See this ship? Isn't she beautiful? Her name is Mercy, and I called her home for a while. Seriously. I got to take part in Pacific Partnership 2010---a partnership between the US Navy and several NGO's (Non-Governmental Organizations---think charities.) Before she returns home to San Diego, Miss Mercy will have set port in Guam, Vietnam, Cambodia, Singapore, Jakarta, Timor Leste, Indonesia, and Australia. It's a humanitarian ship, basically a floating hospital. I was chosen (with about 80 other LDS folks) to represent Latter Day Saint Charities. Among us were all manner of medical people: from anesthesiologist to veterinarian. (My apologies if there were any medical people in the w-x-y-z category.) I left home on June 12th and returned July 1st.
Maybe the photo above will give you a better idea of Mercy's size. See that little, tiny boat in the lower right-hand corner? It's called a band-aid boat, and holds about 40 people. That was our shuttle service from ship to shore---about a 20-minute or so ride. Now, with the band-aid boat in mind, look again at the first photo of Madame Mercy. She's BIG, huh?
Check back for more details and photos of my adventure.