newest stuff is at the top
I'm not gonna lie, when Annie said "class dismissed" at the Ring Ceremony, I almost threw my hat in the air. Wow, what a great feeling. Now that we've got our rings, it feels like graduation is just a few days away. 9 short months and we're outta here...
Had a great weekend with Celine, my parents, and her mother and father too. Mom and dad finally got to meet Celine's parents on Saturday and it went really well.
My parents, Ed and Candy, are on the left and Celine's parents, David and Brigitte, are on the right.
Celine had a little bit of trouble getting away from Benning for the weekend, but she made it and I picked her up from Newark at 8:20 Saturday morning. I originally had her on a flight that was supposed to land Friday evening at 6:15, but the sweet dudes at OCS wouldn't release her for the weekend until they found some lost equipment so I had to keep calling Delta and get the flight changed. She finally made it to Atlanta, but missed the last flight by a few minutes so she had to spend the night in the airport, but it couldn't be helped. We didn't get to go skydiving Saturday morning, but we'll go someday. We didn't really do anything Saturday until it was time to head to USMA for the actual ceremony, but it's all good. I was happy just being around her again after not being able to see her for almost 3 months. It's not easy being so far away from each other all the time, but we'll make it. She's only got two and a half weeks left in OCS and then she'll get her 2LT bars and head off to Quartermaster OBC. We'll make it...
The ring ceremony, even with the 100% humidity and 90 degree heat, wasn't all that fun, but it was definitely worth it.
Afterwards we went back to the barracks, did the whole open house thing, went to dinner in the mess hall, and then to the receiving line and dance at Ike Hall.
So yeah, that was my ring weekend. It didn't go anything like I planned, but I got to see the girl, our parents finally got a chance to meet each other, and everyone had a great time.
Ring weekend tomorrow. I'll find out this afternoon if Celine will be able to make it so everyone cross your fingers that they pass their crew served weapons inspection at Benning today. She's almost done with Officer Candidate School and literally hours away from being in "Senior Phase" where they get pass nearly every weekend and from 6 P.M. until taps to do whatever they want every day. They were in the field for two weeks straight and had a huge inspection including their rooms, field gear, and individual weapons two days ago. She passed all that just fine, but today they get the M240Bs, M249s, and M203s inspected. I'm really not too worried about this one because there are a ton of prior service men and women in her class and they probably know what's up when it comes to cleaning weapons so I'm really looking forward to seeing her this weekend. She gets here tomorrow night and then we're going to dinner with my parents. Saturday morning I'm taking her skydiving, but she doesn't know that yet. Hey, we had a deal! Late last school year she was up here and somehow talked me into getting a pedicure with her (hey, you gotta do what you gotta do for the girl, you know?) and the way I finally agreed to it was that she had to go skydiving with me sometime. Time to pay the piper...
Ring weekend. Dude, it's finally here! Wow. I'll post a picture of mine up here when I get it. I got a 14K natural finish ring with a synthetic ruby and diamond dividers. All you fokkers out there that spent multiple thousands of dollars can kiss my arse because my ring is ridiculously good looking compared to any of yours and it only cost me $984. Maybe one day when I'm making way more money than I am right now I'll get a real ruby put in there, but for now I'm happy with what I've got.
Classes are going extremely well so far. I've got the Deputy Department Head of History, COL Betros, for my instructor in Generalship and the Art of Command and I absoutely love that class. MilArt isn't too bad either; I've got LTC Mangham. Our civil class is a joke! It's not even engineering anymore, it's more like "Ok cadets, this is what to look for when hiring an architect." We don't even do any math of any kind in there. Rock.
I get to testify at Baker's court-martial on September 8th. "Your honor, the prosecution calls Cadet Thomas Martin." I'll get asked all kinds of questions about what happened and when they figure out that I didn't know the kid, I didn't provoke him, he was drunk out of his mind, he went after another kid after I left for the hospital, and he genuinely believed he was the Marvel Comics character Wolverine (yes, he seriously thought he was Wolverine that night) they shouldn't have any trouble finding him guilty as hell and sending him off to Leavenworth. I'll always have this scar on my neck from where he came within 1 millimeter of killing me, but he'll always be a convicted felon. Good luck in life bud.
That's it for now. Here are two random pictures for you. The first one is from the hurricane that hit Florida awhile back and the second is Eisenhower Statue at sunset.
Plebe pillow fight last night. Somewhere between 400 and 600 kids beating the hell out of each other to entertain themselves on a Thursday night. Ha, only at West Point. My buddy Joel actually captured some video of the "altercations" and I even managed to get caught on film yelling at a kid for acting like a schoolgirl instead of getting in the middle of the fight and bustin' some heads. On this video I'm the one yelling "Why are you being a pussy?!?! Why are you being a pussy?!?! Get out there you sonofabitch!!! You're the biggest kid out there!!!" Hehehe... This kid was by far the biggest dude out there and he kept backing down from skirmishes here and there so I felt a little encouragement was needed. Anyway, here's the video.
Another semester, another round of academic probation. Great. I just found out today I currently have the privileges of a new cadet and will continue to have said privileges until at least 6-weeks grades are posted. My buddy Clay, my current company commander, and my buddy Randal, his roommate and the current academic officer for the company, came up with a set of limited privileges earlier this week I'd be able to take in lieu of full-blown academic probation. Essentially, I would have had the privileges of a 2nd class cadet except I would still have unlimited passes like the rest of my firstie classmates. Sounded great at the time and I'm glad those two went to bat for me, but word came down from Brigade level today that anyone in my academic situation, which is pretty pathetic, would have ZERO privileges no matter their class year. I can't even get into my beloved Trooper
and turn the engine over without breaking "the rules" now. Tonight I ate dinner with Ed in Grant Hall and technically that was against the rules too. That's right, people on academic restriction can't even eat in Grant Hall. You can buy sandwiches and whatever else, but you can't sit down and eat in there. Stellar. Earlier this week my roomie Colin and I had been planning a camping/skydiving trip for this weekend, but now... no dice.
This isn't a pathetic cry for sympathy. It's more of a warning to all the other people out there, and you know who you are, that think you can BS yourself into thinking you can screw around with your grades and not study and expect to skate through unnoticed. Yeah, cow loan? It came 5 months late and only because I've got a chill Tac officer who likes me and believes in me. Branch choice? I've got my fingers crossed. Post assignment? Ha, we'll see about that. Moral of the story: don't be an idiot and f#*% around with your grades.
Ok, enough on that. Here's an awesome site ran by a STRYKER infantryman in Iraq. He writes all about his experiences and it's usually good stuff. http://cbftw.blogspot.com/
My parents are coming to Ring Weekend now, but I still don't know if Celine will be able to make it. She's doing great in Officer Candidate School and will have just made it to the "Senior Phase" a few days before next weekend. I haven't seen her since early June. Long, long time. It's pretty brutal, but we'll make it. Anyway, my parents decided yesterday they're coming up even though they're in the middle of moving out of the house in Nebraska and into the storage closet known as an apartment in San Antonio. Their new house won't be finished until February, but it'll be worth it.
I think that's just about all I want to type for now. Here's a random picture for you. Goodnight.
My last first day of school came and went today. Sad, sad day... Yeah, except not! For once in my life I've actually got classes I'm genuinely interested in, and with me being the Supreme Allied Commander Trunkroom Officer of the company, I don't have much else to worry about besides academics. My schedule isn't too bad either. I've got class 3 of 4 hours in the morning on 1 days, and MS class every other 1 day afternoon. 2 day mornings I've got 3 DMI classes and then I'm done for the rest of the day. Yeah, if I don't pull at least a 3.0 I'm a bonafide idiot. History of the Military Art (basically a recap of the last 2 years of history classes for me, but not so fun for most of my classmates), Generalship and the Art of Command (a SWEET course covering Caesar, Alexander, Napoleon, Wellington, and a ton of other badasses from history and how they were so badass), Civil Engineering Project Management (an engineering course without math? Most excellent.), Military Communications (yeah, public speaking. Guaranteed A.), Army Operations Past Present and Future (sweet class), and Comparative Military Systems (another easy class). So that's my schedule. My roomie Colin is still trying to kill himself being a Physics major so much love to him and his attempt to get his homework finished before the new midnight lights out policy. So yeah, how sweet is that? Less than a year from now we'll be 2LTs in charge of alot more than most of these kids realize, and NOW they institute a policy which mandates that we're in bed by midnight? No dice. Ok, enough bitching.
I didn't really cover this part in my update of the summer, but I decided I'm branching Armored Cavalry instead of Field Artillery now. Tanks.
Big, giant tanks, with giant friggin guns. That's right. I decided this after spending a week at Ft. Knox, Kentucky this summer after Infantry week. See, after Operation Highland Warrior I was convinced that I needed to branch Infantry because I was really good at that type of thing and I absolutely loved doing it. Ask any of my Dirty Joe's from this summer, they'll back me up on this one. So we got to Ft. Knox and started spending some time with tankers and a little bit of time on actual tanks. We got to shoot live SABOT rounds,
shoot at each other in a computer simulation, watch a demonstration of other types of weapons systems in the Artillery, and then fight each other in a real tank on tank battle. Yeah, blank rounds and lasers were used, but the adrenaline rush was still the same.
I wasn't even on a tank because I was the commander of the offense in an M113 personnel track,
but I still got to experience what it's like to command and control some serious firepower and we kicked the hell out of the defense. Good times.
I got a bunch of pictures developed today so now you can see what I was talking about when I said I took the Trooper off-roading a little bit. We don't have any pictures or video from when we were actually rollin' down the firebreaks, but that's because I was driving and the other guys were hanging on with both hands. Maybe next time we'll figure out a way to take pictures on the go. Anyway, that's Orange on the left and Drew in the middle.
Lucas is on the left and Orange is in the middle of the pic directly above. We stayed safe, but I'm sad to say the antenna didn't quite make it. It was snapped off by a tree branch so I need to get it replaced this weekend somewhere. Other than that, the only damage on the Trooper is from some jerkoff who hit me while we were out at Infantry week. This awesome dude hit my front right bumper while I was parked in the parking lot and then drove off.
I reported it to the MP's, but Murphy's Law was in full effect because the guy they assigned to investigate the case ETS'd (got out of) the Army 2 days later so yeah, nothing came of that. Sweet dude. If anyone sees a cherry red car with bumper damage, let me know. He left some paint on my bumper and I'd like to return the favor.
That's it for now.
Two six, out.
THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS. THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS. THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS. In my new bank account I now have $30,000. Ok, breathe... It may be a few months late, but my cow loan is finally here. No, I'm not about to go out and buy all kinds of "stuff". Well, maybe a little of that, but first I have to pay off a few debts. Credit card, money to dad for the Trooper, money to Patrick I owe him for skydiving earlier this summer (read below), class ring, and minor repairs on the Trooper from off-roading this summer. I'll write about that later. Wow. 30,000 dollars!!!
Ok, back to the rest of what happened this summer. The rest of Operation Highland Warrior was a blast and the yearlings in my platoon really did an excellent job. I told them up front to trust me and the rest of the cadre to take care of them and once they figured out we weren't there to waste their time, like their platoon leader from the first half of the summer, they started performing extremely well. They kicked ass at everything we did and in the words of Major Ruth, the officer in charge of the live fire ambush, "The Chief of Staff of the Army should have been here to see this platoon." Good stuff, good times.
When we weren't out in the field shooting blanks at OPFOR or getting ready to go out to the field while back in garrison, we discovered the joys of off-roading in a 4X4 SUV. One particular evening after a serious thunderstorm had thoroughly soaked the area, I took Lucas, Drew, and Orange for a ride on the fire-breaks of Camp Buckner. Fire-breaks are gravel trails through the woods that allow tactical vehicles access to the training areas and also serve as entertainment for cadets in an Isuzu Trooper and nothing better to do. Yeah, there were a few close calls, but we had a blast and painted my truck brown with mud. We found a place at the highest point of Bull hill where you can see the Catskill Mountains almost 70 miles away. It's an absolutely breathtaking view and getting up there is one hell of a ride. As I get more pictures developed, I'll post them up here. You can see Stewart Airport in the foreground about 15 miles away, but those huge mountains in the distance are a solid 65+ miles away.
Ok, summer recap coming at you.
I finished summer school with a B+ in DIRT (Environmental Geography) and went to San Antonio for 9 days to visit my mother and sister. My parents are in the process of moving to Ft. Sam Houston because my mother got transferred to a new unit so that's where "home" is now. They're building a kickass house just north of San Antonio in the hill country and for the first time since I can remember, my dad won't have to remodel the house they move into. They're building it the way they want on a ridgeline overlooking a ginormous valley.
The picture above is looking down the road from our lot towards the valley, and the one below is looking directly across the road into the valley. Hella sweet.
Hopefully they decide to retire there because the countryside is gorgeous, it's warm weather, only a few hours from the beach, and it's in Texas. So they've got that going for them, which is nice. While I was in San Antonio, I went to Six Flags Fiesta Texas and rode some hellaciously good roller coasters until a huge storm showed up and put an end to that. It was great seeing the family again except for Sarah; she was still at U of A finishing up some summer classes.
After spending some time in TX, I flew back here to West Point to be the leader of a platoon of yearlings (sophomores) for the second part of cadet field training. My squad leaders were Fernando "Orange" Najera, Bill Borath, Drew Holler, and my platoon sergeant was Lucas Hanson. Overall, we had an incredible time, learned a lot, and hopefully affected the futures of 35 yearlings in a positive way. I had awesome kids in my platoon, incredible squad leaders, good chain of command above me, and the autonomy to do what I wanted when we were out in the field. During infantry week train-ups my platoon, known as Dirty Joe, kicked ass and impressed our lane walkers right from the start. The lane walkers were the 2 officers and 1 NCO who observed and critiqued my platoon the entire length of infantry week.
The squad leaders and I taught them all the basic things they would need for the actual infantry week operations and even though it rained on us
nearly every day, we got through it. The next weekend we took our platoon medic, Specialist Danny Smith,
to Fireside for a few drinks. He had just gotten back from Iraq a few months earlier and had some crazy stories for us. The 100% tactical version of infantry week, known as Operation Highland Warrior, started the next Sunday. We were fighting a mock army of PLA (Palisades Liberation Army) and we went right into a company defense of a creek bed and bridge. We dug in for 36 hours and made individual fighting positions along a rock wall. We had to defend against 80+ regular army infantry who had just gotten back from Iraq and after repeated assaults, the lane walkers finally called an end to it. They never breached our lines and even though we lost just under half our platoon, we held our ground. That pretty much set the tone for the rest of infantry week in our different missions. We conducted a raid on a PLA training camp, movement to contact where we had to clear out all PLA in a particular sector, and then an ambush with live ammo.
Our raid was pretty damn cool because we got airlifted out and back on UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters. We got about a 15 minute ride to our LZ and when we got off the bird the mission started.
I had to land nav the platoon up a ridgeline and stop them just short of the crest of the hill to set up a security halt so we could do a leader's recon. Well, before we got to the planned ORP (objective rally point), I realized the lead squad had gone too far and had almost stumbled into the middle of our objective, the PLA training camp. I had radio contact with each of my squad leaders so I had him back his squad off the objective and to come back to the rest of the platoon as quietly as he could. The whole point of a raid is to surprise the enemy and if we were detected, the mission would have been over. As he was backing his squad up to where I and the rest of the platoon was, he made contact with a mock civilian on the battlefield. I had the squad leader bring the guy along with his squad and we found out he was an ally of the PLA and that he actually worked as a scout for the training camp we were about to raid. He claimed to be friendly to everyone, but I had to detain him throughout the duration of the mission so he couldn't compromise us. I told him he would be our "guest" for the next 2 hours and that if he made any attempt to escape or to give away our position by making noise that he would be bound and gagged so he stayed quiet the rest of the time. We finally got our ORP emplaced and took off on the leader's recon of the objective to see exactly what we were getting ourselves into and to figure out which squads would go where. On the leader's recon you have to determine where the support by fire position will go, where the assault position will be, emplace security teams to the left and right about 150 meters in both directions, and leave one buddy team to keep eyes on the objective while the rest of the platoon is moving into position. I took one of the kids in the squad that had almost made contact earlier to show me where the PLA camp was. We found it, figured out all the stuff I mentioned before, and came back to get the rest of the platoon. We got everyone in position, initiated contact with simulated artillery, and cleaned house. Of course, we lost a couple people during the mission, but we carried them back to the ORP, reconsolidated, and then moved back to the LZ to get airlifted out. Hooah and all that stuff.
The rest of the week was just as awesome and we did well in most everything. I'll write about it all next chance I get.
I'll tell you all about the summer as soon as I get a chance, but for now I have to set up my room and all that happy stuff. STAP went well, my 10 days in TX went great, and Buckner was phenomenal. Many many stories and pictures to come later.
Two six, out.
We had a little bit of excitement here last night. Here's the email I sent out to a lot of my cadet friends to help with rumor control:
Saturday night about 11 PM, Drew Holler (my roommate here in STAP) and I had just finished watching a DVD and were about to take off and find something to do. We hadn't been drinking at all. Just after 11, a kid named Baker from the class of '07 comes stumbling into our room drunk off his ass. The COC had offered a mall trip earlier that day for all the underclass kids and apparently this kid had spent the entire time in the TGIFriday's bar.
He came in here stumbling around with a K-bar knife in his left hand and didn't say a single word, just started trying to show off his new knife like a billy badass. He was trying to flip it around and spin it in his fingers and junk like that and I wasn't impressed because the kid didn't have a damn clue what he was doing. He was just an idiot drunk so I started laughing at him. He stopped doing his little act and pointed it at Drew with a blank look on his face which made me laugh a little bit more and then he pointed it at me which made me laugh even harder. It was hilarious to me at the time how this kid was trying to be a tough guy with a knife, but he could barely stand up while doing it.
Well, apparently he had something to prove so he held the blade up against my neck and I kinda stopped laughing for the most part but still gave him a look like "what the hell are you gonna do asshole?" Not smart I know, but at the time I thought he had the dull side of the blade against me just trying to scare me. That's why I didn't move away, I just glared at him. About 2 seconds later he pulled it across my neck/throat and I initially thought he really had used the back side of the blade. I reached up and touched my neck and felt a little bit of blood and at first I thought "Wow, cool trick. Where'd he get a prop knife and fake blood?" Then I saw the look on Drew's face; he wasn't laughing at all and was just staring at me wide-eyed. I got up and looked in the mirror and I had a 4 inch laceration about 1/4" deep just above my left collarbone. I saw that I wasn't bleeding too badly so I told Drew to get my keys and run up to DENTAC to get my truck and that I would meet him at Grant Turnaround. He gave me a towel to hold up to my neck and then we started walking down the stairs. Jack the Ripper was just standing at the top of the stairs leaning on the handrailing still not saying anything but I didn't see the K-bar anywhere so we just eased past him.
As we were walking through Grant Area, I saw Aaron Alexander and Scott Wesley sitting on the clock and when they asked why I had a towel pressed to my neck I told them there was a crazy plebe upstairs with a K-bar who had just cut me. They went up the stairs and according to the MP's, "secured CDT Baker in his room". I found out later that just before they went up there, Baker had already tried to go after another kid and had nicked him just below the sternum but that the kid was fine and just needed a band-aid. He also put inch deep stab marks in the kid's door. When Aaron and Scott got upstairs, Baker was already back in his room but they didn't know if he had the knife with him so they decided to try and get it away from him. They knocked on his door and when he opened it, he lashed out at Scott like he was trying to cut him so Scott kicked the kid in the junk which put him on the ground. Baker didn't even have a knife, it was a damn toothbrush, but Scott didn't know that at the time. They apparently held him down until the MPs got there.
While this was going on, I had gotten to Grant Turnaround and told the rent-a-cop to radio in to the MP station that a drunk cadet was in the barracks with a K-bar and then told him basically what had happened. He called the MPs and an ambulance and about 30 seconds later Drew came flying down the road in my Trooper doing about 60 with the 4-ways on, did a quick U-turn in the circle drive, and pulled up next to the wall I was sitting on by the security guard phone booth. It was pretty funny to me at the time how he was driving like he was in an ambulance and with the 4-way flashers and all... Anyway, made me laugh.
The rent-a-cop said an ambulance was on the way and to wait for it to get there since I wasn't bleeding too badly so we waited about 2 or 3 minutes and then a ton of folks showed up. 3 MP vans, a firetruck, and an ambulance got there about the same time; the MPs started asking questions about what happened and the medics did the same. The MPs went to the barracks and arrested Baker and after the medics decided I was going to be ok, I got a ride to the ER in the back of the ambulance.
When I got there they gave me 8 internal stitches and 13 external. Afterwards, CID showed up and started asking questions and then we all had to go to the MP station to fill out statements and such so they could prosecute this kid Baker. I didn't even know this kid. I had never spoken to him, I barely recognized him, and I didn't even know his name until after this all happened. I didn't provoke him at all besides laughing at him. 3 hours after this all happened, the doctors took a BAC reading of .26 and according to some of his buddies he was one of the biggest asshole drunks they've ever known. 1 millimeter deeper and he would have cut my carotid artery.
He was released from the MP station back to USCC and he's being guarded in CGR. He's got a court-martial coming up soon and he's facing 2 counts of aggravated assault, possibly facing attempted murder, drunken disorderly conduct, and conduct unbecoming an officer. Anyone stationed at Ft. Leavenworth anytime in the next few years should stop in and say hi.
I went skydiving today. Thirteen thousand five hundred feet up in the air I jumped out of an airplane and was in freefall for 45 seconds. At six thousand the instructor I was jumping with pulled the parachute and we floated down the last mile or so for about three minutes. Wow. You can see for about 80 miles on a clear day when you're that high in the air. I mean, wow. Airborne school hasn't got anything on skydiving. Wow. This being my first jump, I had to go tandem with one of the instructors, but you don't even know he's there when you're falling and there's nothing but air between you and the ground. Incredible. The four guys I went with had all jumped before and they're working on their Class A and Class B licenses, but it's all good. I'll be right there with them soon enough and before you know it, I'll be a "sky-whore" as the people at "The Ranch" so eloquently call it. Check out www.skydivetheranch.com. They've got videos and pictures and all kinds of other good stuff on there so you can maybe get a glimpse of what it's like.
STAP is going great so far. We have class in the morning until around 11 A.M. and then we've got 2 hours off until lunch formation at 1:00 and then we're released the rest of the day. Yeah, I get my homework done, but that only takes an hour or so and we've got until 11:00 P.M. to do whatever we want. Usually I'll go out with some friends here and hit some balls at the driving range, go see a movie, or whatever we feel like doing, but we try and stay out of the barracks as much as we can.
I spent this past weekend in Atlanta with Celine and it was a great great time. We went to Six Flags on Saturday and rode just about every roller coaster they have. There were a ton of people there, but we bought this little whiz-bang thing called a Q-Bot. Basically it's kind of like the gadget restaurants give you to let you know when your table is ready when you're waiting in line. You scan it at the entrance to the ride you want to go on and it saves your place in line so that you can go and do other things while it counts down the time until your "place" in line is at the front. It's twenty bucks, but worth every penny because when it beeps at you to let you know your turn is coming up you go straight to the front of the line and cut in front of everyone else no matter how many there are. You can scan multiple rides so that as soon as you get off of one, it automatically starts counting down to the next one. With that little Q-Bot we rode all the rides we wanted to, sometimes two and three times, and had a great time because we weren't standing in line the whole time. After Six Flags, we drove around and found the Olympic Park from the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. It was all lit up and there were fountains and statues and it was just a good time. Sunday we went to the Art Museum there in Atlanta and saw all kinds of old paintings and sculptures including some Egyptian mummy's. Very cool.
The end of the school year is almost here and things are winding down rather quickly for most folks. I volunteered to attend STAP (West Point acronym for summer school) to replace a bad grade I got sophomore year so I'll be here until the 21st of June, but most everyone else is leaving the 29th of May. Just like last summer we're all going our separate ways all over the globe to get experience at different Army schools or in regular Army units. Alot of my friends here are going to Korea to serve with different types of units in the 2ID, protect ya neck fellas... Nah, they'll have the time of their lives over there.
After I finish STAP on the 21st, I'll start another long road trip to see friends and family before I have to be back here on the 30th. I'm driving West to Nebraska, South to Arkansas, South to San Antonio, East to Ft. Benning, Georgia, and then back North to Castle Greyskull. Along the way I'll see the house in Nebraska for the last time before it goes on the market, friends and family all over the place, Sarah and Laura at U of A, Mom in San Antonio, Celine at Ft. Benning, and the ever-welcoming gates of WP.
Celine graduated Basic Combat Training May 6th and she's now at Ft. Benning waiting on her OCS class to start June 12th. She has the evenings and weekends off and access to her cell phone again so you can imagine how much we talk to each other. She was made the Platoon Guide in basic training and received a ton of accolades from her Drill Sergeants and Commander. I'm sure she'll do just as well in OCS. When I finally get back here after 5,000+ miles I'll be the leader of a platoon of cadets going through the 2nd phase of Camp Buckner. It's the same training I went through 2 years ago. Besides seeing all the friends and family, this is going to be the highlight of my summer.
Rugby season is over now. Our intramural team won the Brigade Championship by shutting out every single team except Company B-4, the kids we destroyed in the finals. They got lucky and scored once, but the final score was 22-5. I even put some points on the board, thanks to my teammate Jon Elliot who made a great heads up pass to me 15 meters from the try line. The rest of the guys on our team played extremely well all season and we never would have made it that far if it weren't for everyone pulling their own weight and playing their hearts out. Term end exams are next week so say a prayer for all of us. Alot of folks need it... I think that just about covers everything that's going on right now. I'll add some more info later, someday.
1-15 October 2004
16-31 October 2004
1-15 November 2004
16-30 November 2004
1-15 January 2005