Whores At Sea

It was not unusual for a whore (or six) to sail in Nelson’s Navy, the “Wall of Wood” that protected England, in fact it happens/happens in most Navies. In a little known event, fortunately, it happened in my Division on a U.S. Submarine.

My wife and we’re enjoying a wonderful leave period in Hong Kong, a present from my Skipper for abjuring my Stateside leave period for an immediate underway to WestPac. When the time came for the USS Diodon (SS 349) to set sail for Yokosuka, Japan, the Skipper saw me at the China Fleet Club and asked if I would like to extend my visit with my wife while the Submarine sailed to Yokosuka.

Of course I would!

My wife and I eventually flew to Tokyo, I settled my wife in, and reported to my Submarine…only to be greeted by an irate Skipper who stuttered something incomprehensible, until I finally deciphered “an International incident.”

Calming, slightly, he continued: “Do you understand that Japan, our ally, is an insular nation, with a decidedly homogeneous population?”

Since he, a big liberal, and I had debated for months on end and he had banned me, briefly, from debating politics in the Wardroom, he and I both understood that his question was rhetorical.

“O.K Skipper, I still don’t know the subject.”

“Hemphill, YOUR Engineering Department brought two whores from Hong Kong into Japan! They used the After Torpedo Compartment. This is a Diplomatic disaster!”

Needing to get away before I burst out laughing, I said, “Right Skipper, let me go find out what happened.”

And I ran aft, trying to stay, actually, get under control, and no, I don’t know how the stripped-pants brigade handled it at the State Department. I do know I had no intention of doing a whole lot of work to discover the culprits.

I never did find out!

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