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Dana Paynter's Army Basic Training Journal [entries|friends|calendar]
Dana Paynter

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[19 Apr 2005|12:40am]
For new viewers, scroll down all the way to the bottom to see the beginning of this basic training journal and work your way up each entry.
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[13 Nov 2003|03:29pm]
I'm done with basic training! Will update again later!
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October 28, 2003 [09 Nov 2003|08:18pm]
Well, yesterday was quite the disappointment. We went out to the range at 11 am and did a practice run through of what we were going to do at night. When it got dark, we started. We went in groups of 16, 2 teams of 8. Team A and Team B. We “guarded” the woods for about 10 minutes then waited for our turn to go down to the range for another 10 minutes. When they yelled for your team, you ran through the woods to your foxhole and put your M16 on the sandbags. We locked and loaded it – then the gas alarm went off. We dropped in the foxhole, put our gas masks on, then got back up. When they gave the signal, we grabbed our weapons. As soon as the SAW (machine gun) went off, that was our cue to start firing. They had some targets off in a distance with lights on them. First off, it was dark. Second, I had no glasses. Third, the inside of my gas mask was getting foggy. I could not see a damn thing except for lights. Luckily we had two posts that we had to keep out weapons in between so I knew I couldn’t shoot too far off (smile).
October 30, 2003
Okay, I lied. We do have time to write letters but the stuff we’ve been doing so far is so boring. I don’t really care to write about it! Okay, on Tuesday, we had grenade qualifications. This was something I was really looking forward to. I guess what I wanted was to SEE my grenade blow stuff up, but you don’t. When we first got there, we were taught how to duck, how to jump out in case the grenade was dropped in the area, how to hold and throw it, etc. We practiced with 2 dummy ones and then went on to the real deal. It happened so quickly – almost as if it never happened. You ran out yelling what hand you use, hold your hand up as if you’re holding the grenade, the NCO puts one in your hand and you do it. “Proper grip, thumb to clip, twist pull pin, sneak a peek (throw it), frag out!” and duck. After it explodes, you run back to the safe area and someone else runs out to throw a grenade. After we got done with that we learned about 6 different grenades. We were supposedly being tested on it. We needed to know the names, what they look like and what they do. Ugh. Then we went to the grenade qualification course. You went in with a buddy and did the entire “Buddy, cover me while I move,” thing until you got to a grenade throwing station. Then you’d throw some fake grenades. You got a “GO” depending on whether or not you threw it in the area needed. I got a 5/7 so I got 2nd class. I wanted expert. Ah well, it just proves that I throw like a girl (smile). One of the stations was the “grenade identification” station. You had to tell what any 2 of them did. I got my two – thank goodness.
Yesterday, Wednesday, we had our PT and end of cycle testing. I wasn’t worried at all about the PT test. Only thing I was worried about were the graders. They weren’t our drill sergeants that were testing us. For pushups, he didn’t count all of them. He said I wasn’t going down far enough! My chest was on the ground when I went down! So I went down on my pushups – got a 39! Still passed 90 points (smile). Then for sit ups, I did about 82 – that’s past 100 points (smile). I was aiming for the PT patch. With my first two PT tests, I didn’t reach the 90 point mark with sit ups. This time, I told myself that if I didn’t get 90+ in sit ups, I wouldn’t bother even attempting getting the same for the 2 mile run. After I got what I wanted for sit ups, I worried about the run. Not about not passing it, but getting 90 points on it. In my first PT test I did it in about 18:10. In the second, I got 17:15. The track we did it on seemed to be smaller than ¼ mile track and we only ran 8 laps. This time, we were doing the run on a normal ¼ mile track which is why I was worried. If the other track seemed to be smaller, how would I shorten my run time this time? The 90 point mark for the 2 mile run for 21 year old females is 16:24. I wasn’t expecting to get anywhere near that time. I mean, I’d have to knock off about 50 seconds! They called “GO” and I TOOK OFF!! I almost sprinted down that track. I also used longer strides to get distance quicker. I got tired fast! But I kept thinking, “Don’t stop. I’m tired, but I can do this. Keep going.” I had my watch with me so I was timing myself. After the first lap, I checked my time. Under 2 minutes, WOOHOO! To get my time, I needed to make sure I didn’t go over 2 minutes per lap since I only had 24 seconds to spare. After the second lap, I was at 3:40! I wanted to stop soooo badly. After that, I didn’t check my watch again until I was done. 15:59!! I was butt tired and my shins were killing me. I was so excited! I got my patch!!! I just don’t know when we’re going to get them –for those who got it. I don’t even know if anyone else in my platoon got it? Oh well.
Then we had the end of cycle testing. I was so nervous. They moved the 4 platoons around to different stations outside to get tested on certain things:
1) Perform first aid to clear an object stuck in the throat of a conscious casualty.
2) Perform first aid to prevent or control shock.
3) Decontaminate your skin using the M291 skin decontamination kit (SDK).
4) Protest yourself from chemical and biological injury/contamination using your M-40 protective mask with hood (in other words, put the gas mask on in 9 seconds)
5) Determine a magnetic azimuth using a lensatic compass
6) Measure distance on a map.
7) Report information of potential intelligence value.
8) Challenge a person(s) entering your area.
9) Prepare an M136 AT-4 for firing/restore an M136 AT-4 to carrying configuration.
10) Perform misfire procedures on an M136 AT-4.
I got a first time “GO” on everything!
Today, we have hand to hand combat. I’m not looking forward to it. Did I ever mention that something is wrong with my left calf muscle? It’s been hurting for the past 2 weeks or so. It’s not the normal aching from running or PT. It hurts when it wants to. Yesterday, especially after another drill sergeant smoked us, it was killing me. I couldn’t walk properly. I had to walk on the side of my left foot. I don’t know what’s wrong with it. But last week when we had hand to hand combat, my partner landed right on my calf. Aaaaagh! I want to go to sick call so badly to see what’s wrong with it. If I do, it won’t be until Victory Forge is over. If I go now, and something bad is going on in that dumb leg, they’ll put me on profile and I won’t be able to do Victory Force. And that is the last graduation requirement. 5.2 miles there, then 9.5 miles back. Aaaaagh.
Oh, our platoon won the PT banner for having more people pass. (smile). Did I say we got the high BRM banner, too?
Rauch is gone. She left yesterday for PTRP.
I never mentioned the big flirt in our bay, have I? Remember the situation with the 2 girls in our platoon having a relationship? And they moved one of them to 4th Platoon and took a 4th Platoon troublemaker and moved her here? Well, the girl that was moved to my platoon – she’s been getting into a lot of trouble lately. A few weeks ago, she was caught writing letters to a male soldier in another company which isn’t allowed. Nothing happened to her, but he got in a bunch of trouble: he was platoon guide, that was taken away; he was given an Article 15, his rank and money were taken away; and he was sent to GOLF (where all the troublemakers go) – for a couple of months. After he gets out, he has to redo BCT all over again. Last week, were rushed out of the bay for something and some people left their lockers unlocked (which isn’t allowed). One of the girls who left it open was the one I’m talking about. When we got back, their lockers were trashed – punishment for keeping them unsecured. We later found out that our drill sergeant looked through that girls junk, found letters again – now she has an Article 15. Now, it’s known that she kissed some guy in another platoon, so we’ll see what happens with that. I hate her. She’s been bringing a lot of junk to our bay. AAAAAAAGH!!!!
Later:
Okay, we did our hand to hand combat. It wasn’t much of a big deal. I figured we’d be fighting the males, too, but we didn’t. My calf really didn’t hurt during that. It did later on while marching though – shins too. It hurt so badly. It’s just a good thing BT is almost over. Anyway, I won some matches, lost some. No biggy. One girl was sent to the hospital because something got dislodged in her throat while fighting. She’s fine now. One guy’s arm got dislocated and the drill sergeant popped it right back in by kicking it in!
We’ve been practicing for the drill and ceremony competition for tomorrow. We won’t be winning that banner. My platoon sucks at marching. No biggy – we have PT and BRM. If we got D&C, that would be cool but I’m not seeing it happen.
My platoon fights a lot. It’s gotten so bad that the drill sergeant is threatening to take family day away from us. There’s constant arguing in the male and female bays. If we get family day taken away, they’ll hear me! Woooo!
Time for bed. Me tired! Night.
October 31, 2003
Well, we had our drill and ceremony competition. Guess who won! WOLFPACK! Yeay! Drill Sergeant Bentley came over while we were waiting for the news and he said, “Our flag is going to look nice with 3 banners!” Everyone was shocked. Nobody was expecting us to win. Now we’re taking our flag to chow to show off the High BRM, PT & D&C banners. We need to try to get tomorrow’s banner. It’s a Battalion competition. All of the platoons that won from today in 3-518th compete tomorrow morning.
I was also nominated for Soldier of the Cycle (smile). The platoon chose 4 people – 2 males and 2 females. DS Bentley had us go up front and do an about-face, backs facing the platoon. Then they voted. Peterson won, but I came is second!! They said I lost by 3 or so. When we got back inside, there was a discussion about redoing the vote because I deserved it. Anyway, each platoon had their Soldier of the Cycle person that would go to the board with the First Sergeant. There they would be asked questions concerning marching, chain of command, first aid, chemical warfare, etc., and whoever got the most right would be Soldier of the Cycle. Bether from 3rd Platoon got it. But “it felt so good to be nominated. (smile) HaHa. Then, to have some want to change the vote was nice, I guess – besides, I heard being in front of the First Sergeant and Platoon Sergeant was pretty scary. Peterson said his hands were pretty shaky. So I suppose I’m glad I didn’t have to go through that.
New rule – if PG (platoon guide) thinks you’re doing something wrong (talking in formation, etc.) he can put your name on a list – every time your name gets on this list, you lost an hour from family day. It seems like our platoon is getting worse as the weeks go by! It’s supposed to be the opposite.
Time for bed!
D&C competition today! Cross your fingers!
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October 21, 2003 [05 Nov 2003|08:21am]
Fireguard (0030)
Well, yesterday we got our Class A’s! We spent the entire day back at the reception area getting the items, fitting into them, getting them hemmed, having rank sewn on, and being inspected. Regular Army had four inspections:
1) dress shoes, hat, short sleeved shirt, pants, with belt
2) dress shoes, same short sleeved shirt, 2nd pair of pants
3) dress shoes, long sleeved shirt, skirt
4) dress shoes, same long sleeved shirt, 2nd skirt, class A jacket and black jacket.
During these inspections, you’re walking up on a little stage with DSs at the bottom making sure everything fits correctly. Man, all the males were looking pretty sharp in their full uniforms!! I still don’t know how I looked – there were no mirrors. But I was told I looked good so all is well. My rank looks rather nice in gold on my jacket. (smile) The girls didn’t seem to like their skirts much though. I would rather wear the skirt just because it’s a pain to put the belt on with the pants. The loops in the pants are so small – I had to get help. Ha! I heard the clothing is pretty expensive, too. (frown)
When we got back, we did a little PT as a platoon. Next Wednesday is our final PT test and DS Bentley is trying to get everyone to pass so we can get the PT banner to go along with the BRM banner on our flag. We ran 2 miles and the track. I stayed with Rauch to keep her from stopping. She did it, too – just about a minute and a half late. (frown) She still hasn’t qualified BRM yet. She’s been going to the range but keeps getting NO-Gos. She goes back today when we’re all at the confidence course.
Speaking of which, I’m not really looking forward to it. It’s where you get in groups of 5 or 6 and go through some obstacles. No biggy right? Wrong. I don’t want to do that tower. I’m not afraid of heights and I’m not afraid of falling. I guess what I don’t like is that someone will have to pull me up.
October 23
Whoops, I guess I didn’t finish my last entry. I’ll just continue now. So, yeah, on Wednesday we did the confidence course. It wasn’t bad. That tower I was talking about was okay. I was in an all female team, too, and we did fine. There was one obstacle that had 5 walls – each getting higher as they went on. That was kind of fun. Then there were a bunch of mini obstacles that you do on your own. I won’t explain any of them. Mom and dad, you can see them when you come! I came out all bruised up though. All up under my arms – and my knees are pretty much 2 big bruises! I’m even sore on the inner parts of my thighs from straddling a bunch of these wooden poles that you had to weave in and out of.
Yesterday we did CHIP. I still don’t even know what it stands for. But we motored out to a range and did some low crawling, high crawling, under barbed wire with our weapons, threw dummy grenades and then went through a course as a buddy team covering each other when they move, and shooting blanks. Today, we do exactly as we did yesterday except we get live ammo!! And we do a Night Infiltration Course where we do low crawls and shoot, go through obstacles, etc., at night with supposedly live ammo shooting at us overhead – and all of this is done when it’s pitch black outside. We’re camping out again tonight and we were told it WON’T rain. Phew!! So I’ll write about that when I get back. Tomorrow we’re learning about other weapons and get to see how they fire.
Rauch, the girl there with the shin splints and stress fractures, well, she’s in pain again. She is going to sick call today and won’t be going with us. So she might not even graduate because we have a road march on Saturday, PT test on Wednesday and Victory Force in less than 2 weeks with the 9 ½ mile road march. If she’s finding it hard to must walk, she won’t be able to do the rest. That’s for sure. Some girl in the bay connected to us (3rd Plt) fell down yesterday morning during PT. Turns out she dislocated her knee, tore up all of the ligaments, etc. She had surgery yesterday. Now she’s getting chaptered out. You don’t think of the chances of getting hurt at BCT during PT! Yikes.
October 26, Sunday
No time to write. NO TIME TO WRITE! Okay. Let’s see what we’ve done lately. On Thursday, we took the bus out to a different range where we practiced the buddy team thing again. “Buddy, cover me while I move!” “Gotcha covered buddy!” “Rifle on safe, dust cover closed. Shimmy shimmy sneak a peak. I’m up! He see me! I’m down! Buddy set!” And then the next person goes and the same thing is repeated. This time though, we used live rounds and got a fake grenade that did a little more than just sit there. It made a poof noise and smoke cam out. At the end of the buddy team course, we threw them. “Proper grip, thumb to clip, twist pull pin, sneak a peak, (throw it), FRAG OUT!! (duck)” Every time, I’m more concerned with watching where my fake grenade is going to when I yell “FRAG OUT,” I’ve still got my head up, haha! We have grenade qualifications on Tuesday. You don’t have to qualify in order to graduate. It’s just a little extra badge you can try to get. I’m not quite sure what you have to do except get 5/7. Uh, grenades in a certain spot I guess? Going by how I threw the fake ones, I won’t be qualifying. (smile)
After that, we marched to another area where we set up out tents. The ground was soft so it was easy to get the stakes in. Then as a platoon, we went through a course at night with our weapons. Climb walls, low crawl under barbed wire, run through the woods not being able to see a single thing. It was tiring! Next was the night infiltration course. Half the company at a time stood shoulder to shoulder in front of this slanting wall. The top of the wall was the top of the ground so we were under ground. It was quiet and all of a sudden, BOOM BOOM!! Explosions, gunshots, etc. “Go Go Go! Everyone jumped the wall and started low and high crawling with all of these noises going on. There were a few barbed wire obstacles too. It sucked. I was pooped! “Don’t stand up! You’ll get shot!” Bull. Those towers were high that had the weapons firing. I was told it was 100 meters long. Ugh. I had enough sand in my pockets to make a castle. After that was over, we had mail call and went to bed. It was a little chilly – nothing big though – until we (my battle buddy and myself) got up for 1 am-2 am fireguard. Brrrr! I had gloves, a beanie and a field jacket on with my BDUs – then went to bed like that. We talked to the two male fireguards and they went over to some guys tent (Austin and Bowan) and took one of the stakes out causing the entire frong end to cave in. Haha!
On Friday morning after we woke up, we took a bus to US Weapons. We learned about the grenade launcher, a machine gun, some explosion thing and uh, some big missile launcher thing. We got to fire the grenade launcher. That was pretty hard. The way you had to position it killed my arms! The Sgt that ran the area said that everyone should learn the basics of the machine gun. Well, when time cam for my Plt to learn about it, it was time to go. I guess we’ll die at war if we every have to go then. I swear, he made a big deal about knowing how to use it!!
On Saturday, we had a 5.2 mile road march. It wasn’t so bad actually. We had our ruck sacks on with our wet weather top, pants and poncho inside. We had our LCE on with our Kevlar. And in our hands? Our M16. Ugh, I hate carrying that thing. I can handle the ruck sack. I wish we could sling the M16 but oh well. Our next road march is in November. A 5-mile march to Victory Forge. We’ll drive part of the way, then march the rest. Then we’ll march about 9 ½ miles back to the company after Victory Forge is over.
Anyway, after that, we had hand to hand combat. I don’t really like any of that – except for the choke holds. I can’t wait to choke someone out! (smile) We also had an “inspection.” We put on our LCEs and kevlars with our M16s in our hands. When the Company Commander, Captain Clark, came up to us we did inspection arms, he’d check it, give it back and continue on. What a stressful moment. (frown) I wasn’t ready for it! I hate those things.
Turns out Rauch is going to PTRP. She might leave us tomorrow. Ah well. There’s not much time left and I do get along with everyone – they’re just driving me nuts. Those from my platoon that are going to Fort Sam Houston are nice but I don’t talk with them that often.
I took crackers from the dining facility for the first time yesterday. I’m going to be taking more as days go by. (smile)
Upcoming events:
Oct 27 – Squad Defense
Oct 28 – Grenade Qualifications
Oct 29 – PT test and end of cycle test
Oct 30 – Drill and Ceremony Practice
Oct 31 – Drill & Ceremony Competition
Nov 01 – Victory Forge Prep
Nov 3-6 – Victory Forge
The rest of the time is spent doing grad practice I think. Anyway – I’m mailing this tomorrow.
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October 14, 2003 [31 Oct 2003|07:56am]
I’m on fireguard again – first shift. I think I might just sleep in my BDUs tonight. We got our sheets back tonight just before fireguard so I haven’t had a chance to make my bed. All the time I’d spend tomorrow on getting dressed will be spent making my bed – unless I do that tonight. I’ll probably be too tired.
I worked on my boots a lot yesterday and got many compliments from my platoon – saying they’re shinier than the DSs boots and what not (smile).
We went to the range again today for our last practice. I got a 23! Yay! Passing score! Usually everyone gets two chances but today they took all of the NO-Gos and let them shoot again. Gr. I wanted to try it one more time. I mean, I didn’t get a GO on this range until today. (frown) So I think I deserved to go again! Anyway, it was very rainy. We were in our huge wet-weather gear, haha. It was raining when I was firing – rain all over my glasses and what not – and I still managed a 23. People were coming back saying their glasses fogged up, got rained on, there was water dripping in the sighting sections of the M16, etc. Tomorrow is qualifications. I really would like a medal but I guess I should focus on just trying to qualify on my first try. Hmmm.
We’re starting to do PT every night from now on. DS Bentley says the PT we’re doing alone won’t cut it. I love my DSs. They totally look after us. Ellis was on duty at the range, and when she got back, I guess she was upset that DS Turdface (no need to mention her name) only gave her 2 minutes to eat dinner. Our DS got mad at DS Turdface. (smile) Ah, we’re so loved.
October 16, 2003
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MAMA!! 47!!
Well, yesterday was qualification day. I was in the first firing order, lane 7. I tried keeping good thoughts in my head. They give you 20 rounds to shoot at targets at 6 different distances from 50 meters – 300 meters in the foxhole. Then 20 rounds in the prone unsupported position – where you’re on your tummy and elbows. It took me a while to get a comfortable position. And I still think I’m doing it wrong. Anyway, my first try was an 18/40. Remember, you need 23 to qualify. The second time, they didn’t give us our scores but I later found out I got a 21!! Ugh. My third time, after doing the foxhole, my weapon wasn’t “working,” so I thought. When the DS from another platoon came over to check, turns out I just forgot to do something. Ha. It wasn’t broken, so I didn’t fire the rest since I spent all that time having the DS go on about the bolt in the M16 while everyone else was firing. I got a 6! After that, they took the NO Gos so far to the weaponeer to “practice” and get tips. Leeman and Taylor came over to tell me and another girl that we were up to shoot again. Taylor gave me the tip to shoot just above the dirt that the targets are in. I took his advice and scored a 30! I think….I was counting! But when we were done, they have all of the new Gos a “23” because after the first time you go, the best you can get is a 23 – so I got my medal!! Yay!
Later (2234) fireguard:
Nobody got expert. I think the highest was a 34 and 2 people got that. It’s over, thank goodness. 3 people didn’t qualify, but 2 went back today and did.
Today we went back to the Fit to Win Course to go through as squads. The march there wasn’t bad at all. Turns out when we marched there before, they took us on an extra long route!! So we went through twice – Wolfpack won! WooHoo!! Oh, we also had the most people qualify on BRM so we got the BRM banner.
Tomorrow we’re doing some sort of cleaning detail where they put us in groups, ship us somewhere on the base and clean it up. For example, we’re cutting the grass with our e-tools (shovels).
Later: October 17, 2003
I had a really good MRE yesterday. Beef Stew! Mmmm, it was yummy. No M&Ms though. Today, I got spaghetti for lunch when we do our post detail.
Last night, they brought a girl in who has been waiting to go home for 7 weeks. She’s on suicidal watch so the fireguards had to watch her during their shift. Sheesh. She goes to the bathroom, you follow her. So I was sitting in there while she was plucking her eyebrows for about 10 minutes.
We also went for a 2 mile indian run. You get into two lines one on each side of the track. The DS is at the front and every time he blows his whistle, one person in each line at the back sprints up to the front of the line. While this is happening, everyone is jogging around the track. I sprinted a total of 5 times during the 2 mile jog.
On Saturday, we have our 2nd Platoon test. I haven’t been working out on my own. I’m still sore from the course and PT from the other day! We also have Phase Testing to go into Blue Phase on Sunday. *Cross your fingers*
I saw the graduating class yesterday in their full class As. Yay! I wanted to wear the jacket and everything. Jake wore class Bs – I guess because it was too hot for As. But, yeah, I’m not excited about wearing that hat. Ha (smile)
I got my pictures that were taken at reception. Kind of gross if you ask me. But then again, aren’t all pictures of me?
26 MORE DAYS UNTIL FAMILY DAY!
Later:
Well, turns out our “post detail” wasn’t much of anything. Ha. You see, DS put us in groups of where we’d go for detail. About 34 of us went to the Polygraph Center. Okay, we were told we were cutting the grass! We get there and ended up having a polygraph done on us! They did a pretend little crime scene, told us where the weapon used was hidden in the building and they actually made us beat the “person” in the crime scene so we could have taken part in the crime. The whole point in this was for the students at this place to have a chance to get us to tell the truth about the crime. Our job was just to lie about it all. Say “no” to everything. Before we even got started, the guy briefing us even asked, “Is anyone going to confess?” Noooooo! Turns out many of us did! There was one part where he put the map of the building up and divided it into 4 sections, A-D. He was asking me (with the polygraph) where the weapon was. It was in D, but I said no to everything like instructed. The guy took the polygraph paper to someone, came back in and said we’d do it again. Okay?! So as he was asking the same questions, while doing this, you have to sit perfectly still, eyeballs and all. But I started getting so tired while staring and this white piece of paper for the longest time. He finishes the questions and goes out. He comes back and asked what happened in a certain section – he asked if I was sick or something. He was able to tell that something was up! So I told him I was getting tired and he told me to do it again. We went through the same questions again, he left came back and said, “Well, it’s obvious from your poloygraph that the weapon is in section D. Now can you tell me where in section D it’s in?” I thought the “game” was over so I pointed and said, “There, under the stairs.” Then this guy walks in and says with his hands on hips, “Why did you tell him where it was? Game over.” Whoops. Ha. (smile) While we waited for others to finish, we got to watch war movies, write letters, read magazines, sit and relax and talk. The other groups ended up sitting around the bay all day and didn’t do much, so I’m glad that I went where I did.
October 18, 2003
Well, today we had our second PT test. My scores from PT1 to PT2:
Pushups, Situps, 2-mile run
Oct 1, 40, 60, 18:10
Oct 18, 48, 66 or 67, 17:15
So, in other words, I improved a little bit. We ran on a different track today. I seem to like the sandy tracks better than the tar tracks. My shins don’t hurt doing the runs. I’ve been told that I don’t look tired at all after my run. (smile)
We also had our phase test for BLUE PHASE. We had to put our gas masks on in 9 seconds, do the nerve agent injections, phonetic alphabet, map reading (and coordinates), movements with the rifle, etc. It wasn’t a big deal. Then we had our phase change ceremony which just consisted of us standing in formation, the white flag was taken off, blue put on and that’s it. Big whoop. (Our next PT test is on Oct 29, I think.)
DS Harris said that since we’re in blue phase, she’s going to be more strict on things. About how we’ll get dropped for anything. Isn’t that a little backwards? “Make sure your canteen strap is UNDER your collar,” etc. Hm, we were supposed to be doing that since day one. Manner, 31, prior service, says this is jacked up. I guess compared to the Army Training he got about 10 years ago.
Let’s see, things that are coming up: This Monday, Oct 20, we’re getting our class As. We’re going back to the reception area and staying there all day for it. I’m also getting new BDUs – mine are too big – and they were since we got them. A lot of people are changing them. On Tuesday, we’re doing a confidence course. Great. We have another camp out on Thursday. If it rains, guess who is going to kill themselves!
Turns out Rauch (the girl I’ve become pals with) is staying. She went to the hospital for her re-evaluation and was told there was nobody there for that. So she just left. She still needs to pass the last PT test, qualify in BRM and do Victory Force. If she doesn’t, she doesn’t graduate. If she does, we’ll adopt her! On Family Day we have to stay on base. On graduation, we can go off! Okay, time to go! Bye!!
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October 8, 2003 [24 Oct 2003|08:20am]
(2020)
Hey! Lots to write about, no time to write it. We started BRM a while ago. We had to group and zero. Grouping is when you fire 3 rounds at a time and you have to get a certain amount in a 4cm radius circle in a row – with live ammo! Yeah! I grouped on Friday. What else did we have to do on Friday? Slept out in the woods. Ugh. In a tiny rinkidink tent with your Battle Buddy. I knew I wasn’t going to enjoy this just because of that alone. She’s really starting to annoy me. She doesn’t think and has no common sense (haha, dad). I knew it would suck getting the tent up with her. She’s slow! I started digging a trench – a damn good looking trench, too. I was to do half and she was going to do the other. Well first off, I wonder why she was having such a hard time making her trench? She wasn’t digging at the right angle at all. Plus, she wasn’t digging deep enough. I need a NEW Battle Buddy. “Wah. I don’t feel well.” Oh, yeah-right when you actually have to do something, so I took over. I straightened up the inside, put her head by my feet so I wouldn’t have to smell her bad breath. The WORST WORST part of my time? It rained…….
AHHHH!! After listening to my BB’s stupid stories, we went to sleep. The sleeping bags were quite a tight squeeze; plus we had to sleep with our rifle. Drip Drip Drip “BB, check my feet – are they wet?” “Kind of.” I felt water dripping from the top of the tent on to me. I fell asleep and woke up soaking WET! Everything in our tent was WET except for – guess – my BB. Go figure! I woke up many times in the night cold because I was wet. My feet hurt, too.
Time came at 0500 to break stuff down and pack. “I think we should take the tent down this way…” Uh? No, just pull the stakes and the tent will drop. Simple.” When we’re supposed to rush, that’s when she wants to start thinking. So I’m trying to get my crap together and she asked me to put her e-tool (shovel) away. Hell no. I was busy!! About 3 minutes later, she looks over and sees it still lying there. “I asked you nicely to put it away!” “Well, I’m busy! I’m tired of doing things for people while I’m busy! Ugh.
After that, my day wasn’t so bad. I grouped again, then zeroed. Zeroing is when you adjust your rifle to where you shoot straight on. I did that and we went back home in a bus. Yay!! My feet couldn’t handle the march back.
People are annoying me – enough of that.
Today, we took the bus out to the ranges again. This time they had real targets and everything was computerized. If you shot a target, it would pop down, then back up again. We shot 5-75 meters, 10-175 meters and 5-300 meters in the foxhole. Then we did the same amount except on our tummies. I ended up shooting 9-75 meters, 17-175 meters and 4-30 meters. We needed a total of 24 to pass – a certain amount at each distance. I passed – 30/40. We qualify next Wednesday. I’m getting a medal for you dad! You need 23 to pass next week. Only thing is, it’s timed. And the targets are popping up and down. I think we’re doing a range like that tomorrow so we’ll see how I do. We’re also walking there – about 2.5 miles. That’s nothing – but everything in these stupid boots and all of the equipment we have to wear.
My birthday was okay – thank you for the cards (smile). We went to the PX so I guess I could look at that as being my birthday gift.
We’re also getting more personal time. Only thing is that time ends up getting used to shine boots, get our rucks ready for tomorrow, cleaning our rifle – I named her Penelope.
Katherine – TWO people have said that I remind them of Daria. Weird, huh?
Anyway, the weather is really weird here. It was FREEZING in the morning – now it’s not. I doubt it will be to your liking, mom, when you and dad come!
Time for bed. Zzzzzzzz
P.S. I’m still doing weird things in my sleep.
October 9, 2003
Had another day on the range. I figured, “Oh, if I just make the march there, things will be fun the rest of the day because we would take the bus back.” The march ended up being pretty tolerable. I didn’t feel like crying today! I saw the range and was just in awe! They have timed popup targets for us to do today!! We got Hot As for breakfast. Mmm, sure beats an MRE for breakfast. Then it was my turn to do some firing. For the first 36 rounds, the targets would pop up one by one. The next 44 would come up 1 or 2 at a time. My rifle died on me. The bullets kept getting jammed – so I continued having to charge the handle to pop the bullet out. I was getting so frustrated. I ended up getting a 10/44 because I was constantly trying to fix the rifle while I noticed my targets going up and down. I found the rifle fixer guy and he said the bolt was bad, put in a new one, wahlah! Fixed. Then I’d get another chance to get a “GO” on this. We get lined up and then told that we ran out of time. The “NO GO’s” were going to straighten up the range. They told us to put our weapons down and wait for the firers to finish. When we did, I noticed that the weapon I had wasn’t mine! It was 97, not 94. It belonged to my BB. She gave me the wrong rifle after I came out of the latrine. Ugh. So it was HER weapon that got looked at not mine. I swear!! SHOOT SHOOT SHOOT SHOOT TO KILL!!
I found out that the one girl I’ve gotten along with the most isn’t graduating with us. She has bad shin splints. If she doesn’t qualify in BRM (basic rifle marksmanship), she’s going to start basic training over. If she does, she’ll go on to the blue phase. But before she does either, she’s going to PTRT where she’ll strengthen her splints back up. It sucks, things won’t be the same without her. At least she livers in Minneapolis so I bet I’ll see her again.
34 more days until family day!!
October 10, 2003
We went to the range again. 40 rounds, and we needed to get 23 to get a “GO.” The first time, I got 18 and the rifle died on me about 5 times. They let us all go again and I got a 14 – after I got the dumb thing fixed! I was so angry. I really thought I’d be able to get a medal in BRM but it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. We qualify on Wednesday, too – and only one more day to practice. Some practice. It’s not going to happen – then I’ll end up having to try and qualify with another company I bet. Blah.
We have hand to hand combat tomorrow – not looking forward to it.
33 more days until family day!!
Speaking of Family Day, one day isn’t enough (frown)!
But it’s time to go. Gunna send this out. Tata!!
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September 29, 2003 (0030) [17 Oct 2003|04:43pm]
I’m on fireguard shift from 0000 to 0100 tonight. I was so confused when I woke up. First off, our fireguard duties have changed. Before, we had two hour shifts with our platoon only. Now, we do it with 3rd platoon (who is in the bay connected to us). We go in alphabetical order, 2 people for each hour. This way, we get more sleep. I still don’t like having fireguard every other day though. Anyway, 15 minutes prior to the next shift, you wake the next two up. At 2345, someone came to wake me up. I sat straight up in bed totally confused. For some reason, I thought I was told to move to my bunk, thinking I was at somebody else’s…??? So I ran to the other end, realized I was now away from my bunk, which I was just at! Then I couldn’t figure out what I was supposed to be doing! “Oh! Fireguard!” So I grabbed my boots from the top of my locked and started walking quickly to the other bay for fireguard (just down a tiny hall). “Uh, I’m forgetting something.” Still confused, I realized I wasn’t in my BDUs (which is the uniform for fireguard). I grabbed those, threw them on OVER my PTs (shhhh) and went over. Now I’m here. I swear, I get confused a lot in the middle of the night. Mhm, all of the trauma here, mhm (note sarcasm). I hope I don’t get this in AIT, haha.
We get our first breakfast MRE sometime this week. I don’t know whether to look forward to it or not! I don’t know if they have a breakfast selection or if you’re just eating the same meals from before. I had a really good one the other day at Land Nav, but we were being rushed so I couldn’t finish. I’m so glad I don’t have a sweet tooth like most of the girls here. Although, I could take a Dairy Queen ice cream cone right about now!
I’m not really looking forward to the Bayonet course today – and those stupid pugil sticks. I didn’t know we had to use the moves we learned for the bayonet with the pugil sticks? I figured they padded us up, gave us sticks, and let us try and beat someone up! I’m going to get killed if I have to stop and think, “Okay, what move do I do next?” SMASH! I’ll just swing like a mad girl.
The DS had us study as a group for the phase test on Wednesday. We’ll be tested on things like rank structure, 7 Army values, first aid treatment and prevention of shock, inspection arms and something else with the M16 (oh, a performance check? gr, I forgot the name of it), parts of an M16, our chain of command, etc. I’ve got it all except for one of the things dealing with the weapon. DS Gonzales will show that to us again today since we didn’t have much time when we did learn it. We have some lame “phase changing” ceremony after that on Wednesday also. Sheesh. But we’ll be in white phase, yay!! We also get phone privileges next Sunday which is – bum, bum, bum, by birthday! Send me cards & gifts! Send pictures and stuff! Send anything!
There are two cadences we have that are so fun to say! The guy behind me, Palos, gets so into them sometimes. You can’t help but get pumped up, too! I like my platoon. Sometimes I wonder if there’s just as much drama in the male bay as in the female bay. If not, I want to move there, haha. I haven’t gotten on anyone’s case for bugging me yet. I almost did last night when some girls were just being way to loud after lights out. Here we’ve got a long long loooooong day tomorrow and some are staying up. That’s fine with me if they’d rather be tired. But to keep others awake while being loud turds is another. There are a few people who are loud mouths at night, don’t shut up when people ask them to quiet down, then ask people to be quiet when THEY want to go to bed! Ugh. I swear. I guess they didn’t learn our very first army value-Respect! Turds.
(2030)
Well, I had my bayonet practice and course today. I didn’t like it a whole lot. I got so tired. I had a good MRE though! Beef with mushrooms, crackers with strawberry jelly, oatmeal cookies (also a shake and yucky rice that I didn’t eat. Anyway, the bayonet course was up hill! A part of it was crawling on your back under barbed wire. I got tired of yelling and showing my “warrior face!” We also had the pugil fighting. They paired us up with a person of similar weight. I was with Ellis – I think she said she’s about 130 pounds. We got our gear on; a hard jacket, big gloves, a helmet and groin guard. We went out and the whistle blew. I don’t remember what happened – it went so quickly. There were 3 rounds. The first one, I knocked her down quick, haha. I won the other two as well! I now have the nickname “Serial Killer.” I had it before but it was being shouted out again today during our match (smile). The entire company was there. The big area of sand was divided into 4 for the 4 platoons. So they had a match going on in each section.
After all of that, we cam back and studied for our phase test on Wednesday and talked about the gas chamber for tomorrow!! Yay! I’m so excited. Well, not really, because we have to do a road march there. My hip started hurting again during our road march to the bayonet course. I really hope it doesn’t get to be a big problem. Last night, when we went running, my shins started hurting, too. I’m just breaking down here!
I love mail call! I got two letters today. One from my Aunt Lori and one from Katie in Ft. Leonard Wood. Keep sending mail! And for those of you who haven’t yet, do it!
I’m off to bed. G’night!
(September 30, 2003, 2200)
Well, it’s fireguard time again. We have a very busy day planned out for tomorrow. First our PT test, then our phase testing that takes place for about 6 hours, and our phase change ceremony. Busy, Busy, Busy!
We had a “Fit to Win” course to do today. It wasn’t bad. Much more fun than the bayonet stuff. There were tunnels to crawl through, rope lets to climb, things to jump over, sand to crawl in, barbed wire to crawl under. We did it in buddy teams. The next time we do it, it will be by squads, then platoon.
After that, we had MREs for breakfast. I had an enchilada-yuck. I don’t want that one again. Then, we had a class on putting our gas masks on, clearing and sealing it. They put us in a sand pit and had us drop in the direction a nuclear explosion were to happen in. That was kind of fun. We had (hotas? couldn’t read it?) for lunch-next? The Gas Chamber!! Okay, so they had 20 people in the room. We already had our masks on when we entered. It was very cloudy and dark in there. We were lined up against the wall and asked one by one to lift our masks up so our mouth and nose were exposed and call out our name, SSN & rank, followed by “Drill Sergeant.” When I first got in, I felt a little burning on a tiny part of my neck by my mask. I was breathing just fine, too. No big deal yet. DS Bentley got to me to call out my info. I took a deep breath, called it out, he said “okay,” and I put the mask back on. At this time I was out of breath. I took one and experienced some of the gas that got into my mask when I took it off. My first thought was, “Oh god, it won’t seal again!” That’s when I remembered that some gas got in when taking it off. So I kept breathing out to allow the bad air to escape and kept sealing it just to make sure it was okay and continued getting fresh air in. By, oooooh, 20 seconds, everything was okay again. After all 20 of us did it, they took 5 at a time to take their masks off, yell whatever platoon they’re in a bunch of times with their eyes open and then you’ll be let out to flap your arms and walk around to get the gas blown off your body. My group of 5 got up there and we were told to take the masks off. My eyes were open wide and I yelled “WOLFPACK!” after taking a nice deep breath of gassy air, haha. I was too excited to remember to take a deep breath in the mask before taking it off!! DS Bentley told me to open my eyes and shout – I’d closed them right after yelling my platoon because they started to burn! I’d already done what he wanted before but I guess he didn’t see – so I opened my eyes again, took a breath, “WOLF-cough…cough-PACK!! WO…cough..LFPACK!” Then he sent us on our way. I didn’t even wait for the other 4. I was getting the heck out of there!! My eyes were burning and watery but that was it. A couple threw up I believe. One guy just dropped to the ground. One girl in my platoon started freaking out inside. All we heard were screams, haha! All in all, it was fun. I don’t know why people were so scared. Nothing has scared me yet! Yay! I want to try the gas chamber again!
The road march there was pretty tough for me. I almost started crying because my sins were hurting so badly. Back home though, they were fine. DS Harris says our shins could hurt because we’re just not used to marching, walking or running on these surfaces. Hm, okay, I just hope I have no pain during my run tomorrow.
We also have a bay inspection tomorrow. Girls are still trying to get things in order now! IG is almost over – g’night!
One more thing. We got steak for dinner tonight. Not as good as yours, dad! (smile) (written in the complete dark.)
(October 1, 2003
Well, I passed my PT test. 40 pushups, 63 situps and my 2 mile run was 18:09 or something. 241 points/out of 300.
Then we started phase testing and so far it’s going well. Other than that, nothing has been going on. Tomorrow, we start training for BRM – Basic Rifle Marksmanship. Looooovely, that rifle is heavy.
I got a little attitude today for the first time – because some girl, oh look – she happens to be my battle buddy too – thinks myself, along with a couple others don’t pull their weight. Bull. “Wah. You don’t clean!” “Yeah, okay. What am I doing when I’m not cleaning? Helping your skanky butt!”
(October 2, 2003)
Well, we had some BRM practice today in the grass. Getting into firing positions, aiming, etc. We’re going to the range tomorrow. Ugh. It’s going to be a long day.
We are now in while phase! Only 41 more days until family day, I think!!
We have a little camp out Monday-Tuesday night – ugh.
I’m going to send this out tomorrow – Tata!!
(October 4, 2003)
I guess I’ll just keep writing. Yesterday we had a foot march to the range to get used to the foxholes and tried out the weaponeer. It’s a machine that calculates your shots. We had to get 6/9 shots in a 4 cm radius. The target was the same as one about 250 meters away. I got a 7/9 so I passed- yay!! It was a long day yesterday. A two mile march with our ruck sack, LCE and helmet (Kevlar? sp?). I almost started crying!! I’m second in the 4th squad and road guard, so I’m running around in the streets stopping traffic (usually there isn’t any!) then have to run back in full gear to catch up, and have to try and keep in step. Only problem is, the strides are too long for me – so when I try, my shins start to hurt badly. That’s why I was going to cry. But as soon as we get into the woods, they break us up in 2 lines, one on each side of the road. It’s easier because I can do my own strides. It was the longest walk we had. Then we stood ALL DAY & walked back. Again, I almost started crying. It was so hard. My feet were blistering, heals were throbbing, shoulders and back were sore. TERRIBLE! Then came “drag ass hill.” My breathing got bad. I seriously thought I was going to pass out. As soon as I got up top, I wanted to drop. That 2 mile march back was by far the worst thing I’ve done since being here. Some girls did cry, and some fell out. If that was horrible, I don’t want to know how the 9 ½ mile march is going to be. Oh, we were carrying our rifles, too! So my arms were hurting, too. Now I’ve got ruined heels, rubbed raw. It hurts like a mother to walk in my boots today!
DS Gonzales (Air Reserve DS) left today. I almost started crying, haha. And we only had him for 2 weeks! Sheesh.
But I’m off. My birthday is tomorrow.
Big Whoop!!
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September 21, 2003 (1537) [10 Oct 2003|03:10pm]
It's Sunday - a boring day. After cleaning you can shine your boots, write letters, whatever. But after your boots are done, what on earth can you write about? Northing really. I made a countdown calendar. 52 more days until family day - November 12. In the middle of next week, we move into the white phase, I think.
Yesterday, we had a class on something and the Drill Sergeant (from other platoons) started teasing this kid from my platoon, Miller. He has some condition since he was born which causes him to shake. Well, he's being sent home tomorrow. One of the requirements for graduating is qualifying with the M16. They don't believe he will so he's going home. Anyway, they started calling him "shakey" and laughing at him. I think that's going a little too far. It's one thing to have a DS say "I'm going to choke you" or "I'm going to body slam you and pop you in the month!" You know they're not! But for them to tease someone because they have unbalanced chemicals in their head is something else. I was ready to stand up and say something but, eh, didn't know if I would have gotten into trouble for it. I regret not doing it now but what can you do?
My favority DS right now is DS Little. He's really easy going, jookes around and then is serious when he has to be. I don't know if Fort Jackson's title "Relaxin Jackson" is true but basic training doesn't seem to be too bad.
We had a class on some fighting movements. Eh, I don't know about everyone else but if I ever got into a fight, I don't think I'd think, "Hey, there's that move I learned in BCT! I'll look for a time to use it once this person gets into a certain position!" Psh. Guess what we get to do - choke someone out! (smile) Well, DS Kramer seemed to be believable. But who knows. I could believe anything. The sky would be blue, someone would say it's red and I'd believe them.
The DSs have been singing a lot of cadences. Most of the time though, I can't hear them or understand them.
Left your left - HEY - Left right your left - YOU GOT IT - left your left - HEY - left right your left - YOU GOT IT - 1,2,3,4 - YOU CAN't COUNT TO FIVE - 1,2,3,4 - CUZ YOUR BRAIN IS FRIED---FROM CRACK, AND DOPE, AND ALL THAT STUFF YOU SMOKE, CRACK BABY!
Small print = DS, large = us. That one is kind of stupid but I can't remember the others at all. Why? Cuz I can't hear them!
I look forward to chow so much. I wish there were more than 3 meals in a day. OR, at least give us snacks in between meals! I eat a lot of carbs. For lunch yesterday I had mashed potatoes, two rolls, crackers and the bread from a cheese sandwich - along with a small salad. I'm positive I'm not going to get rid of any weight. I'm going to gain weight -not muscle either. All fat! (smile) I'm almost positive I've gained something in the past two and a half weeks.
We're learning little moves with our rifles. I don't remember what they're called. It took me a while to get used to it. There's this one guy here, 32 years old, Leeman, his dad was a drill sergeant and he's already heads up on a lot of things - so he helped a few of us with "inspection arms." I'm still having trouble with pulling back the charging handle (forgot the name -had to check the handbook-ha). I can't do it without using all my arm strength-ha. I mean, it's a simple move, just pull this thing out with your hand without moving any other part of your body. I can't. Most of the girls have trouble with that part. I don't know about the guys though.
I'm getting tired. We're not allowed to lay on our beds so I'm on the floor. I've studied my chain of command, general orders, soldiers code, etc., so I've got nothing to do. I'd jump into the shower but we're not allowed to do that either. Well, right now anyway.
I lucked out last night. I didn't get fire guard. More than likely I'll get it tonight though. I hate it. I'd rather get first shift - 2100-2300.
Oh Oh Oh! Ran into an officer yesterday - and saluted him (smile) Yah! Watch, I won't next time. I try to avoid the people in the little black hats because like I've said, I can't see their ranks until I'm right up to them. But we won't get into that again.
I wonder how Katie is doing at Leonard Wood? I've heard a lot of bad stuff about that place. One kid in my platoon lives about an hour and a half away from it and went there for a DEP function. He said that their equipment sucks and Ft Jackson just looks a lot better. People also say it's harder, but I don't know how they would know that.
I am so sick of carrying around my soldier's handbook and wet weather gear in my cargo pockets. I mean, with me being a road guard now, too, I have that orange vest in my pocket - AND, sometimes a flashlight. These pants need more pockets. Or better yet, let's not carry anything at all.
We're doing some land navigation and first aid this week, along with some more MREs (smile) and bayonet on Saturday.
I hear there really isn't any phase testing before jumping into the next phase. It doesn't seem believable to me. So if anyone knows, do they phase test you?
2145
I'm on fire guard now. I don't mind the first shift because I don't get a break in the middle of my sleep.
You know how there's a bunch of drama in my bay? Well, first off, we had a locker inspection. They took away mouthwash from some people, civilian clothes, the shoes I brought, letters from people in the same company, nail clippers with the little knife in the middle, medications, etc. They were all put in a black bag to have after graduation. Some girl had a bunch of stuff she wasn't supposed to have and the DS ended up ripping her locker apart figuring she had a lot to hide. After all of that fuss, it was announced that two girls from my bay have some sort of a "relationship" going on. I didn't hear about it until today a few hours prior to this. The same two girls were talked to once about sleeping in the same bed together one night. Now, there's talk about how some have seen them kiss, etc. The DS has now made some people fill out some forms of what they know. Now there's a chance these two are getting kicked out. I'm glad I had nothing to do with this. Being quiet has helped me stay out of things. I just have a problem with everyone jumping up and ragging on these girls. I know it's looked down upon in the military. And I guess the girls that knew could have gotten into trouble for not bringing it up. I guess the entire rule is just stupid. The rule about liking the same sex that is. Who should care? In an environment like we're in, training that is, yes, it shouldn't be happening. Eh, I don't know what I'm saying. All I know is I'm glad I know nothing. My only problem is those shoes. Doubt I'll get kicked out for it. (smile) I mean, come on, shoes vs. having medication? I guess we'll find out tomorrow. I also found out that we're not allowed to write to anyone in the military. This one girl's parents are both in the army and she was told she couldn't write to them unless given permission. And it isn't allowed even more to write to a soldier in training. I guess writing to Jake is a no-no now. I asked about writing recruiters. They have postcards from people attending basic training on their walls and what not. Everyone even agreed saying their recruiting stations did the same - but they told us no. Hmm, I don't know what to do with the letter I already wrote for them in Seattle. Man, there's almost never a boring moment here.
September 22, 2003 (2057)
Happy Birthday, Katherine!
We found out today that we're going through the gas chamber next Tuesday, woohoo! We got our masks today to make sure they're okay. We also played with our weapons again. I think I have everything down, all of the movements and what not, so that's good.
I got my second letter in basic so far - from Jake. C'mon, people! Write me! Some people got almost 10 letters today! Some haven't gotten a single letter yet. I bet they feel bad. I know I would - so write me! Iknow you don't want me feeling bad. We had some class today - well, I guess it's not a class - they just gathered us up and asked if we wanted to donate money monthly from the paychecks. Uh, no! If I'm donating money, I'm giving it, not having it taken out.
Concerning the two girls with the "relationship." I don't know what's going on. They might be split up and that's the nicest thing they'll do to them.
I got my cheese sandwiches today for lunch AND dinner!
(smile)
I'm also sick. Yup, a cold, cough, and I'm warm. I don't want to go to sick call tomorrow because we have first aid tomorrow which is pretty important. I'll just stick it through. DS Hains made us do some "workouts" with our riflt and I thought I was going to die - at PT also. I'm sick of PT already. We have running tomorrow - ugh. Eh, time for bed........
September 24, 2003 (1653)
My head hurts. Anyway, let's see. What have I done? Yesterday we walked to some building for some first aid classes. We were there almost all daaaaaaay. We were supposed to have MREs for lunch but they brought cooked food for us instead. Anyway, we learned how to splint a fracture, control bleeding and uh, some 8 or 9 step thing for checking a body. Afterwards, we got a test on everything - hands on. 10 minutes to do it all on the buddy your're working with. I got a "Go" on everything. Turns out, the teste counted for nothing. It just gave you an idea on what you have to work on before the phase and end of cycle tests. I think we got our weapons yesterday - practiced some movements and what not? I also had two grilled cheese sandwiches, too (smile) Mmmmmm!
Today we had our first road march - counts towards graduation, too. I'm not sure how long it was but it was long enough. We had our ruck sacks on, our belt with two canteens and some pouches, another canteen, and our helmet. There's a hill here called "DRAG ASS HILL." DS Bentley told us that it was steep. I don't remember how steep though. So, we did our road march on the road, gravel, and sand. The sand sucked. Our destination was to another classroom for land navigation classes - maps, compasses, etc. I thought it was pretty fun - it dealt with numbers and math! So of course it would be fun. We had our second MRE of BCT. This time Ig ot spaghetti with meat sauce, some wheat bread/cracker thing, cheese spread, peanut butter crackers and a pack of fruity sucking candies. All I ate was the cracker thing along with the spaghetti. I have the other stuff away. We also got our platoon pictures taken. Some of us snuck our glasses off. One girl got caught and was told to put them on. We were all standing at attention without smiling!! "Don't smile! Don't ruin it!"
We have a new DS for two weeks. He's a reserve DS. You can tell already that he won't be playing around.
Tomorrow, we have a mini march and doing some land navigation. Luckily we won't be carrying that stupid ruck sack. My side, by my hip, hurts. It's like my leg wants to pop out of its joint. It's been coming and going since we got back from land navigation. God, I hope it doesn't hurt tomorrow. I landed the wrong way while marching yesterday. I'm sure I would have sprained it if I didn't recover before getting too far down.
September 25, 2003
Guess where I'm at. Sick call. Mmmm? Three girls and two guys from 2nd Platoon are here. I'm here for the hip thing. When I take small strides, it's okay. It doesn't screw up until I extend my leg. I had a couple girls feel my side when I extend my leg. When I do it, you feel a bone pop out. Then when I go back, it pops back in. Two people are here for swollen ankles, one for back pain, and one for head & neck pain. I really hope nothing terrible is wrong. I don't want to be sent home. I really don't want to be recycled either, or put in the recovering place. Then I would have to start AIT at a later date. I hope it's something they can just pop in then continue on my way. But from what I've heard, they really don't do much. Everyone in our platoon is sick with a cough and cold and those that went to sick call for that and got meds say it doesn't do anything. I don't like meds anyway. My battle buddy fell and hurt her should a week ago and it's still screwed up! Well, I guess we'll find out what happens. I'm patiently waiting in line to get in......
I had my quick check at sick call. Some lady, a PFC, asked what was wrong, felt the side that hurts and wrote me up a sheet to have another exam - at a real hospital, I believe. Probably have an xray or something. More updates later.
(2100)
I ended up going to the TMC (clinic). No xrays were needed or annthing. She felt it and said I have sprained, inflamed tendons. She didn't give me a profile listing things I couldn't do. I can do everything. Only thing is, I don't know if I'll be able to do my running PT tomorrow morning. I'll have to attempt it. I've got ice on it right now - and was given pain killers. I'm not in pain - just discomfort.
Oh, and as for the two girls with the "relationshiop?" One girl was sent to another platoon.
For now, I'm out. I'll write later! Miss ya!
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September 17, 2003 (0324) [30 Sep 2003|03:34pm]
It's kind of crazy that the only times I get to do any letters is during fire guard, and I don't even know it that's allowed. Oh well.
Things are going okay over here. DS Kramer put me together with Medley and Lukes as battle buddies. Lukes I can handle but Medley gets dropped all of the time for silly things. If somebody drops out, a female I mean, then I can have a real battle buddy.
Some guy really got it because his BDU pants were sagging yesterday. He didn't get smoked though. DS Kramer pulled him out of formation, had him sit in the frong facing us, had him sit down with his cap on his lap and watch us getting smoked because of him. Poor guy. Then people walk away with an attitude all because they had to get physical for a little while.
I don't know about the guys, but the girls freak out about getting smoked. "Wah! Wah! Don't do this, we'll get smoked!" Okay, right now, I don't think it matters what we do. We'll get smoked for anything and everything. The DSs aren't picking on us. gr....
We had a few hours of classes yesterday - rape prevention, suicide prevention, UCMJ stuff, depression, abuse, etc. It was so bad. I had the best night's sleep since getting here that night, but during the day I was soooo tired. I had a heck of a time trying to stay up, but I managed. Everytime my eyes start rolling into the back of my head, I drink water. We need our canteen with us at all times.
And guess what I didn't have yesterday for PT? Yup, just that, my canteen. I was in a rush helping others out with things that I forgot it. Luckily nobody noticed. If they did, they didn't say anything. Monday, I had my PT shirt backwards. Ha Ha. I know they had to have noticed though. For PT today, we're doing some running. There's 4 groups: A,B,C,D - and depending on what your run time was in reception, you get placed in a certain group. A being the fastest, D being the slowest. I'm in C. Monday, we had to run about a mile in formation. It wasn't so bad.
The Drill Sergeants really aren't so bad. DS Little sat in here and joked by us for a while, then the DS kicks in when we're back outside.
I heard we're doing Victory Tower on Friday - yay!
Some kid went on sick call because he was hearing voices. HaHa. I think he's okay though. I mean, he's still here. You know how I've been having weird things happen at nights? Like thinking there's a DS in the room, or everyone is at formation in the room? Last night, ugh, I must have been dreaming something because I woke up, sat straight up and raised my hand. Um, okay?!? Then I looked around and realized everyone was in their beds. The night before, something similar happened. I quickly grabbed my glasses from in my shoes under the bed and realized everyone was sleeping - then fell asleep for a little bit with my glasses on. I tell ya, I'm going CRAZY!
Sometimes the days seem to drag. I feel like I'm eating too much. I feel like I'm getting fatter, haha. Of course that would happen.
Here I am with an entire hour of fire guard left.
All day long, I think about my bed and how much I want to get into it. I have no trouble getting to sleep with all of the chattering that happens - snoring on the other hand - since I've been here, I don't think I've woken up to it. I just hear it when I'm on fire guard. Man, I'm getting sleepy now. ZzzzzzzZzzzzzzz
September 19, 2003 (0300)
I'm on fire guard now. I seems like the only free time they give us is to shower and that's it! What kind of free time is that? Yesterday wasn't very eventful. We learned how to put up a tent with whatevery materials they gave us. See, you're supposed to be doing this with your partner. Do I have a battle buddy? Well, I have two but what we were doing was for two people so I couldn't join in. So I was told I was by myself. Uh, okay? So they're giving instructions to everyone - and what was I supposed to do for the time being? Then DS Harns told me to do something. She never speaks loudly unless she's mad so I couldn't hear her. So I said, "What did you ask to to do, DS?" Her reply? "I DON'T HAVE TO ASK YOU TO DO ANYTHING!" Uh, okay? I almost started crying because of frustration. But then a couple kids came back from detail and I was paired up with one of them. I forget his name but he's 30 something and was in the Army about 10 years ago - so he know what he was doing. Thank god. After everyone got their tents up, we got yelled at because they weren't lined up. So when he said, "Go!" he's give us 15 seconds to have everything down. After the 15 seconds, he dropped us because we weren't fast enough. All in all, it took about 2 minutes to get it all down - so that's 4 smokings right there.
I've stayed away from the desserts and chips at chow! I want the chips so badly though. Ugh.
Later on yesterday, we got into pairs. I went with the girl who bunks next to me - her battle buddy tripped while running to formation the other morning and screwed up her shoulder. So she's on profile until tomorrow. And if her shoulder still hurts, she can go back in and have it rechecked, which is what I think she'll do. She's going to miss Victory Tower today actually. Anyway, DS Kramer showed us some fighting moves. Well, not fighting, but holds, and then the other person would try and get out. It's been agreed that I am a fighter!! (smile) DS Kramer said I look like I want to kill, ha. Then one girl said I do look scary. I'm guessing my mad look (I was in a fighting position at the time.) My partner couldn't get out of my hold, but I got out of her. (smile)
So yes, today is Victory Tower - more on that another time - when I actually do it that is. I can't wait for my first MRE!! Well, maybe I can?
Oh, and if I mention something twice, oh well, I've never read over what I'd just written.
There's some attitude in my bay every other night. Last night, we were told to "toe the line" at 8:45 (2045). What that is is lining up at this line in our room so we can sound off and the DS knows how many people are there just before bed time. Well, the DS came in at 2030 and dropped us because we didn't "toe the line" then. During this "smoking" the DS walked off for a minute and half the girls started talking while the others were telling them to shush. Ah well, it's going to happen. People ask why I don't talk much. Well, if I don't, I won't be getting into that stuff! I keep my feelings inside when it concerns the TURDS here. I don't mind the talking at night. What I do mind is the talking in formation. It gets soooooooo annoying.
It's hard to avoid officers here. You usually see one or two after chow. but I can never read their rank fast enough for that little salute. Their ranks should be worn on their tummies, big and bold, shiny too. THEN I'd be able to make out what they are.
Guess what the girl I'm doing fire guard with is doing? Sleeping in her PTSs in the latrine. We're supposed to be in our BDUs and, um awake? "I'm not feeeeeling well." Watch, she'll be perfectly fine later on for Victory Tower. The little turd is just sleepy. She needs to learn how to do things for herself. I'm always hearing her asking for help - for everything.
(2130)
Well, Victory Tower was completed today! Mhm, I finished all of it without a mess up! They split us up into two groups (almost 200 soldiers there). Half went to do the wall and the other half did the ropes, then switched. The DS at the top of the wall asked if I was in 2nd Platoon. I send yes. He said, "I figured you weren't in my platoon because you're confident!" Yay! The cameras even got me a few times. I don't know how many bounces it took though. I wasn't looking down then I was going. It was loads of fun though. Then I went to the rope section. The one where you go down on your tummy with your right foot hooked to the rope, phew - a few times I thought I was going to fall. I just wanted to do everyting perfectly, and I did!!
I also had my first MRE - not bad! I got a boneless porkchop with Jamaican-style sauce with noodles, crackers, coffee packs, apple slices with cinnamon, cheese spread, gum and a strawberry shake. I ate all of it except for that coffee gunk and the shake. I tried it but it was just nasty. I only eat shakes from McDonalds!! So, for my first MRE, no complaints. (smile)
I found out that DS Kramer isn't with us anymore. (frown) He's with another company, gr! And he was my favorite. We also got new battle buddies. I go from not having a bb to having a disabled one. Sheesh!
We also have new formation spots. I am now a road guard. Lovely. I get a little flashlight and road vst. Stylish.
But it's time for bed now. I'll write more another day.
Upcoming Events: Sep 24, land navigation; Sep 27, Bayonet; Oct 1, PT test & Phase 1 test
*....gas chamber, pugil training, road marches & obstacle courses.
post comment

September 17, 2003 (0324) [30 Sep 2003|03:32pm]
It's kind of crazy that the only times I get to do any letters is during fire guard, and I don't even know it that's allowed. Oh well.
Things are going okay over here. DS Kramer put me together with Medley and Lukes as battle buddies. Lukes I can handle but Medley gets dropped all of the time for silly things. If somebody drops out, a female I mean, then I can have a real battle buddy.
Some guy really got it because his BDU pants were sagging yesterday. He didn't get smoked though. DS Kramer pulled him out of formation, had him sit in the frong facing us, had him sit down with his cap on his lap and watch us getting smoked because of him. Poor guy. Then people walk away with an attitude all because they had to get physical for a little while.
I don't know about the guys, but the girls freak out about getting smoked. "Wah! Wah! Don't do this, we'll get smoked!" Okay, right now, I don't think it matters what we do. We'll get smoked for anything and everything. The DSs aren't picking on us. gr....
We had a few hours of classes yesterday - rape prevention, suicide prevention, UCMJ stuff, depression, abuse, etc. It was so bad. I had the best night's sleep since getting here that night, but during the day I was soooo tired. I had a heck of a time trying to stay up, but I managed. Everytime my eyes start rolling into the back of my head, I drink water. We need our canteen with us at all times.
And guess what I didn't have yesterday for PT? Yup, just that, my canteen. I was in a rush helping others out with things that I forgot it. Luckily nobody noticed. If they did, they didn't say anything. Monday, I had my PT shirt backwards. Ha Ha. I know they had to have noticed though. For PT today, we're doing some running. There's 4 groups: A,B,C,D - and depending on what your run time was in reception, you get placed in a certain group. A being the fastest, D being the slowest. I'm in C. Monday, we had to run about a mile in formation. It wasn't so bad.
The Drill Sergeants really aren't so bad. DS Little sat in here and joked by us for a while, then the DS kicks in when we're back outside.
I heard we're doing Victory Tower on Friday - yay!
Some kid went on sick call because he was hearing voices. HaHa. I think he's okay though. I mean, he's still here. You know how I've been having weird things happen at nights? Like thinking there's a DS in the room, or everyone is at formation in the room? Last night, ugh, I must have been dreaming something because I woke up, sat straight up and raised my hand. Um, okay?!? Then I looked around and realized everyone was in their beds. The night before, something similar happened. I quickly grabbed my glasses from in my shoes under the bed and realized everyone was sleeping - then fell asleep for a little bit with my glasses on. I tell ya, I'm going CRAZY!
Sometimes the days seem to drag. I feel like I'm eating too much. I feel like I'm getting fatter, haha. Of course that would happen.
Here I am with an entire hour of fire guard left.
All day long, I think about my bed and how much I want to get into it. I have no trouble getting to sleep with all of the chattering that happens - snoring on the other hand - since I've been here, I don't think I've woken up to it. I just hear it when I'm on fire guard. Man, I'm getting sleepy now. ZzzzzzzZzzzzzzz
September 19, 2003 (0300)
I'm on fire guard now. I seems like the only free time they give us is to shower and that's it! What kind of free time is that? Yesterday wasn't very eventful. We learned how to put up a tent with whatevery materials they gave us. See, you're supposed to be doing this with your partner. Do I have a battle buddy? Well, I have two but what we were doing was for two people so I couldn't join in. So I was told I was by myself. Uh, okay? So they're giving instructions to everyone - and what was I supposed to do for the time being? Then DS Harns told me to do something. She never speaks loudly unless she's mad so I couldn't hear her. So I said, "What did you ask to to do, DS?" Her reply? "I DON'T HAVE TO ASK YOU TO DO ANYTHING!" Uh, okay? I almost started crying because of frustration. But then a couple kids came back from detail and I was paired up with one of them. I forget his name but he's 30 something and was in the Army about 10 years ago - so he know what he was doing. Thank god. After everyone got their tents up, we got yelled at because they weren't lined up. So when he said, "Go!" he's give us 15 seconds to have everything down. After the 15 seconds, he dropped us because we weren't fast enough. All in all, it took about 2 minutes to get it all down - so that's 4 smokings right there.
I've stayed away from the desserts and chips at chow! I want the chips so badly though. Ugh.
Later on yesterday, we got into pairs. I went with the girl who bunks next to me - her battle buddy tripped while running to formation the other morning and screwed up her shoulder. So she's on profile until tomorrow. And if her shoulder still hurts, she can go back in and have it rechecked, which is what I think she'll do. She's going to miss Victory Tower today actually. Anyway, DS Kramer showed us some fighting moves. Well, not fighting, but holds, and then the other person would try and get out. It's been agreed that I am a fighter!! (smile) DS Kramer said I look like I want to kill, ha. Then one girl said I do look scary. I'm guessing my mad look (I was in a fighting position at the time.) My partner couldn't get out of my hold, but I got out of her. (smile)
So yes, today is Victory Tower - more on that another time - when I actually do it that is. I can't wait for my first MRE!! Well, maybe I can?
Oh, and if I mention something twice, oh well, I've never read over what I'd just written.
There's some attitude in my bay every other night. Last night, we were told to "toe the line" at 8:45 (2045). What that is is lining up at this line in our room so we can sound off and the DS knows how many people are there just before bed time. Well, the DS came in at 2030 and dropped us because we didn't "toe the line" then. During this "smoking" the DS walked off for a minute and half the girls started talking while the others were telling them to shush. Ah well, it's going to happen. People ask why I don't talk much. Well, if I don't, I won't be getting into that stuff! I keep my feelings inside when it concerns the TURDS here. I don't mind the talking at night. What I do mind is the talking in formation. It gets soooooooo annoying.
It's hard to avoid officers here. You usually see one or two after chow. but I can never read their rank fast enough for that little salute. Their ranks should be worn on their tummies, big and bold, shiny too. THEN I'd be able to make out what they are.
Guess what the girl I'm doing fire guard with is doing? Sleeping in her PTSs in the latrine. We're supposed to be in our BDUs and, um awake? "I'm not feeeeeling well." Watch, she'll be perfectly fine later on for Victory Tower. The little turd is just sleepy. She needs to learn how to do things for herself. I'm always hearing her asking for help - for everything.
(2130)
Well, Victory Tower was completed today! Mhm, I finished all of it without a mess up! They split us up into two groups (almost 200 soldiers there). Half went to do the wall and the other half did the ropes, then switched. The DS at the top of the wall asked if I was in 2nd Platoon. I send yes. He said, "I figured you weren't in my platoon because you're confident!" Yay! The cameras even got me a few times. I don't know how many bounces it took though. I wasn't looking down then I was going. It was loads of fun though. Then I went to the rope section. The one where you go down on your tummy with your right foot hooked to the rope, phew - a few times I thought I was going to fall. I just wanted to do everyting perfectly, and I did!!
I also had my first MRE - not bad! I got a boneless porkchop with Jamaican-style sauce with noodles, crackers, coffee packs, apple slices with cinnamon, cheese spread, gum and a strawberry shake. I ate all of it except for that coffee gunk and the shake. I tried it but it was just nasty. I only eat shakes from McDonalds!! So, for my first MRE, no complaints. (smile)
I found out that DS Kramer isn't with us anymore. (frown) He's with another company, gr! And he was my favorite. We also got new battle buddies. I go from not having a bb to having a disabled one. Sheesh!
We also have new formation spots. I am now a road guard. Lovely. I get a little flashlight and road vst. Stylish.
But it's time for bed now. I'll write more another day.
Upcoming Events: Sep 24, land navigation; Sep 27, Bayonet; Oct 1, PT test & Phase 1 test
*....gas chamber, pugil training, road marches & obstacle courses.
1 comment|post comment

September 17, 2003 (0324) [30 Sep 2003|01:58pm]
It's kind of crazy that the only times I get to do any letters is during fire guard, and I don't even know it that's allowed. Oh well.
Things are going okay over here. DS Kramer put me together with Medley and Lukes as battle buddies. Lukes I can handle but Medley gets dropped all of the time for silly things. If somebody drops out, a female I mean, then I can have a real battle buddy.
Some guy really got it because his BDU pants were sagging yesterday. He didn't get smoked though. DS Kramer pulled him out of formation, had him sit in the frong facing us, had him sit down with his cap on his lap and watch us getting smoked because of him. Poor guy. Then people walk away with an attitude all because they had to get physical for a little while.
I don't know about the guys, but the girls freak out about getting smoked. "Wah! Wah! Don't do this, we'll get smoked!" Okay, right now, I don't think it matters what we do. We'll get smoked for anything and everything. The DSs aren't picking on us. gr....
We had a few hours of classes yesterday - rape prevention, suicide prevention, UCMJ stuff, depression, abuse, etc. It was so bad. I had the best night's sleep since getting here that night, but during the day I was soooo tired. I had a heck of a time trying to stay up, but I managed. Everytime my eyes start rolling into the back of my head, I drink water. We need our canteen with us at all times.
And guess what I didn't have yesterday for PT? Yup, just that, my canteen. I was in a rush helping others out with things that I forgot it. Luckily nobody noticed. If they did, they didn't say anything. Monday, I had my PT shirt backwards. Ha Ha. I know they had to have noticed though. For PT today, we're doing some running. There's 4 groups: A,B,C,D - and depending on what your run time was in reception, you get placed in a certain group. A being the fastest, D being the slowest. I'm in C. Monday, we had to run about a mile in formation. It wasn't so bad.
The Drill Sergeants really aren't so bad. DS Little sat in here and joked by us for a while, then the DS kicks in when we're back outside.
I heard we're doing Victory Tower on Friday - yay!
Some kid went on sick call because he was hearing voices. HaHa. I think he's okay though. I mean, he's still here. You know how I've been having weird things happen at nights? Like thinking there's a DS in the room, or everyone is at formation in the room? Last night, ugh, I must have been dreaming something because I woke up, sat straight up and raised my hand. Um, okay?!? Then I looked around and realized everyone was in their beds. The night before, something similar happened. I quickly grabbed my glasses from in my shoes under the bed and realized everyone was sleeping - then fell asleep for a little bit with my glasses on. I tell ya, I'm going CRAZY!
Sometimes the days seem to drag. I feel like I'm eating too much. I feel like I'm getting fatter, haha. Of course that would happen.
Here I am with an entire hour of fire guard left.
All day long, I think about my bed and how much I want to get into it. I have no trouble getting to sleep with all of the chattering that happens - snoring on the other hand - since I've been here, I don't think I've woken up to it. I just hear it when I'm on fire guard. Man, I'm getting sleepy now. ZzzzzzzZzzzzzzz
September 19, 2003 (0300)
I'm on fire guard now. I seems like the only free time they give us is to shower and that's it! What kind of free time is that? Yesterday wasn't very eventful. We learned how to put up a tent with whatevery materials they gave us. See, you're supposed to be doing this with your partner. Do I have a battle buddy? Well, I have two but what we were doing was for two people so I couldn't join in. So I was told I was by myself. Uh, okay? So they're giving instructions to everyone - and what was I supposed to do for the time being? Then DS Harns told me to do something. She never speaks loudly unless she's mad so I couldn't hear her. So I said, "What did you ask to to do, DS?" Her reply? "I DON'T HAVE TO ASK YOU TO DO ANYTHING!" Uh, okay? I almost started crying because of frustration. But then a couple kids came back from detail and I was paired up with one of them. I forget his name but he's 30 something and was in the Army about 10 years ago - so he know what he was doing. Thank god. After everyone got their tents up, we got yelled at because they weren't lined up. So when he said, "Go!" he's give us 15 seconds to have everything down. After the 15 seconds, he dropped us because we weren't fast enough. All in all, it took about 2 minutes to get it all down - so that's 4 smokings right there.
I've stayed away from the desserts and chips at chow! I want the chips so badly though. Ugh.
Later on yesterday, we got into pairs. I went with the girl who bunks next to me - her battle buddy tripped while running to formation the other morning and screwed up her shoulder. So she's on profile until tomorrow. And if her shoulder still hurts, she can go back in and have it rechecked, which is what I think she'll do. She's going to miss Victory Tower today actually. Anyway, DS Kramer showed us some fighting moves. Well, not fighting, but holds, and then the other person would try and get out. It's been agreed that I am a fighter!! (smile) DS Kramer said I look like I want to kill, ha. Then one girl said I do look scary. I'm guessing my mad look (I was in a fighting position at the time.) My partner couldn't get out of my hold, but I got out of her. (smile)
So yes, today is Victory Tower - more on that another time - when I actually do it that is. I can't wait for my first MRE!! Well, maybe I can?
Oh, and if I mention something twice, oh well, I've never read over what I'd just written.
There's some attitude in my bay every other night. Last night, we were told to "toe the line" at 8:45 (2045). What that is is lining up at this line in our room so we can sound off and the DS knows how many people are there just before bed time. Well, the DS came in at 2030 and dropped us because we didn't "toe the line" then. During this "smoking" the DS walked off for a minute and half the girls started talking while the others were telling them to shush. Ah well, it's going to happen. People ask why I don't talk much. Well, if I don't, I won't be getting into that stuff! I keep my feelings inside when it concerns the TURDS here. I don't mind the talking at night. What I do mind is the talking in formation. It gets soooooooo annoying.
It's hard to avoid officers here. You usually see one or two after chow. but I can never read their rank fast enough for that little salute. Their ranks should be worn on their tummies, big and bold, shiny too. THEN I'd be able to make out what they are.
Guess what the girl I'm doing fire guard with is doing? Sleeping in her PTSs in the latrine. We're supposed to be in our BDUs and, um awake? "I'm not feeeeeling well." Watch, she'll be perfectly fine later on for Victory Tower. The little turd is just sleepy. She needs to learn how to do things for herself. I'm always hearing her asking for help - for everything.
(2130)
Well, Victory Tower was completed today! Mhm, I finished all of it without a mess up! They split us up into two groups (almost 200 soldiers there). Half went to do the wall and the other half did the ropes, then switched. The DS at the top of the wall asked if I was in 2nd Platoon. I send yes. He said, "I figured you weren't in my platoon because you're confident!" Yay! The cameras even got me a few times. I don't know how many bounces it took though. I wasn't looking down then I was going. It was loads of fun though. Then I went to the rope section. The one where you go down on your tummy with your right foot hooked to the rope, phew - a few times I thought I was going to fall. I just wanted to do everyting perfectly, and I did!!
I also had my first MRE - not bad! I got a boneless porkchop with Jamaican-style sauce with noodles, crackers, coffee packs, apple slices with cinnamon, cheese spread, gum and a strawberry shake. I ate all of it except for that coffee gunk and the shake. I tried it but it was just nasty. I only eat shakes from McDonalds!! So, for my first MRE, no complaints. (smile)
I found out that DS Kramer isn't with us anymore. (frown) He's with another company, gr! And he was my favorite. We also got new battle buddies. I go from not having a bb to having a disabled one. Sheesh!
We also have new formation spots. I am now a road guard. Lovely. I get a little flashlight and road vst. Stylish.
But it's time for bed now. I'll write more another day.
Upcoming Events: Sep 24, land navigation; Sep 27, Bayonet; Oct 1, PT test & Phase 1 test
*....gas chamber, pugil training, road marches & obstacle courses.
post comment

September 12, 2003 (2304) [22 Sep 2003|07:41am]
Hey there,
I'm finally getting a chance to write. I got to basic on Thursday. Here's how it went down. After throwing our duffle bags onto a truck, they put us into 3 buses. As soon as the Drill Sergeant came in there was a whole pile of yelling - and she was the tiniest little thing, too! "Put your hands on your laps and put your heads down! Don't bring them up!!" The bus ride had to have been no more than 10 minutes long and during the entire trip, she was yelling. It was so funny. On our laps we had our personal bag(s). This one girl had two HUGE bags and was having so much trouble with them. The bus came to a stop and we made a made dash out of that bus - along with the others in the two other busses. I swear, there were so many Drill Sergeants that it was like running through a herd of cattle. They were spouting off a bunch of things, "Look at me! I dare you to look at me!" So we're all running with our personal bag(s) and had to get into a few lines. They dumped all of our duffle bags from the truck and had us run over there, grab any bag and run back to our spots. After we got back, we needed to find the owner of the bag we got. So everyone was running around yelling out last names and checking everyone's BDUs to see if it belonged to them. It was chaos. Now I figured out a better way we could have done it. You see, before we left reception, they gave us a number - 1,2,3 or 4. These numbers were then written on those duffle bags. At the beginning, if we'd just made piles of bags depending on their #, then having everyone find their own bag, it would have been much faster. But because it kept taking so long, we were smoked. I'd never sweat so much before in my life. The heat in S. Carolina - it being in the middle of the afternoon AND us being in our BDUs AND getting smoked - of course we sweat so much.
After that, we were told the # we got represented the platoon we'd be in. Then we ran over to wherever they wanted the certain groups. The 48 of us were standing in formation with all of our bags. Then one guy just started shaking. Turned out, he's got some sort of seizers and didn't tell any of the military doctors about them. But he's still here, so I guess it's fine. I started shaking then, too! I thought I was dying, but I took a deep breath and was fine after that. They checked our bags, made us separate our military and a few personal things from the stuff we can't have. That bag is locked away right now. So that was Thursday. Nothing much happened. Kept having dreams that there's a Drill Sergeant in the room at night - calling everyone to attention and me still being in bed. So I'd look around to make sure everyone is in their beds. haha
The first few days, well, not a big deal - pretty easy I suppose. Just do what they tell you to do. Thing is, some of those things, your just not used to. For example! I don't wear hats. And now, I have to put it on when I'm outside and take it off when I go inside. I've gotten pooped at a few times about it - never smoked yet though. Me and two other girls were looking for our platoon and ended up having to do pushups because, well, we couldn't find them. People get smoked for looking around or moving their hands in formation at attention. We've gotten smoked really bad only once.
All of my Drill Sergeants are pretty cool - except for one. The female DS. I swear she doesn't like me, ha. The girl DSs are a LOT more worse then the guys. Oh! I did get dropped for pushups by myself once. I just remembered. We were told to gather our things after PT and I realized I left my canteen on the ground. We were standing at attention and I knew that if someone were to see it, I would have gotten it. So I decided to try and get to it without looking. FAILED! No biggy - it's all funny. So, back to my Drill Sergeants. DS Bentley is the head guy-short, nice & sounds like a surfer. DS Kramer-the nicest of the bunch! DS Little-he was pretty mean at first, and he still is, just in public though-and of course he has to give us pushups for stupid things but that's his job. Then DS Bitch. I don't even know her name. I forgot. We went to the PX today and I went over to look at the cards to send home for mom and Katherine's birthdays - well, I got pooped at for looking at them. So sorry, not even a card for your birthdays!
The food here is good. Just don't have much time to finish it. After the last person from the platoon has been seated, they yell out, "last Wolfpack seated" and we have 7 minutes. I've always left and went out to formation at or before that 7th minute. I can usually finish everything.
Today is Sunday and we didn't do much. Those that wanted to go to church did that, had breakfast, got issued a few things, were told where to put them, lunch, shined boots, had dinner, fixed our wall lockers, and that's about it. I'm on fireguard at flashlight right now with my clothes drying - just washed them. Tomorrow we're having our first running PT. I'm not looking forward to it.
My sleep has been getting better, with the exception of those weird dreams. Tonight though - ugh - lights out at 9pm. I had fireguard at 11pm - 1am. There was so much talking and Days of Our Lives type of activity that I couldn't sleep. I could drift off right now if I wanted but I need to be up for another hour, ugh. Two girls almost got into a fight today. They're battle buddies, too. Then, some girl with asthma (who didn't tell the docs) fainted. All this when lights were out, haha.
We've been having a lot of classes lately about the army values, saluting, etc. It is so hard to stay awake though. There are DSs all over, making kids stand or get smoked for almost falling asleep. It hasn't happened to me - yet.
So guess what, I'm the only person in the entire stupid company without a battle buddy. I DID have one, but she was sent to another company because they found out she's married to someone in the company she was in, which I guess isn't allowed. So I'm buddyless.
I think we get to do Victory Tower this week or next week. I can't wait.
I'm so dirty, blah.
But I need to go. Well, I don't, but I have nothing more to say! Write me!
P.S. I'm sore everyday!
P.S. We filled out one of those hometown news release things here so be on the lookout
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September 11, 2003 (0150) [19 Sep 2003|07:40pm]
Well, guess what I get to do today! Ship out - Wohoo! Finally. I'm on fire guard right now - a bit tired too. Did I mention that we got our BDUs the other day? We got to wear them for the first time yesterday. I swear my pants are too big-but that's what they gave me. We also bought new tennis shoes - had to. They told us what size and what brand after figuring out what kind of feet we have. The shoes I brought with me are 7 1/2. The ones they made me buy are 8 1/2 and there is a difference I suppose. The ones I brought don't feel as comfy as they did before. And the boots, don't even get me started on those. I really don't see how we're supposed to run around in those - while doing obstacles and what not. My heels are getting a bit red from them but I think that's because I wore the wrong socks.
We got our shots yesterday. It wasn't bad at all - 3 in one arm, 2 in another. NO BUTT SHOTS!! Oh, then there was the TB shot from a few days ago. So, six total.
I can never remember what we did the day before. I don't know if it's because the days are now going by quickly or because I'm so bored. I am tired of the constant waiting around though - and standing "at ease" whenever we happen to be standing. Everyone has been kind of doing a "lazy at ease" since we've been here. I know that won't be the case in basic training. I'm going to get sore just from standing so perfectly straight all of the time. Another thing that gets a biy old - every single time a Sgt or Drill Sgt comes up to you, you yell "at ease" and get into the position. Do you know how many Sgts there are here?! Then, people start goofing off and pretending a Sgt is coming and yell "at ease." This one time after calling "at ease" for somebody and he said "carry on," we started to sit down. Well, another Sgt got mad at us and said we needed to keep standing. So she made us sit down, stand up, sit down, stand up - constantly. I wouldn't call that smoking - more silly than anything. We got "smoked" for the first time yesterday. I didn't even know why it happened but we ended up having to do pushups - all 60 of us in 5th platoon. Hard thing was, there was no room to do them properly - and we only did about 5.
Remember how I said the boys are getting more training than us? They're also getting more discipline. If our Sgts would make our platoon do more standing or pushups, maybe the stupid group would keep quiet. Eh, I'm guessing not.
Oh! We did the PT test two days ago. I passed. My run time was 8:41. 11 seconds after the boys had to be in. Some people didn't make it so they're going to that "fat camp" until they can pass their PT test. I really hope my run time improves because I want that PT badge. I'm going to have to work on the pushup's more I think because of the "keeping your head up" rule. I don't know if I'll ever get used to it. To me, it is more difficult than having your head down.
We were told that when in basic, they try and put you together depending on what your MOS is. So far, I know of 4 other girls with the 91WM6 MOS. I'm just hoping that those annoying girls I've run into won't be grouped with me.
The showering isn't a big deal either. In reception, there is no rush to shower. People actually have convos in there while showering, haha. Me, I just get in there and get out. In basic, everything will be much faster.
In case anyone is wondering why I haven't written them, it's because I've been waiting for my address. The letters have started, just not finished and sent.
But I'd better go. Fire guard is almost done and I need to wake the next two.
I'm off to basic!!
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Second Letter Home [13 Sep 2003|06:42pm]
September 7, 2003
There is nothing going on at all. We eat, clean, and sleep. Well, I haven't gotten much sleep here at all. The girls in my room just don't know how to listen. 9pm -2100- lights OUT, go to SLEEP. I'm sure our lights are last to go out & we're last to shut the hell up and go to sleep. The Platoon Guide bitches at people when we're in formation, yet can't shut up inside when she has to. 69th's Platoon Guide got fired yesterday. I'm not sure what happened - I think it delt w/ fighting. I can't wait for basic training so these people HAVE to follow the rules. And if I get into trouble because one of these people, gr.
I've noticed they're training the males a lot more than us. I don't know why though. A part of me wishes they would make us do more just to keep us busy. I guess I'm just this way because it's the weekend. I don't have to spend another weekend here at reception, so that's good. Monday-Thursday, we should have something to do.
It's hard having to know last names. I haven't been asking anybody for last names. Military time, too. I need to get going on that.
I've been spending a lot of time "TRYING" to study. My room has been so noisy. Me and this other girl had to sit in the laundry room to study.

September 9, 2003
We got out BDU's yesterday along w/ our boots-finally. People in the platoon before us were shining their boots last night so the entire room was smelling like kiwi. We got out TB shot yesterday and I'm TB free - as far as I know but I'm no doctor. Most of the day was spent standing around. My feet were starting to hurt so badly - my heels pretty much. Then when we get chances to sit (on the hard cement, mind you), the butt starts getting sore. At this point, you're in a great need to stand. We had to stand around for a long time w/ our duffel bags, too - w/ boots. I think they were just having us get use to both before basic training.
Guess where I get to go in a couple days! Basic Training! Yay! Oh, I got into a little trouble yesterday. This girl and I had fire guard from 3am-5am. Well, at 4, we got a call saying to wake everyone up. After that was done, we got squared away and into formation. After a couple minutes, the Sgt says, "Who were the fire guards for the night front and back doors?" So us four went up there. Problem was - we weren't supposed to leave our "post" until told so - General Order #1. I realized I screwed that up later in the day - whoops! No real trouble or anything. She was loud enough for all 500 some girls could hear though. I thought it was kinda of funny. But I've learned my lesson. Remember that! If you're fire guard for the last hours, don't leave when everyone else needs to be up.
We have our PT test today to get out of Reception. 3 push ups, 17 situps and the two mile run in 10:30. I thought you had to do atleast that but conintue on until the 2 minutes was up, but you don't. You do the 3 - done. The 17 - done. Oh, on armybasic.org, it was said that it wasn't a rule to keep your head up and looking straight while doing push ups. The other platoons that have taken it say otherwise. So practice keeping your head up if you're coming here!
I haven't said anything about the food here. It's pretty good I think. Of course the majority think otherwise. They compare it to high school lunches but I never had a problem w/ those either. They have quite the variety. Egg (scrambled), eggrolls, bacon, sausages, hashbrowns, fruits (more stuff in the salad bar area), breads, muffins, bars, juices (I just drink water though), french toast (without an entire egg on them , dad!) waffles, etc. For lunch and dinner, they would have things like shrimp, prime rib, ribs, roast beef, fried and baked chicken, corn dogs, cheeseburgers, mashed potatoes, rice, a bunch of veggies, the salad bar, breads and the dessert section. I've been trying to have decent meals because I know we won't be having sweets. But then we were told that they'd look down on you even if you added gravy, syrup, salad dressing - that sort of thing.
There are a lot of southern people here. I don't think I've ever been around so many before. It's kind of scary! I guess it would make sense - would be cheaper to send them here.
As for making the bed, I've only made it fully once. I make sure not to move around in it a whole lot so I won't have to do much. In basic, we get an extra blanket that gets put on top of the pillow & folded w/ hospital corners, so there isn't a need to even mess up the sheets. Lay on top of the bed & use the extra blanket.
5th Platoon, my platoon, has been labeled "the chatterboxes." Ugh. It is so hard for the people to just shut up! Once the Sgt walks away, the yacking starts. So you better believe it that we'll be getting smoked today since the PT test will be done today, too. Not looking forward to the run.
I also think I'm going crazy. One night I thought I saw a drill Sgt (hat and all) walking down the hall of our bay. Last night - I had a reason to be scared. My bunkmate & I washed our clothes at a time that wasn't allowed for us. As soon as we got back to our bay, the Sgt walks through for a bed check! The thing is, at the last minute, I decided againt drying the clothes & just hanging them up in the lockers. If we had been drying them in the wash room, we would have been caught! Then, I started thinking there was a call for 5th platoon formation around midnight. I looked up to see if any of the other 3 5th platoon girls were going and they weren't, so I stayed. Then the rest of the night was spent worrying if this supposid formation was to figure out who was in the wash room at the wrong time. So I woke up and asked the girls in the morning, and was told I was going crazy already.
We get our shots today. The one that goes in the butt doesn't happen anymore.
I've seen some people get smoked. Not badly though. Not like it will happen badly until basic officially starts.
But I'm going to get this one in the mailbox at breakfast. TaTa! ---Dana

Dana's mailing address:

PFC Paynter
Delta Co. 3-518 Inf. Regt.
2nd Plt. Wolfpack
Ft. Jackson, SC
29207
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First Letter Home [12 Sep 2003|06:58pm]
September 4, 2003
I am finally on the plane heading to Chicago. Afterwards, I'm off to Fort Jackson. "Fort Jackson?" you ask? Yup, minutes before leaving the Fargo MEPS, I looked at my plane ticket and noticed I had to stop in South Carolina. "I need to go all the way to SC to get to Missouri? Why?" After printing out my final copy of my contract, it said I was heading to Jackson. Okay? I wasn't even prepared for the SC heat.
Everything dealing with my time at MEPS this morning was a complete mess. First I was told I couldn't get E-3 because one of the schools I attended for my credits is not accredited. Then I was told half of my paperwork was back in Seattle (where I signed up) and they had to "accept" something - those at MEPS couldn't because I wasn't in their computer system. It was a stressful day to say the least. In the end, I found out everything with my paperwork was in order only to find out I COULD go in as an E3 - it ended up being an accredited school.
There is a total of 7 of us leaving from Fargo. Three to Jackson, 3 to Leonard Wood, 1 to the Great Lakes. The kid going to the Great Lakes (Navy) - boy is he a talker.

September 5, 2003
What a first night. We arrived at the airport around 7 pm and waited around with another bunch for more kids to arrive. The three of us from Fargo didn't get some briefing because when we got there, we just signed in and walked over to the group. The Army guy that "checked us in" came over and said, "I guess I didn't make myself clear! I said stand".....blah blah.
After separating the males from the females, we boarded the bus. It took about 15-20 minutes to get to Fort Jackson. And as soon as we got out, there were two drill sergeants. "Get over there! Line up!" I even got a little attitude from one because I had my hands on my butt for "at ease" instead of on my back. One kid was being a bit snippy. Boy, did he get it.
After that, we watched a 10-minute video welcoming us to Fort Jackson, got our smart books (which need to be with us at all times), had our dinner, etc.
Everything we did had to be exactly the way they wanted it. And if we did something wrong, they weren't nice - but it's nothing compared to what we will get once we get in basic training.
I got no sleep because, well, zzzZZZzzzz. Yup, right below me. Nobody else in this 40 person bay snores. And I was stuck with the one that exists! Aghh!!!!!

September 5, 2003 (cont'd)
Boy, was today long. Jake was right. Most of his time was spent standing in line for various things - teeth x-rays, blood draws, etc. This one girl passed out. I don't know what happened though. Before, when she was getting her blood drawn, I guess she jerked and the lady drawing her told her off. A little while later she passed out. When she jumped, the needle jerked out of her arm and almost into whoever was drawing her.
The experiences we've had with drill sergeants so far haven't been bad yet. I know, it's only reception right now. But from what I've seen, I think the female DSs are going to be much worse and much more intimidating.
But what's probably even more worse than the DSs? The girls around me. Some have gotten the worst attitudes in the world. I understand that when the DS walks away and people start talking to have them shush up - but with such attitude? Ugh! I hope they're not like this in basic training. I'm guessing it's just the boredom of doing nothing right now. God, I hope so.
We got a chance to call home today. Of course when I do, nobody's home - go figure. I guess it's better that way. They said that when they have kids call home, a lot get homesick. One girl just started crying - and then other girls made fun of her. Ugh! Oh, well.
I hear they can't "smoke" you until you've taken your PT test so I guess our day will come Sunday or Monday. I hear there's no processing on weekends so I don't know what we're doing.
It's been hard keeping this writing up. I don't even think I'm supposed to be doing it now.
:) shh! More later.........Dana
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Athena0371 mailing address? [07 Sep 2003|12:18pm]
Dana kept in contact with athena0371 before she left for ABT. Because she was sent to Ft. Jackson instead of Ft. Leonard Wood, we're trying to get her address to give to Dana. If anyone receives a letter from Athena0371, please give us her ABT address. Thanks!

FYI, we should be posting a letter from Dana around Tuesday.
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Ship Day! [04 Sep 2003|04:37pm]
It was a rough ship day for Dana. At first they were only going to let her ship as an E-2, but after a very long morning, she left as an E-3! However, and also at the last moment, she was told she wasn't going to Ft. Leonard Wood but to Ft. Jackson in South Carolina!! So, stay tuned for more info when we get that first letter from her. "Her Mom"
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I'm off to Fort Leonard Wood - byebye [03 Sep 2003|08:43pm]
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I'm doing this tonight so I wont have to rush to do it tomorrow morning. I found out theres only two army people going to MEPS tomorrow. Myself and some guy. And he might only be there for the physical so I might be the only Army gal shipping from Fargo tomorrow :Z So, goodbye, and, stay tuned for some letters :) See you in acouple months. Bye!
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1 more day until Basic Training! [03 Sep 2003|06:23am]
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Tomorrow is the day!!
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2 more days until Basic Training! [02 Sep 2003|05:14am]
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Everyone wish athena0371 all the luck in the world starting tomorrow. She is leaving for basic training manana!
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