Good Morning World! I’m Baaaack!

Good Morning World!

What a beautiful morning. The sun is shining, temps are moderate, the air is fresh. It’s just a perfect spring morning and it’s Sunday. No work! (maybe) I’ve got some updates and housekeeping items to share today. There is more change on the breeze than the scent of flowers and grass.

What Is Going on with aroundustyroads? is my baby blog. I wrote my first post on September 8, 2010. I was based on Blogspot at that time. A couple of years later I migrated to WordPress. That was a pretty smooth transition but I was still new and didn’t have a lot of content. What I had can be found by clicking on the archive link in the side panel.

7 Years Later

Its been 7 years and I hope my blogging skills have grown with experience. What hasn’t changed is the look and feel of Lately I’ve been hearing more and more about successful bloggers, even meeting one, and I realized that I, we, needed to make some changes if I want to move to the next level. These successful bloggers have been at it 2-5 years. I’ve been doing this for 7 years and being left in the dust! What’s up with that!?


The  Changes in the Works

The first thing I did was move again. Like moving from Blogspot to WordPress, I moved to Bluehost to give me more adaptability. For non geeks, that’s like moving your cell service from Verizon to Sprint or from a 2 bedroom ranch to a 6 bedroom colonial. It was more painful this time so I need your help. If you are not getting email alerts, please let me know. If anything else is not working for you like it did before. Let me know that too. Enter it in the comments so we can work on getting it fixed.

New Look

While the dust settles on the move, I’m looking into upgrading our look. Take a look at one blog I found and like: Or this very successful blog . I just have to learn how to make these changes.

Drum roll Please….


A new companion blog.  No it is not replacing aroundustyroads. I can’t give up my baby but in trying to find out how to change our look, I got a new website built for me. It’s gorgeous. I haven’t started using it yet but will make my first post there in May. It will help me learn my way around a more advanced website.

One Last Change

Because of the current work load at my job. I am going to reduce my posting schedule for a couple of months. I am going to try to post 3 times per week. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. When things slow down at work  I’ll kick it back up.

Tell me what you think of all this. as the saying goes, inquiring minds what to know.





Its been a Long Week


Sorry I’ve been missing posts. I’ve been worn out from work. My goal is to get back on track on Sunday. Saturday I hope (weather permitting) to explore a “waterfall trail” in New Hampshire. With all this rain they should be really full.But it won’t give me any time to write. Plus I have some news I’m really excited to share but you need some background before I do. So see you again on Sunday!

Thanks for your patience.

It’s a Matter of Dress

Navy Dress Code hasn’t Changed!

When I was visiting the USS Constitution I was impressed by the way the sailors were dressed in period costume. But I was corrected. These may be vintage duds but the are still official Navy Uniforms.

The Pike and Sailcloth

When you approach the entrance to the dry dock you are greeted by a crew member. The one who met me was carrying a Pike. I asked him what it was and he said it was a boarding pike. He immediately demonstrated how the sailors would crouch, bracing themselves and point the  tip of the pike toward the gunnel. When the enemy tried to board they threw themselves on the sharp point. As he went on to say, we didn’t have to kill anybody. They did it all themselves!

He explained that his pants are made of sailcloth so if a cannon ball ripped the sail they could cut a patch from the legs of the pants.

The 1813’s

The crew in those days referred to their dress code as the 1813’s. It’s a official Navy uniform  and its wear is still prescribed in the Navy uniform regulations. Prior to 1813 and during the War of 1812, the  enlisted crew served in whatever clothing they owned when they joined the service.

The “uniform” evolved as crew members began to buy clothing that looked like other sailors eventually they all started looking alike, creating a “uniform” appearance.

There are many types of Navy Uniforms

My brother was in the Navy and over the years I got to see several uniforms. I know there are service dress uniforms,  worn for official functions not rising to the level of full or dinner dress. they are seasonal with white worn in summer and blue in winter. I’m partial to the white myself.

Service Dress Blues for male junior enlisted personnel are based on the standard Navy jumper in navy blue, colloquially referred to as “crackerjacks” because of the Navy-uniformed figure that adorns the Cracker Jack snack box.

Of course there are the Full Dress, Dinner Dress uniforms, Working uniforms, shipboard working uniforms and the list goes on. I think it would be a full time job to keep straight when to wear what uniform!

So that’s a wrap

I love the uniforms and I thought seeing these young men wear them with such pride, even through they could be mistaken for a costume, was very uplifting.

Nothing quite like a man in uniform!





Old Ironsides, The Oldest Commissioned Naval Vessel Afloat!

Old Ironsides , Still Floating after all These Years!

She is the world’s oldest commissioned naval vessel afloat. Every year she sails out of her berth at the Charlestown  Naval Yard to help Boston Celebrate the 4th of July. Well almost every year. She’s in dry dock to get a bit of a face lift. But hey, if I were 200 years old I hope someone would give me a face lift too.


The USS Constitution got her nickname Old Ironsides because cannon balls seemed to bounce off her sides like she was made of iron. Actually her hull is made of Southern white pine. However those wooden sides were lined with copper sheathing to prevent shipworm but apparently it also gave the hull extra strength. The sheathing was imported from England but the copper bolts and breasthooks were forged by Paul Revere.

Copper does not hold up well to seawater so from time to time the Navy brings the aging ship into dry dock to make repairs and restore as much as practical to her original state in 1812.

A Little History

The USS Constitution was launched in 1797, one of six original frigate class ships to start the new country’s Navy. She is most well known for her actions in the War of 1812. The battle with Guerriere earned her the nickname of “Old Ironsides” and public adoration that has repeatedly saved her from scrapping. Although retired from active service in 1881, there was no rest for this grand lady of the sea.

Through the years

Since she “retired” she became a museum ship in 1907. In 1934, she completed a three-year, 90-port tour of the nation. The Constitution  sailed under her own power for her 200th birthday in 1997, and again in August 2012 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of her victory over Guerriere.

The Crew of the Constitution

As a fully commissioned  Naval ship. The USS Constitution has a crew of 60 sailors and offices. These officers and crew are all active duty U.S Naval Personnel.

The Future

The Constitution enter Dry dock 1 in May 2015 for a 3 year restoration  project. The project is slated for completion on July 2017. She will be re-floated the night of July 23, 2017.