Adventure, booze, and a comfortable bed are some of the luxuries offered by port calls. After all, nothing entices a sailor more than an opportunity to chat with their loved ones. But, if you ever wanted to crush an entire crew’s morale in a single fell swoop, simply promise them a port visit and subsequently cancel it. While sailors might not riot or mutiny due to their faithful allegiance to the United States; I’m fairly certain it’s on their minds at some point. Regardless, nothing drains the joy out of sailing more than waiting until the last moment to cancel a port call.
It’s no secret that sailors enjoy traveling to foreign countries. Traveling is actually one of the frequent answers given by young servicemen and women in the Navy when asked their motivations for joining. The Navy also has bases all over the world in countries such as Spain, Africa, Italy, Germany, and Korea, which entices young candidates to join. Military members in general often marry foreigners for that same reason, but that’s beside the point, the important part to take from all of this is that sailors love port calls. I can’t stress that fact enough.
Consequently, whenever a port call is cancelled for any reason, the overall morale of the ship’s crew plummets. Suddenly, work seems to take longer, the environment seems harsher, and the attitudes take a turn for the hostile among the crew. It’s easy to encounter arguments breaking out during those moments as emotions run high for everyone. Imagine if you will the saddest people you’ve ever met, those are the sailors after listening to the bad news. Because it doesn’t matter what port call it is if it’s the worst port in the world or the best one, the impact is the same…
Not all port calls are equal for the Navy. There are some countries that sailors don’t look forward to visiting. A few countries are simply too expensive or the visiting area is too restrictive to avoid running into another sailor every five steps. On the other hand, there are some countries that Sailors love to visit and one of these particular ports is in South East Asia. After all, any sailor who’s been there and hears the term ping pong show will unavoidably have a smirk on their face. Yet, the result of a port call being abandoned is the same for one person in particular… the captain.
For some reason, the crew seems to pinpoint the captain as the scapegoat for any scrapped port calls. It’s not unusual when the leader of an organization is held accountable for any misfortunes that befall the workers, but it’s important to remember that they aren’t always the ones making the calls. Whenever the captain makes that sort of decision, it usually came from a person of much higher rank. That being said, it’s unfair of the crew to take it out on the captain, but it’s how the Navy works and how sailors often operate. In a perfect world, sailors would know who made the decision, but it’s unfortunately above their paygrade.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.