Forget Vegemite diplomacy - it's all about the Tim Tam

Published on Ms Gemma Haines (author), LSIS Jo Dilorenzo (photographer)

Location(s): Fort Hill Wharf, Darwin

Topic(s): HMAS Coonawarra, Exercise TALISMAN SABRE

Midshipman Lara Carr and Able Seaman Josh Smart treat the United States sailors onboard USS Blue Ridge to lamingtons and Tim Tams while alongside Darwin. (photo: LSIS Jo Dilorenzo)
Midshipman Lara Carr and Able Seaman Josh Smart treat the United States sailors onboard USS Blue Ridge to lamingtons and Tim Tams while alongside Darwin.

Now that’s one way to keep up foreign relations.

Royal Australian Navy members from HMAS Coonawarra paid a visit to their US counterparts aboard the USS Blue Ridge on Wednesday, 3 July, armed with some of Australia’s finest delicacies.

With arms full of Vegemite, Tim Tams, Caramello Koalas, lamingtons and toy koala bears, the eight members extended the hand of diplomatic friendship to their US hosts during an informal, goodwill visit to the ship as it was docked at Fort Hill Wharf in Darwin.

“They enjoyed the Tim Tams and lamingtons, but I don’t think the Vegemite went down too well,” Sub Lieutenant Ethan Wiseman laughed.

“Thankfully the Tim Tams and lamingtons took away the taste of the Vegemite - I think we won back some brownie points for that,” he added.

Sub Lieutenant Brianna McConville was grateful for the opportunity to get an up-close and personal look at a US warship.

“Not many people get to go onboard and see how they operate,” Sub Lieutenant McConville said.

“It was really good to speak to the sailors and see how they run their routines.”

The US crew in turn presented their Australian guests with freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies, cinnabons, and bottles of Tabasco sauce, which were eagerly welcomed by Able Seaman Josh Smart.

“The hot sauce is going down a treat!” Able Seaman Smart laughed.

The US 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge arrived in Darwin on 29 June for a week-long scheduled port visit ahead of its participation in Exercise TALISMAN SABRE.

Imagery is available on the Royal Australian Navy Media Library at http://images.navy.gov.au/S20130622.