USS IWO JIMA - We are somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean on day 2 of the USS Iwo Jima's journey to Mayport.
Today has been a mixture of work and play. The day started off with flight operations on the top deck including transporting several marines over to the USS Fort McHenry which is following close behind.
As the day wore on we got th chance to interview Executive Officer Captain Dana Gordon. In a few months he will take the helm of the ship which is currently under the direction of Commanding Officer Captain Jim McGovern.
Gordon is a South Carolina native but has called Jacksonville home since the 90s. Sunday he will be reunited with his wife and two daughters.
Around noon, many sailors got to relax. The hangar bay turned into "Steel Beach", it's what sailors call a huge picnic complete with barbecue, sumo wrestling, and karoke. Even Captain Gordon joined in playing ping pong with the crew and officers put on the apron served enlisted crew members lunch.
The Fleet and Family Support Center set up a table with various flyers and information for life in Mayport. Many sailors got their questions answered about their new home.
We are starting to find our way around the ship, which seemed like a maze the first day with the narrow staircases, hatches, and tight hallways. Just a couple more days aboard and we won't need an escort!
Too bad our trip comes to an tomorrow.
Sailors can already start to feel the hot Florida sun.