Happy Groundhog day, in a nautical way

So yeah, it is national rodent meteorologist day…

And in celebration, here is a picture of the Ton-class minesweeper HMS Packington:

Why the connection?

After service in the Royal Navy for a few months in 1959, the little minesweeper was transferred to the fledgling South African Navy and recommissioned as SAS Walvisbaai. Under the South African flag, she served for 41 years during the darkest days of that country’s fight against Soviet/Cuban-backed forces to the North.

Still don’t get it?

The humble 153-foot/440-ton vessel was then sold on the surplus market for a song and subsequently used in 2003 as the R/V Belafonte in the Wes Anderson film The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, filling in, of course, for Jacques-Yves Cousteau’s famous R/V Calypso, herself the retired 136-foot Royal Navy minesweeper HM J-826.

Now you get it…

Packington/Walvisbaai/Belafonte is now a yacht, the Mojo, under private ownership.

Calypso, long out of service after sinking in an accident in 1996, is being refurbished under the direction of the Cousteau Society for use as a museum.

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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as Guns.com, University of Guns, Outdoor Hub, Tac-44, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms Talk.com, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at Amazon.com as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the U.S. federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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