by Bernie Klashinsky "Klash"

We were fed well on the old Tribal's, but you know the old story, Stokers are like seagulls; when they aren't squawking or shitting, they are eating.

All the engineers were berthed in the After Lower mess deck in Haida, and below our mess was the Dry Provisions Store.  At least once a day one of the Supply ratings would head on down there to make up the provisions on the victualling list.  These people used to come on down to the Stokers Mess, and open the hatch into their store room.  They normally used to hang the padlock on the grab handle on the after bulkhead just above the hatch.

So we discovered that if we switched locks with an identical one, when the Supply rating left he simply snapped the lock on the hatch and left.  Later on when we knew he wouldn't return, we would use our key to open our lock, and go down and make up our own victualling list.

Anyone else on board knew that for the price of a few tots one could attend one of these great scran ups as guests of the Stokers, and nosh up on fried mushrooms, bully beef and beans, etc. All of these ill gotten gains of course were carefully hidden in the vent trunking in the stokers mess.  I often wonder if one ws to visit the old mess today could we still find some tins of food hidden there.

We did a four month cruise up the Great Lakes in 1963, and on the way home the Captain came along side one of the concrete dock walls in the Seaway, Snell Locks I think it was, and when the stern smacked the wall, it cracked a few frames on the starboard side of the gear room and loosened a few rivets and the plates.  This would eventually lead to our early decommissioning.

Our last full power trial we did 32.5 knots and with the rooster tail kicking up higher than the quarterdeck, she was quite a magnificent looking lady.

Going on watch during a storm was a real challenge for engineering personnel who stood watch in the gear room and engine room.  One would have to go up into the forward house, take the skywalk aft over top of the torpedo mounts to the top of the after house.  Then when there was a break in between the waves, you could nip down to the deck, go into the engineer's work shop. From there you could go down into the gear room and also there was hatch going into after end of the engine room.  The Tribals had a very low freeboard, and one could easily get wet if the ship suddenly made a sharp turn.

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