Orders to inactive duty are almost always followed by a cessation of activities in things nautical. This is especially true as regards navigation. The reserve officer may attend drills where the latest design of gas engines is discussed, or a lecture on the various branches of naval science, including navigation, but as time goes on the corrosive effect of non-practice begins to show. It is safe to say, and without casting reflection that a large majority of officers who have been ashore a year, engaged in pursuits unlike those of the service, will find themselves quite unhandy with the various tables used in navigation. They will wonder which column of minutes is to be used in angles over 90° and which column in interpolating for odd seconds. The elements in the Nautical Almanac that were once so familiar seem to have assumed strange proportions and the method of applying them becomes doubtful.
The Practice of Navigation on Shore
By Lieutenant L. L. Mills, U. S. N. R. F.