John, I agree. This site is really threadbare of conversation. I thought we were supposed to have a good following in the 'H' Association. Why isn't anyone talking?
I must admit, I have only attended reunions over the past 18 years, but it seems to be the same 30 or so people who attend every year. It would be nice to see a few more old mess mates.
My old mess was the 3M1 TAS mess and we had a good crowd in there. It would be great to see some of those old faces again. I remember the young lads I joined the ship with, lads like JP Oates, Dave 'G' (I think it stood for Gavronik), Barry Keats, Cookie (ex St Vincent), Pete Runciman (the combine harvester) and Blood. The older blokes who turned me into a sailor were blokes like Pete Cook, Dave Silliker, Ken Harrow, Bill Cartmel, Pete Fairweather, Knocker White, and Mick Papper. I think Mick was a bit of a villain, but he spun a good dit and made me listen.
I am informed that the navy isn't a shadow of its former self and there were more 'classes' of fighting ships 30 years ago than we have in the entire RN today. I am also informed that there is no such thing as mess deck camaraderie anymore, because modern ships don't have mess decks, what a loss.
I am so pleased that I joined the RN in days gone by, rather than now.