43 – The USS Enterprise has no Scotch, Scotty

We have had many stranger crafts visit us from other worlds and bring us alien cultures. One such visitation was from the USS Enterprise, not the one from Star Trek, but it could have been.

USS Enterprise - kongwa2london.comAt the time it was the world’s biggest aircraft carrier and the first to be nuclear-powered. She, along with USS Long Beach and USS Bainbridge visited Mombasa during their around the world voyage.

This had a major impact on Mombasa’s economy, well for the poorer inhabitants as all the prices went up. Us locals were used to bargaining with the shopkeepers and the American sailors just paid what was asked of them.

USS Enterprise captain - kongwa2london.comIt was while out shopping that my parents met a group of officers and they very politely extended an invitation to visit their ship. My parents were taken out to the ship and given a grand tour, culminating with drinks with the captain. This is where things went sour for my father. Unlike the Royal Navy, all US naval vessels are dry ships and there was not a Scotch let alone beer in sight.

He couldn’t wait to be beamed ashore as soon as possible for a sundowner.

There was a revolution in Zanzibar that led to the overthrow of the Sultan and his mainly Arab government by local Africans. Arabs and South Asians were attacked, with the death toll of possibly thousands. As a result, the Royal Navy was sent to rescue British subjects and bring them to Mombasa. Amongst the refugees were friends whose children relished in telling me stories of how they found mutilated bodies on the beach.

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