Oops – Note from Pam/Mom: my first Blog Blooper – I just found this post still in my “draft” folder – guess I never clicked “Publish”….it’s a good one – especially at the end where she talks about “Mabel” (a nickname I use for my mother) – it was a Kleenex moment for me – sniff…..
Mailed blog – written by Julian
10 Jan 11
Today Fort Jackson got like 4 inches of snow! It was kinda crazy, I felt like I was right back in Minnesota. South Carolina was not quite sure what to do with themselves. We were supposed to go to Victory Tower, which is where we rappel down 40 feet. That got cancelled because the conditions were near white out. We got rescheduled, but won’t be able to go until Feb. 12th, so that’s kind of a bummer. For all of you who thought it would be nicer here than in Minnesota, it really hasn’t. Maybe warmer by 10-15 degrees, and we spend a LOT of time outside.
One of our drill sergeants said to us that a soldier’s life is “always cold, always tired, and always hungry.” I’m really starting to find out what that’s all about. Five hours of sleep is considered amazing to me now. Each night, every hour – two people have to be awake for fire guard. This consists of patrolling the bay, guarding the doors, counting weapons and making sure the safety is on, doing laundry for the platoon, and cleaning the bay. We have 28 females in our bay, so each bunk has to do fire guard for one hour a night. Two nights on, one night off. So that means most nights you are not getting a very good night rest. a couple hours here, a couple of hours there.
I’m starting to learn how to eat really fast, but unless you’re that crazy hot dog eating guy you can’t eat much in 90 seconds. Yep, that’s how much time they give us. By the time the next chow rolls along you’re REALLY hungry. In fact, I’m super hungry right now. last night I dreamed my battle buddy had a turkey sandwich in her wall locker and I ate it in Army style, like 5 seconds flat. I told her about it this morning and we had a good laugh. Despite all the little minor hardships, we are constantly being reminded that we will experience discomforts at a much higher level when we get deployed. In every task we do , we are reminded that we are soldiers preparing for a very real and dangerous war. All of our drill sergeants wear patches on their right arms. A soldier wears the patch of the unit they fought with when deployed in a war. They’ve all served 3-4 duties. The stories and passion they have for training us are really quite amazing. They say “You fall asleep in class, but are you going to fall asleep when you’re on patrol in Iraq?” Our drills sergeants say it’s about discipline, leave your civilian habits behind, they make you weak.
Today events: We got issued our M-16’s. So now wherever we go, the rifle goes. They say you should name your rifle after someone you love so that you develop a bond with it. I’ve decided my rifle, #548, is going to be called “Mable” after my Grandma Wiegman. That way she’s with me wherever I go, I already know she is.
Because of the snow we really didn’t do much except for classes, which are really hard to stay awake in. No hardcore PT yet….YET!