Friday, January 02, 2009


With no significant travel plans in our immediate future, I’ve been spending some of my free time aboard the museum ship USS Midway as a volunteer. I know, I know, the army taught me never to volunteer, but this is different. There are no bullets involved and I can quit anytime I want. And besides, my therapist suggested that I do something nice.

The aircraft carrier Midway is docked on the Embarcadero in San Diego and was opened to the public as a museum in 2004. I’ve been told that it is the second most visited tourist destination in San Diego. I’m not sure what the first is, but I bet it’s the zoo. Anyway the Midway has seen 4,000,000 visitors since opening. Many of the people who work there are volunteers, such as the docents and the Safety Team. I’ve joined the Safety Team, a group of folks who’s responsible for greeting the guests and ensuring that they have an enjoyable and safe visit. If someone gets injured we can administer first aid. Duties also include making sure emergency equipment is in good working order and being observant of potential safety hazards.

After a period of training, I began working one or two 5 hour shifts a week. With the exception of two stationary posts, at the entrance and exit, team members rove around the various areas of the ship that are open to the public. The best part, aside from being able to explore a really big ship, is interacting with the visitors. Yes, I have to actually be nice to people, which as many of you know wasn’t something required of me in my professional life. So meeting and talking to visitors from all over the world is my therapy, and I’m having fun.

For my friends and family, if you’re interested, give me a call and I’ll see to it that you can come aboard for free.

You can read about the USS Midway here:


tbourdage said...

A great piece on the Midway and a terrific blog too. Some really great pics of your various trips. Thanks for sharing!!
just another red Hat.

Jody said...

Hi Dana--
Great job on the blog! It's been nice having you volunteer with us on Saturdays too. Take care and I look forward to future blog postings.

Jody :)
just another red Hat

Gassaway's Adventures said...

Thanks Jody and "T-Bo" for the positive comments


kathymaypo said...

Hey Dana, I also volunteer aboard the Midway...this after chasing crooks for 32 yrs. for the Probation Dept. Come on up to Admin. reception where you will find me manning the phones on Monday afternoon.