Those Americans are still bragging about their big frigates!

I used Twitter a couple of days ago to bring this to the attention of the two biggest Patrick O’Brian fans I know — our own Bryan Caskey and my old friend and colleague Mike Fitts (who got me interested in the books to start with). And they politely gave me a “like,” which I appreciate.

I thought I’d post it here as well for anyone else who’s been to Boston and checked out this attraction — I know you have, Bud!

I enjoyed seeing it myself so much — how could I not, since it’s the oldest ship still commisstioned in the U.S. Navy, the Service in which I grew up — that on the one day that my wife’s unfortunate back problem prevented her from sightseeing with me, I went back to see it for the second time in three days. That first day had been glorious — we both went aboard with our twin granddaughters, and that night we went to Fenway to watch the Red Sox beat the Yankees! Boston doesn’t get better than that.

And if I lived in Boston, I’d probably go see the Constitution every week or so. (It’s a lot more affordable than ballgames at Fenway — I’d have to save that for special occasions.)

Y’all know I’m really into military history and as historical sites go, Old Ironsides can’t be beat. She’s alive! She’s still afloat! After seeing her that second time, I hiked up through Charlestown from the Navy Yahd to check out the Bunker Hill site. That was nice, and I learned things from it, but nothing compared to walking the living deck of one of America’s original Six Frigates.

Months after we’d been there, I found myself again rereading The Fortune of War, and really got a kick out of being reminded that USS Constitution was the ship that captured Jack and Stephen when it took HMS Java, and transported them to Boston as prisoners. There are several pages in which they walk the decks — and so did I!

And yes, I know they are — to you people — fictional characters. But Constitution actually did capture Java!

Anyway, I’ll go away now, and try to make myself read something new before the day is out…

Bunker Hill was fine, but didn’t come close to this…