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Terry & Dave Taylor

USS Lexington

Port Aransas, Texas: Again, perfect weather. Warm, but not too hot. No wind. Sunny skies with pretty wispy-white clouds. The sun glistening off the waves.

Gulf Waters Beach Front RV Community
Our day started with exercise (ugh). The RV resort has a raised
walk-way over the dunes (with beach grass and prickly pear
cactus by the way) from the campground to the beach.

Gulf Waters Beach Front RV Community
Crowded Texas beach

After a healthy breakfast of that organic oatmeal we found in Marathon, Texas a while back... we headed to Corpus Christi. On the way to the ferry, DT snapped this photo for your amusement:

Port Aransas
H E L P !  I'm being eaten by a tee-shirt & beach ball shop shark!

Port Aransas ferry
On the free ferry from Port Aransas to Aransas Pass. We won't take our bus on this ferry -
though they are sometimes allowed. Depends on the weather, tides, traffic, wind,
mood of the ferry master, etc... we will use the bridge when we leave town.

Today, we wanted to see some of Corpus Christi and tour the USS Lexington. The air craft carrier was in service from 1943-1991. Carrying 1,550 crew members, she has served more years than any other US carrier. The flight deck is nearly 1000 feet long and the USS Lexington can carry 1.5 million gallons of fuel! The Lexington was the first US vessel to sail into Tokyo harbor at the end of World War II.

USS Lexington
The USS Lexington

USS Lexington
Welcome Aboard!

USS Lexington
Flight deck

As soon as we reached the flight deck (a lot of stairs, by the way... and not really stairs at all... more like ladders) I sent a text message to my favorite Navy Top-Gun pilot, Captain Jim (retired), to tell him where we were. Captain Jim was so excited, he telephoned immediately to tell us the very first ship he ever landed on was the USS Lexington. Wow! He asked me how many planes were on the deck, and I told him about 12 or 15. He said, "Imagine landing a plane on that deck with 50 or 60 planes parked along the sides." I didn't think I could admire Captain Jim any more, but - wow - what a guy, eh?

USS Lexington
I snapped this photo with my phone and sent it immediately to Captain Jim. He loved it.

USS Lexington
Captain Jim first landed on the USS Lexington in an A-4 Skyhawk (such as this plane). The A-4 can
only
go 665 miles per hour. (Captain Jim much prefers flying the 1190 mph F-18 Hornet.)

We toured through every part of the floating airport that was accessible to the public on the $12.95 self-guided tour. It wasn't an easy tour - we had to climb up and down between decks on the narrow ladder/stairs. We were able to see the flight deck, the bridge, the Captain's quarters, the galley, medical and dental facilities, the barber, chapel, bunks for the sailors and the engine room. Captain Jim lived on an aircraft carrier for ten months - I can't imagine. (Our 45-foot motorhome is palatial in comparison to the thousand-foot USS Lexington.) Thank you, Captain Jim and every sailor who has served!

USS Lexington
The crew slept in "coffin bunks". (DT is six feet tall.)

USS Lexington
Interior passageway - step over, and duck your head too

USS Lexington
Up and down all afternoon

After our tour, we did a drive-by tour of downtown Corpus Christi. The entire shore is a miles-long pretty park, dotted occasionally with marinas. Well-maintained estates line Shoreline Drive.

Corpus Christi marina
Corpus Christi marina

By now it was three o'clock and we were starving! Luckily, there are several restaurants along the shore and - gee - they are seafood restaurants! We chose Landry's - a regional chain. If someone had dropped me, blindfolded, into Landry's... when I opened my eyes, I could have sworn we were in at our own Portland favorite, McCormick's. Dark wood, white table cloths - very inviting and classy.

Landry's Corpus Christi
Landry's Seafood in Corpus Christi

Landry's Corpus Christi
I had a grilled red snapper fillet

Landry's Corpus Christi
DT has angel hair pasta with mussels, shrimp and scallops

Okay, so my picnic idea never happened and now we have two half-eaten fish fillets in the fridge. No dinner tonight - we had our lunch so late. Maybe popcorn, as we are going to listen to the Duck basketball game on XM radio beginning at 9p Central.

Will DT be shaving in the morning?

Until my next update, I remain, your patriotic correspondent.

RV Park: Gulf Waters Beach Front RV Community. Sites are individually owned and may be rented while owners are away. We have a full service 50 amp site. We paid $48 per night.

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