Hey everyone! I’m playing catch-up and writing from memory is hard since a lot of it was a blur but these next posts are highlights [and some low lights] from my experience. Enjoy!)
I’m sitting in the plane, anticipating the wheels of the landing gear to leave the ground and take me to my next destination. Texas. More specifically San Antonio to be piled onto a bus full of trainees anxiously waiting to begin 7.5 weeks of organized chaos. Thank God I had one friendly face on this thing (whaddup Sawina?!), but it only lasted up until we got off the bus. It was good! As we careened down the runway, I told myself that I need to rid myself of doubt relating to this because there was no turning back. As we lifted off, so did my doubts, and I was able to sleep. (…for the most part thanks to a 2 month-old baby crying relentlessly behind me the last 45 mins of the flight, but still got sleep!)
Getting off the bus was fine, but we got there around 2100(?) and got all sorts of good stuff in a stunning mesh bag. Ya know… fleece cap, gloves padlock/keys, our study boulder (BMT Study Guide), among a plethora of other stuff including a very nice APECs jacket to complete our “Zero Weeker” look. It was pretty much a follow-the-leader thing so after we got out of being fashioned with the basic items before first-issue clothing we were corralled into a very large auditorium with a long span of tables. Like an assembly line, people with blue and orange arm-bands seated at these tables were unwrapping the stacks of paper inside like giant candy bars (Lemme tell ya, I could’ve really used one). Among the smell of fear and paperwork everywhere, there were last names being called, MTI’s yelling and frozen sandwich lunches being pulled out of their cute little cardboard boxes. They weren’t actually that bad like I’ve heard, but eating “dinner” at midnight wasn’t entirely the best and neither was going to bed at 0500. In the end of my first night, the pretzels and Oreo’s along with waking up at 1200 were worth it! Before we knew it, our regular schedule of 0545 wake up and 2100 lights out was set… the next day. LOL 🙂
The whole week itself was a blur as it was all pretty routine, sort of. It was almost an instant relief when I came to find that the MTIs yelling, waking up at 0545, the PT (the sessions I actually went to if I wasn’t put as a wing man), and the like didn’t phase me and I could play the game with them. Plus making new friends was great The rest of the week from that Tuesday on was filled with all sorts of appointments full of needles and other processing stuff like first clothing issue. 7 immunizations total, 6 of them with needles, 5 canteens a day, 4 days of civilian clothes (didn’t get our uniforms until early 1st week), 3 cups peed in, 2 Grilled Cheeses with Jesus (Church), and a newly appointed Entry Control Monitor… yep. Me. Week One Starts right after this!