Where family, friends, and strangers can come to follow the life of a soldier as he tours the globe.


Weekend in review

This was a pretty darned good weekend. The weather here was awesome, and I was able to get out among the civilians and do my own thing as well. I think I am coming down with a cold, which sucks, because I can't miss any school or I risk getting recycled (rolled back to a later class). I have been doing quite well in school, except today I bombed a test bad, but it was only a 10 point quiz, so I should recover from it quickly. As far as my PT goes, I am getting better, and have lost almost 10 pounds, and a complete percentage of body fat. That is pretty much in just 2 weeks. I did find out that after I graduate here and leave out, I will have what looks like 3 days of freedom back home before getting called up for the mobilization. As it stands now, we will be back home but working at the unit until around the beginning of June-ish. This is all subject to change, of course. Now, onto my weekend!

The biggest news was my brush with fame. Any of you who know me, know that I am a huge fan and avid viewer of an underground (until recently) street racing series known as Mischief. It is a series that was started by a guy named Dustin Worles out of the D.C. area. This is not a bunch of pimple popping, Fast and Furious watching Honda Civic geeks. The Teckademics crew is serious. In mid-February, Dustin released the newest installment, Mischief Assault, which he did signed under Warner Brothers. Since I am near the D.C. area, I was hoping to get a chance to at the very least meet up with these guys and talk shop about video equipment and camera stuff for my deployment. I was fortunate to actually be invited to the DVD release party in D.C.! It was awesome. The party went until around 4 a.m. but I had to get back onto post before that, so I was unable to stay for the whole thing. All in all, I met a really great group of people who are totally down to earth and fun to be around. I am glad that I came out, and look forward to maybe hitting up another one of their events while I am here.

Inside the best party I have probably ever been to.

Yes, it was that much fun! When drunk people are taking your picture, you can't expect much. Me on the left, with Dustin Worles, creator of the best selling street racing series ever in the U.S., Mischief, and one heck of a nice guy.

Sunday The sergeants three and I decided that we would go to the Smithsonian's Washington Zoo. It really was a pretty darned good zoo. We got to see pandas fight with each other for food. A lot of the exhibits were closed for the winter, but it was good none the less. It is a large zoo, that is really spread out, so we had to do a lot of walking. I ended up taking about 500 pictures, a lot on action photo, so I just decided to put up a couple for highlights.

The one on the downhill side won by biting the "nether-regions" of the other one. A technique that I would not have thought of, but fiercely effective.
These tigers spent a lot of time wrestling around. It was pretty cool, but no blood was drawn.

The gorilla exhibit was pretty cool. The glass was dirty, so pictures aren't that great. No pooflinging or any other less than socially acceptable behavior, but it was still pretty cool.

The king of the jungle again.

Worldwide symbol of freedom.

Sergeant Jerry and I. Gunslinger at the Washington Zoo!

A friendly passerby was kind enough to take our picture and not run off with the camera.

We ended our day at this local Irish pub. It was really amazing. They had the kids doing the river dance stuff inside because of some festival going on in the neighborhood. We had good food and good beer before returning back to the world of dress right dress, and yes sir/no sir stuff. It was a great weekend, and it is nice to get outside and feel human again. Now back to providing freedom for all!



I have been getting some complaints that my comments are not working correctly. They should be fixed now, so please, feel free to post away! A few guidelines for posting: This is an unrestricted audience, so please keep it relatively clean. If you post and are not a blogger, please enter your name instead of anonymous. I will delete comments that are inappropriate, or that I do not like. I hope this is not an inconvenience. Thanks for reading.


Weekend Warriors

One of the greatest things about the military is that you can meet a bunch of perfect strangers on a Monday, and by Friday night you are hanging out with those strangers as though you have known each other for a decade. That bond will always be there. No matter where I go or do after this--I will always have a kinship with any service member that no other sector of our society will ever experience. This rings true even with my father, who is now having reunions with his Army buddies from when he was in. Speaking of which; Mr. O'Connell, thank you so much for the sentiment. I agree with you whole heartedly about the payback we need to get over there. There are some 2600 of our fellow countrymen that vanished at the bottom of a hole in Manhattan that strongly disagree with our pulling out of the middle east until the job is done. So please, Mr. O'Connell, continue to read and attempt to comment. Should work for anonymous comments.

So back to the reason for this post. Four people whom I had never met in my life before Monday last week and I embarked on what is going to be an every weekend event Friday night. Four now friends and I decided that every weekend we are going to get the heck off post and experience the local culture and do the whole tourist thing. We started off small, heading to Baltimore for dinner Friday. We ended up in the Baltimore Harbor downtown area lost and hungry. After conversing with some local boat police, we headed to a restaurant named Phillips for some Chesapeake style crab cakes that were the best crab I have ever eaten. It was to die for. We then walked around for a couple of hours just taking in a new city. All in all, at night, the downtown Baltimore area isn't too bad. Unfortunately, we were kind of rushed leaving, so I forgot my camera. I will get pictures on our next outing there. Sunday we agreed to go to D.C. and check out some of the Smithsonian, and the Capitol building. I did bring my camera, and here are some highlights. We hit the Museum of Natural History, and the Air and Space Museum. We then strolled to the Capitol in some freezing cold wind and endured. It was truly awe inspiring, and it is great, especially as a soldier, to see the center of the democratic universe. Once again, renewing my faith in why we fight (as if it needed renewing). So here are pictures.

T-rex at the Smithsonian. It really wasn't as big as I thought it would be.

King of the jungle.

Sergeants Julia (L) and Katrina in front of the primate exhibit. Two cool people, and professional Non-Commissioned officers.

America is the greatest country on Earth. I don't even need to leave to see one of the Easter Island statues.

The X-1. Chuck Yeager's ship that was the first aircraft to exceed the speed of sound.
Me taking a picture of myself and Sergeant Jerry in front of the infrared camera.

Me in front of the Capitol at the Grant monument.

The United States Capitol

Monument to the "fallen Officers, Seamen, and Marines of the United States Navy who fell in defence of the union and liberty of the country 1861-1865"

The Weekend Warriors: L-R, The Sergeants three, myself, and a tag a long private.

Washington Monument from the back side of the Capitol.

The Grant Monument at the Capitol.



I will make this post brief. Not because I want to, but because I have to. I made it to Fort Meade, Maryland safe and sound, and even managed to smoke the entrance exam for my school. The school (Public Affairs Journalist) is one of the harder enlisted courses to get into for the Army. I am fairly proud of my accomplishment, and thankful for the opportunity to serve on active duty again, even if for just a couple of months.

My days go by fast here. We start our day doing PT at around 0430. Then after some chow, we head out to the schoolhouse until late afternoon. Get some dinner chow, then I head out to the gym for around an hour. After that I do some of the immense amounts of homework that we get each day. Any of you who know me, know how much I procrastinate when it comes to homework. That is if I even do it at all. I try to get to bed by about 10pm, but so far that has proven to be kind of hard. Did I say I was going to be brief? Sorry, we haven't gotten to the section on brevity yet.

So, keep praying for me, wish me luck, leave me comments and I will see you all soon!