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What do you miss being a matelot?

Sweating me balls off in the lower-lower-lower magazine on the BLAKE, yanking 6"
bullets off the conveyor belt. They were smothered in grease, oil and sometimes
blood and bits of human flesh (i.e. fingers or torn off finger nails). Once you got
into a rhythm it was easier and not many got dropped. Give me carrying bags
of spuds down a gangway at low tide any day.
It was the nearest thing to a defaulters table that I could find.
Sometimes - you stood there and nice things happened...sometimes
it was the opposite. I would imagine that most of us have been
there for both.


My warrant was read indoors with only the skipper , MAA and CMEM present , mebbee it was cos I was in civvies .:D
While serving at Commcen Whitehall specifically, lock-ins for the whole watch at 'The Silver Cross' & gate runs to Smithfield & Billingsgate markets where drinking would commence immediately upon finishing the 12 hour night watch at around 0700 and where we demonstrated to our Metropolitan Police Oppos what drinking was all about. We never lost in drinking games competition - happy days...
I miss it all but happy with how my time after the mob turned out (standfast 3 wives and a partner 20 years younger than me - wanted kids and unfortunately ? a pussers vasectomy got in the way)

I enjoyed good ships as well

Puma (OK) cod war
Exmouth - Portland Squadron without the FOST nause
Plymouth - round the World Cruise 77 - best 9 months of my life
Rothesay - chips at Zavaroni's chip shop whilst 'perisher running' (swopped a few times to let sundodgers get a shower/dhobying etc)
Achilles - WI guardship twice
Argonaut - Typhoon hunting and sneaky beaky - few runs to States
Bulldog - Brilliant - different Navy - Bridge on auto pilot and no lookouts - laughingly classed us as a minesweeper, we were steel and towed our sonar - you couldn't make it up
SNONI - 2 tours - you can't imagine the hate overthere, was scared but excited - watching the pongos we were with, thick as they were, good laugh tho
Dusty70 - fancy joining the Plymouth Association? There are some great guys who served on her during the 70s?
Nope, got a good 100 members still, re-union 1st Saturday every October - last one was nice and messy and a few fellas off of the Fife joined us because their re-union same weekend was full would you believe it? Think it took place at Excellent or summat so they were limited to numbers..
If you are interested I can send you details?
Been there. Done that. Want the T-shirt?

Ditto and the friends I made, along with the many nights out, jollies and free trips lol
Apologies if this has been done before.

For those contract breaking matelots who I am one of amongst the rum ration membership, whose arse may belong to a civvy company but whose heart will always belong to pusser.

Had a nostalgic night stood in the flip flop drinking JC's, and we came upon the conversation, was it worth leaving before our time was done? and what do we miss.

there was a long list including, forenoon make and mends 24 hours off, free socks and batteries( have you seen the price of these items nowadays) sundowners breakfast beers then sunuppers, doing a job that made a difference but the biggest most important one that was mentioned was having an oppo you could rely on, he may want to shag my sister and crack one out over my mam but could always be relied upon in times of need,

So I put it to the membership what do you miss?

I shall apologise now for any mong spelling or punctuation.
I miss .... being a matelot on the jetty in my uniform so neat waiting for the picket boat to take me to the fleet........with the sirens that are blowing and the masthead pennants fly, the anchore rattles home when you hear me softly cry ......" you'll be lonely little sweetheart in the spring don't make me shit , for you those wedding bells will never ring ........ " don't make me shit ..when next you see our hero on the far flung battle field , the boys in blue are fighting for their gallant flag to shield , now a stray shot hit our hero and hit him in the **** and as he lay upon the deck you'd hear him softly grunt...... you'll be lonely little sweetheart in the spring don't make me shit .. for you those wedding bells will never ring, and as he lay there dying our sailor boy is crying ... "roll on my fuckin twelve."

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