Had the great opportunity to see one of my best buddies assume command of the USS Oklahoma City a few weeks back out at Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego. Since this was just a quick out and back weekend trip we flew solo...girls stayed behind and camped in Nana's camper!
Made a b-line for the airport right after work on Thursday afternoon...
First stop...Ballast Point Brewery for a cold one with some of the crew. Stepping off the plane into the cooler, non-humid air of San Deigo felt sooo good!
The next morning we were up early...had to get some breakfast at a great spot, The Broken Yolk, right across the street from our hotel in the Gaslamp before heading over to the naval base for the Change of Command Ceremony.
Not a bad backdrop for a ceremony. These are normally done on the submarine, but since she's in dry dock right now getting a full overhaul they had to do it on land.
Not too shabby a spot for a post ceremony reception!
There's the actual OKC...she's in floating dry-dock, up on cinder blocks and no propeller right now!
Stopped for drive-thru burritos on our way back downtown!
Got some dinner and great Mexican with much of the crew later at night too...
We spent much of Saturday over on Coronado, pretty much just hanging out on the beaches and in town. What a great area! Not before a nice run along the waterfront and a hearty breakfast at Cafe 222!
A few shots while riding over the bridge from downtown to Coronado.
First stop was a stroll along the beach the Navy Seal's use for training...pretty cool to be essentially the only ones out here. The Navy sure does have some nice beachfront real estate!!!
That's the Seal obstacle course...looks like a lot of fun!
Got lunch at a great dive bar/Navy Seal hangout called Dannys...
Having a look at the famous Hotel del Coronado. Reminded me a lot of Congress Hall in Cape May!
So while we had a great time its hard not to think about the responsibility that Thomas will have once the sub is out of dry-dock and back underwater for the next three years. Pretty amazing stuff! I'm proud that one of my good buddies is out there lurking beneath the surface, keeping us all back home safe and sound. Not easy to say goodbye to these guys for the next 3 years, but I see a lot of FaceTime in our future. Best of luck out in Guam guys!
Lastly...check out this great set of poker chips that all of the fellas went in on and got for Thomas back in June at our 20th high school reunion. Each submarine that he's served on is represented on a different denomination. He'll be able to break these out when he's got a little free time on board to relax!