15 April 2010

A Union Would Be Nice Right About Now

So I am into day like 25 or 26 of mobilization. I have really not
been keeping tight track of it, as it gets a little depressing after a
while. Everyone says that the MOB station is the worst part of the
whole process (it’s where you get all your shots, straighten out your
records, train, train, train, and get all kinds of new stuff issued to
you). It’s a very slow process and it’s a stressful one. Small Pox
shots have been interesting (I already had mine 5 years ago), everyone
expresses concerns of some type of Small Pox zombie outbreak and the
vaccinations are pretty nasty looking. The timeline is extremely
compressed and there are actually two concurrent missions going on.
One mission is to train and prepare and the other mission is to
operate as if we were already in country engaged in our daily
operations.

Right now I sleep 5 hours each night (max). I have pulled quite a few
23 hour days. I keep hoping they’ll switch us over to hourly pay
because the overtime would be wonderful. It is a very surreal
experience because nothing ever stops moving, it’s a continual process
with no real breaks and no way to really tell the days apart. There
is always something to meet about and something to plan. Meals are
usually a chance to talk shop or talk on the cell phone in between
mouthfuls trying to coordinate details. The big talk right now is
getting through the upcoming cumulative field exercise and of course
the “pass” we have coming up where we get a chance to see our families
for 4 days.

Thus far we have done a lot of training on driving equipment,
operating weapons, and moving tactically. Unfortunately, I am in an
office job so most of my days are spent behind a desk typing away on
the plethora of paperwork that the Army requires for everything. I
write orders, plans, assess the safety of each action and make sure I
have everyone’s name on various sign-in rosters so they get credit for
the training. I do get a lot of time to play with the Army’s high
tech war tracking systems and radio equipment (ok radio equipment is
not really high tech at all). As expected it’s an interesting
experience and it keeps my mind occupied, but simply bearing through
the whole scene and getting back to my family is my overall mindset.

"The reason the American Army does so well in wartime, is that war is
chaos, and the American Army practices it on a daily basis."
- from a post-war debriefing of a German General

Posted for Josh by Stephanie

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