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A young naval officer was undergoing his first sea training on board a naval ship. His responsibility was to safely steer the ship away from the wharf and set it on course for a voyage out to sea. He carefully went through all the procedures of disembarking the wharf and checking all the vitally important points. Step by step he went through them all confident that he hadn’t forgotten to do a single thing.

Finally the ship glided away from the wharf smoothly, the command was given for the engines to be throttled to one-third speed for the first 10 minutes. Men were buzzing everywhere on the bridge and the young officer was feeling very good about his efforts as a call came from the captain. The captain congratulated the young officer for a textbook perfect disembarkation from the wharf and for doing it in a very short period of time. Then the captain added, "There is one thing you’ve forgotten though, an unwritten rule when disembarking from the wharf--make sure the captain is on board the ship before you disembark!"

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