We had an invasion on board the ship the other night and fortunately my new assistant, Sophie-the-cat, was on top of it to help with this report.
Let me explain: For some time I have realized that there is a lot going on within the interior of the ship, but I have no way of getting in there. For one thing the hallways are narrow and they have raised doorways that I would have a problem getting over. Also I do not want to go into the interior of the old ship. There may be food in there, but I don’t want to try and find it in the cramped space. There would be no way I could fly out since it looks like my wings are larger than the hallways and it makes no sense for me to try. Sophie, on the other hand, can creep around while she is looking for mice and send back reports on the activities. She filed the following bulletin from the other night.
Bob, thanks for inviting me to help out. Here is my first report from the ship. I will leave it to you to take care of the outside and limit my remarks to the inside of the ship. The other night just about sundown we had a large group of people come on board and go down into the mid-level of the ship.
I was looking for mice (they have been in short supply as of late) and when I got into the Number 2 ‘Tween decks’ area I found this crowd standing around. Before they broke up into smaller groups for the tours they all sat down for pizza. I thought about you and how much you love pizza, but didn’t want to try and snatch a slice and make it up the stairs. Besides it was dark outside and I assumed you would be asleep. After they ate they broke up into four groups and took off on a tour of the ship. I followed the tour that went into the engine room hoping that all those little feet would flush out a mouse.
No luck with the mouse. After they all took the tours they sat down for a movie and then went to sleep. It was quite civilized and I can only hope that if they have other tours they will flush out a mouse. Next time I think I will follow the tour that goes into the main part of the ship with all the old cabins. Maybe there will be mouse near the galley. Oh, one other thing. The people spent a lot of time in the ships store and while I was in there (I like to sit on top of the display boxes where I can see everything) I saw a small cloth gull with your name on it. Are you getting into the marketing business? I didn’t get a very good picture, but it does look like you.
Editor’s Note: Bob was very wise to recruit the cat to help us out with indoor reports. Sophie is very mellow and mild mannered and she and Bob seem to be able to communicate. Sophie does not present a threat to Bob since he doesn’t have any interest in her special cat food and she doesn’t have any interest in soggy old bread.
What Sophie saw was a group of school children, both boys and girls, and their teachers start a tour of the ship. It is a program on the ship called ‘Youth Overnights’ and it features a tour of the ship including dinner, a place to sleep, and breakfast before leaving the next morning. They all sleep in the old four level canvas bunks in the ‘Tween decks’ area of the Number 3 hold.
For more information on the Youth Overnight program please contact the ship for details. These bunks were installed and used to carry troops. Some of the Liberty ships were used as troop carriers and the ‘Tween decks’ area was converted into passenger area including a kitchen. Now the SS Jeremiah O’Brien uses this area for the ‘Youth Overnight’ program.