Originally posted by Simon Bolivar View Post
I appreciate all those who are taking the time to read my story but especially those who make a few supportive comments, as that has helped me carry on. Anyone one making a comment to this thread (EVEN JUST +1 or smilie) will be eligable to enter an cigar action next week. Enjoy.

Part 11: 23rd - 25th May: The Darkest Days

23rd May: Antelope was hit by an Argentine 1000lb bomb that failed to explode. This was due to the bombs being released so low (as the Argentine planes tried to stay under the ships radar), that the bomb didn?t fall far enough to arm itself. The RN tried to keep this secret as coping with the damage just the unexploded bomb made as it ploughed it?s way through the ship was bad enough but the BBC got hold of it & broadcast it on the world service!

th May: The Antelope was on fire all night, then a second explosion broke her back & she sunk. RFA?s Tristan & Galahad were hit by bombs & the subsequent fires caused carnage captured on film & witnessed later on the TV. The Welsh Guards were onboard & waiting to be put ashore, they were dressed but weren?t issued Anti-Flash hoods & gloves like the regular crew. This led to mass casualties with facial & hand burns that the Falkands has since become notorious for. They were initially treated at the Red & Green Life Machine.

th May: The Coventry was bombed & sunk, Broadsword damaged, Merchant ship Atlantic Conveyor was hit by Exocet & abandoned with the loss of 12 crew including the Captain & 3 vital Chinook helicopters. Later we heard the Captain had swum to a liferaft & some junior RN officer had turned him away as they already had the allocated number onboard. This was a real tragedy, the numbers on lifeboats & liferafts is a guide & they are designed to take many more in extremis. No one should be turned away, he should have been pulled in & then some persons transferred when they link up with another liferaft. As it was most were in the liferafts for very short periods, as they were so many ships in the area to come to the rescue. With the Galahad, Seakings used their down draft to blow the liferafts to the shore, where the injured were helped ashore by those stationed nearby.

I mention these losses to highlight that this was the most crucial period of the conflict. From here it could have gone either way. The British public could have turned against the losses & put pressure on the politicians to seek a political solution, more likely the politicians could have lost their nerve & withdrawn us from the fray. The costs were proving very high in ships & men. The pictures of the burns victims coming ashore must have wavered the strongest hearts. Britain hadn?t been involved in such costly conflict since Korea (which was the last time there was a RN Hospital ship).
The mood on the Uganda was at its lowest. One worry was although we had been buzzed several times now by Skyhawks & not fired upon, radars don?t see Red Crosses, when we went into Falkland Sound (Bomb Alley) to collect the wounded, and we were often the biggest ship around. Any Argentine pilot looking to ditch his load whilst being chased by a harrier, might just let his missile go in our direction, without realising what we were. The Coventry had almost fired upon us when we sailed around the corner of the Sound for the first time, as no one was warned we were out of our original Red Cross Box. This not being able to communicate with RN & other forces caused numerous problems throughout.

There was talk of use being on station for a maximum of 6/12, when they planned to have the personnel relieved & sent home, not to leave but to take over the hospital & sickbay positions that would have been vacated by our reliefs. I believe that?s what?s called long term contingency planning but would probably have best been kept to the senior officers. Amidst this chaos we tried to bring order to those in our care but after these three tough days something had to give.
I had received some mail form home, a lovely letter from my kid sister touched me deeply & some from the GF, which were informative but not passionate. Sindy & I had moved on from just hugging to snogging & more! Despite common misconceptions of sailors, I found it rather strange to be fondling someone wearing No8 trousers & must have mentioned this at some point.

It was driving her up the wall that I wouldn?t go any further but also I believe it?s why she pursued me rather than go with the any other of the lecherous matelots onboard; who would have been more than happy to please her physically. We had agreed that our friendship was important to help us through these times & that it would finish when we got back, as I would go back to RG.

It was after these three days, I don?t recall exactly how long but I was alone in my cabin, lying on my bed writing a bluey, when Sindy came into my cabin wearing her tropical white uniform. I was somewhat surprised as none of the nurses had worn this after leaving Ascension. She turned & locked the door, slipping her white dress from her shoulders, revealing a white lacy bra & knix, with matching white suspenders & stockings. As I gazed upon her looking so beautiful in the pale South Atlantic light, I could see the longing in her eyes & her vulnerability as she displayed herself to me.

I realised this was a watershed moment from which there was no return, I had a second to decide whether to pedantically stick to my vow of monogamy & ruin the relationship that certainly meant most to me at this crucial time or going with the moment.

As she came towards me I could see the need in her & gentleman, a medic?s job is to help the needy. That afternoon, for that brief magical spell, we helped each other to forget our worries & met our needs.

Marvin was living in Belgium that year & I must have bumped into him during a drunken pub crawl, as he published this that year:
?Baby I got sick this mornin?
A sea was stormin? inside of me
Baby, I think I am capsizin?
The waves are risin? and risin?
And when I get that feeling
I want sexual healing
Sexual healing is good for me
Makes me feel so fine, it?s such a rush
Helps to relieve the mind, and it?s good for us.?

?I don't make records for pleasure. I did when I was a younger artist, but I don't today. I record so that I can feed people what they need, what they feel. Hopefully, I record so that I can help someone overcome a bad time.?NME ? December 1982[22]<O></O>

I am not making a claim against his estate or anything but I swear that?s the last time I tell my story to a song writer, without getting a credit!

'Yes. And, with a little romantic tinkering could be turned into a very good film script'.

The above post was Tippex?s comment after part 3, it nearly killed me not commenting on this at the time but a good story deserves to come out in its own time. Hope you are patient enough to still be following Arf?