November 17th, 1987 – by: johnyb66
Neptune (my boss) addressing the captain (right)
On a break from patrolling we took a 2 week break to Mombassa in Kenya. This involved crossing the equator, invoking "The crossing the line Ceremony". This ceremony is an old navy tradition that every sailor must go through the first time they cross the equator. It is a great day and quite an experience. I believe the ceremony was first introduced in the mid 16th century. It was intended to prove a sailors ability to withstand long and hard voyages. The uninitiated are known as "Pollwogs" and those who have already been through it are "Shellbacks". The shellbacks take great pleasure in making the experience as unpleasant as possible!!.
On the day of crossing King Neptune boards the ship accompanied by Her Highness Amphitrite, Davy Jones, his judge, police, dentist and doctor.
Im under arrest and awaiting my turn
After neptune takes his throne the judge reads out the charges against each pollywog, who is rounded up by the police. The harder you resist, the harder the friendly beating received. Next I was covered in some foul gungy mixture by the assistants and taken to the chair where Neptune administered the most disgusting drink (medicine). The taste stayed with me for days after and I dread to think what was in it. Normally you would receive a syringe full, but as my boss was Neptune I was subjected to much harsher treatment and they poured the whole bottle in my mouth. After that I was thrown into the pool and given a severe dunking by the bears. My turn over, I emerged as a now respected Shellback.