Saturday, March 22, 2008

Brown Tree Snake at National Zoo

This is a very short clip, and not a terribly good one by me, of the Brown Tree Snake that lives in the Bird House at the National Zoo in Washington DC. There is a semi-screen between the display and snake. The snake is in the same display that is the home of the Guam Rail. The snake is in a much smaller cage inside bird's area. I've often wondered whether this set up created any anxiety for the bird.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Naval Station's Club Mocambo

The Air Force Times has a story about how, beginning March 10, those under the age of 21 can't "purchase, possess or consume alcohol on the Guam naval base.”

I did a double take when I read that and immediately thought it applied to those in the military. It doesn't, according too Lt. Donnell Evans, as reported by The Times:

“This change does not affect the ability of Navy personnel, employees or family members aged 18 to 20 to purchase, consume or possess alcohol off Navy property in accordance with the laws of Guam,” Evans said. “If sailors choose to drink, it is their duty to conduct themselves responsibly and within the bounds of Navy policy and local law.

When I was stationed on Guam, the Naval Station’s enlisted men’s club was called Club Mocambo. (Check out this matchbook cover). It has since been changed to Rumors – a name similar to a club in a suburban strip mall. Why did they ever change it?

Living off base, I use to make beer runs all the time to the base PX for local families. Beer cost far less than local stores and it was one way of showing gratitude for all the wonderful events, cookouts and fiestas that I was invited to.

Club Mocambo was a decent enough place but it wasn’t my first choice in entertainment, in part because I lived off base for most of the nearly three years I was on island. But being in the Club Mocambo felt too much like being on the base, and in a place where men outnumbered women by maybe a ratio of 20- to-one. But it did have live music, bands from the Philippines, in particular, that would play rock standards (i.e. Stairway to Heaven), and visiting U.S. rock bands. I can't remember any notable names.

Given a choice, I preferred going out to local places, with the Tree Bar at the Hilton my all-time favorite, but there were other places as well. The Tree Bar was a little pricey but worth it for the location and chance to meet a broad mix of people.

Guam emerging as critical communications hub

News reports about Guam getting a data center prompted me to contact GTA TeleGuam for a story. The story Dan Moffat, the CEO, shared was very interesting. The increasing reliance on the Internet and all it brings is also increasing demand for undersea cables. This makes Guam one of the most connected places on the planet. I wonder how this will shape the perception of Guam both as a place to live, work and vacation.