Tuesday, June 5, 2012

TRANSIT OF VENUS

Captain James Cook, RN
Cook Memorial Point Venus

Today June 05, 2012 we will have a transit of the planet Venus across the face of the Sun.  NAUTICAL LOG does not have "hero's" but there are persons we admire one being Captain James Cook.  When serving as a Reserve Officer in the Hydrographic Department of the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) we were involved in the most complete survey of the New Zealand coast undertaken since Captain Cook's original work - which was remarkably accurate.  Throughout our career at sea his voyages influenced places where we sought employment such as New Zealand, Pacific island chains, British Columbia, Alaska and indeed the North Sea where James Cook started his career.


His first voyage in HMS Endeavor from1768 to 1771 was a combined expedition of the British Royal Navy and Royal Society so he visited Tahiti.  From a site known since as Point Venus he observed the Transit of Venus in 1769.  NAUTICAL LOG has visited there while in French Polynesia.


We refer to Captain Cook as RN but in fact he was a Merchant Navy Officer serving in the Royal Navy first as Master's Mate and then Master.  At that time the Master and his Mate's sailed and navigated a Royal Navy vessel and the RN Officers were the military officers wgho fought it.  Afterwards he commanded RN vessels in RN service surveying and exploring worldwide.  Today he would be a Master in the Royal Fleet Auxilary (RFA).


The transit today will be the last for 105 years.


Good Watch

Some 600 seafarers held hostage by pirates off the coast of Puntland, Somalia are most likely not too interested in the transit of Venus.  They would like to be rescued but nothing is being done for them in that regard.  Self-centered entitlement governments it seems could care less and the IMO only talks and then goes home.

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