Thursday, April 20, 2000
@ home 2031 hrs
From an email sent around earlier today on my Usual Suspects email list (the list I use to send around articles and conversations and things to my friends):
Subj: Wednesday, April 20, 1999
Date: 04/20/2000 12:26:33 PM Central Daylight Time
To: The Usual Suspects
One year ago today, having finished my final entrance physical, I was sitting at the Military Entrance Processing Station in San Antonio, waiting for my name to be called to sign my final documents enlisting myself in the United States Air Force. Hours from now, a year ago, I would be bussed with others to the south side of town to Lackland Air Force Base to begin Basic Military Training.
Upon entrance of the Lackland training-side gates and for the next six and a half weeks, I would cry and laugh, find new friends and remember old ones, write many letters filled with still-unfulfilled promises, learn to trust and defer decisions to a higher authority than myself or any other man, rage against the machine, come to know futility through firsthand experience, break past physical limits and push the mental ones, and learn to make a bed with hospital corners.
On this day, one year ago, kids died in a high school shooting, people laughed and people cried, someone got married and another divorced. A year ago today and every day since, the world has changed. But by far the most important event to remember on this day, for me, is the beginning of basic training.
Where were you one year ago today? What do you remember?
So, does this being the first anniversary of my enlistment mean my friends will get to stop hearing me talk about my time in the military? Most likely not. Give me another six months. On the anniversary of the day I got out, maybe.
Today seems as good a day as any other to reflect on the year (or more) past. Most people do it around New Year’s, but that’s a bit overrated, isn’t it?
Just got off the phone with my old roommate from Keesler AFB, Bares. Glad to hear the squadron he’s now a member of, the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron, at Hurlburt Field, Florida, isn’t too stressing. From what he said, after eight months of intensive electronics training in tech. school, the Air Force has now relegated him to a supply person handing out ground radio equipment to the pararescuemen and combat controllers. Good to know.
Bares also told me that at Hurlburt Field they have PC every morning but it’s on your own. So the duty-day starts at seven am, but they don’t have to go in till nine am. During those two hours you’re supposed to be at a gym working out. Every Thursday they have an LJ (Logistics) meeting. Which is when they go in the parachute room and pop open beers and bullshit. And twice a month they have keg parties on the weekend. Sounds like fucking college to me.
Glad to know our country is in safe hands. Seriously.