Saturday mornings underway are dedicated to cleaning the internal spaces of the ship. All the work throughout the week can cause dirt to build up inside the ship. To account for this, in addition to the daily cleaning, we spend one morning a week deep cleaning.
Saturday afternoons are dedicated to external surfaces. Even in the calmest seas, salt builds up on the ship. Sea salt, humidity and steel in combination create rust. At sea STOUT receives a washdown with fresh water once a week. Kind of like washing a car, we use a fire hose to rinse down the ship and brooms to help the salt over the side. Besides being good for the ship, it also affords an opportunity to get outside and enjoy the day with shipmates.
Between cleaning periods today we practiced firing our five inch gun. Some things at sea become routine, but I never tire of firing the gun. It is fast, accurate and effective. As one of our main weapons we routinely practice with it because our mission is to be ready if ever called upon.
We finished the day with another Saturday tradition, Pizza Night. One of the crew's favorite meals.