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Thread: The way we were?

  1. #1
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    Default The way we were?

    Is this the way we were? or some of us.

    These barrels always remind me of when I was on the EGYPTIAN in 1953, [ 66] years ago]
    We were in Famagusta, Cyprus and loaded a large barrel and it was stowed on the tween deck down No. 4 hatch.
    Some one thought it contained alcohol, so one of the lads drilled into it and took a sample, It was alcohol, and it mixed very well with the old BoT Lime Juice. that was only fit for brass cleaning.
    When we got to Liverpool we were sat in the mess room after tieing up. The Mate came in, "Who has been tapping that barrel in No. 4."
    "Not us, we didn't know there was a barrel.".
    "OK" says the Mate, "do you know what was in the Barrel?, it contains the body of a Dead Chinaman. to preserve him for transportation back to China on a Blue Funnel ship. "
    All hands were nearly sick, " I think you have learned your lesson, do Not do it again"
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    Default Re: The way we were?

    Well Nelson came back in a barrel of Rum so why not a China man in a barrel?
    Happy daze John in Oz.

    Life is too short to blend in.

    John Strange R737787
    World Traveller

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    Default Re: The way we were?

    How many times have you heard of events like this , most famous is Nelson, another one I heard of was known as sucking the Monkey. A monkey was brought back to the UK in a barrel of Rum or Brandy

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    Default Re: The way we were?

    Legend has it that after the Battle of Trafalgar, Royal Navy sailors drank Pusser’s Rum from a barrel containing Admiral Lord Nelson’s body on their journey back to England, hence the nickname “Nelson’s Blood” that is commonly used for Pusser’s Rum.

    A long used euphemism in sailing circles, and in some pubs and bars, refers to slurping liquor from a straw directly from the barrel. The practice is called “sucking (or bleeding) the monkey”, and also known as the title of this article suggests, “tapping the admiral”.

    Preservation of Greatness

    During the battle, the Victory had sustained a great deal of damage and a subsequent hurricane had taken the mast. Beatty made every effort to preserve the body for the long journey back to London. That trip was going to take almost two months.

    It was common knowledge that a corpse could be preserved in rum, but Beatty rightly decided to use a higher proof liquor – brandy. He mixed camphor and myrrh into the cask of brandy and placed the admiral inside. Once during the voyage, the gasses of decomposition caused the top of the cask to pop off, terrifying a nearby sailor.

    When they reached shore in Gibraltar, he moved the body to a lead lined coffin and refreshed the same mixture. Word was sent to England about Nelson’s death, aboard a bad pun – the HMS Pickle.

    Beatty said of his decision to use brandy, “…a very general but erroneous opinion was found to prevail on the Victory’s arrival in England, that rum preserves the dead body from decay much longer and more perfectly than any other spirit, and ought therefore to have been used: but the fact is quite the reverse, for there are several kinds of spirit much better for that purpose than rum; and as their appropriateness in this respect arises from their degree of strength, on which alone their antiseptic quality depends, brandy is superior. Spirit of wine, however, is certainly by far the best, when it can be procured.”

    Some say that when the cask reached shore, it was empty of all but the admiral. Legend has it that there was a small hole drilled in the bottom from which the sailors had sipped on the contents. Other sources say it that it never happened and that the brandy was still in the cask when Beatty opened it at Gibraltar.

    Whether the legend is true or not, the euphemisms and nicknames remain.

    Sucking the monkey

    In the Royal Navy, sucking the monkey, bleeding the monkey, or tapping the admiral was the practice of sucking liquor from a cask through a straw. This usually involved making a small hole with a gimlet in a keg or barrel and using a straw to suck out the contents. It was known for people to die from alcohol poisoning by this practice.
    "Our veterans did not forget about us .... Let's not forget about them." From Michael Levesque

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