but didn’t get on them. I had a great time and I learned a lot.
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