Letter Two Dated July 14, 2012 ~ Summarized
Notes in parentheses are mine.
“One week down! It’s been kinda a roller coaster since we got here. Not that bad physically at all, until recently. The purpose of the beginning phase in Basic is to learn how to work as a unit. Many people DO NOT understand that concept.
Last night before dinner chow, one of the females mouthed off big time. So after a heavy helping of broccoli, cheese, and rice casserole, we went to our bay (barracks) for some quality time with our Drill Sergeant and M-16 rifles for physical training . . . just squatting with it above our head, then holding it in one hand straight out. I’m getting in shape tho!
(That sounds miserable! I’m sure my broccoli casserole is much better than the Army’s. Sorry honey, I couldn’t resist the bad joke.)
Yesterday we went to what to what is called “Victory Tower.” It includes a 50-foot rappel tower and several rope confidence courses. That was when the cadre found out I went to Mountain Warfare School. I got the course done pretty quickly and then just had to wait.
(When Amanda was in ROTC, she was selected to attend Army Mountain Warfare School and Winter Mountain Warfare School in Vermont. She is the only female in the history of UCLA’s ROTC program to be selected to attend both sessions. I’m not bragging here . . . just stating the facts. Well, I guess I am bragging a tad.)
Last night after Victory Tower and before chow, the females in my bay unanimously voted me as “Bay Boss.” I honestly didn’t think many people liked me, but I guess I’ve helped out everyone in some shape or form.
(Amanda is like that.)
Getting started as “Bay Boss” was stressful. I was up most of the night getting everything prepared for the morning.
The weather is insane here. Seriously hot and crazy thunderstorms. The other day it dumped rain on us and we had to sit in the classroom soaked and freezing. We learned to not complain about the heat anymore.
I miss you guys. I also miss my cell phone. It’s been liberating having a break from all technology though. Only nine weeks left!”
(We miss you too Amanda!)
I need to set the record straight. I know what you all are thinking . . . “The Army took Robin’s novel away from Amanda because it contains pornographic material.” Geez people! What kind of novelist do you think I am!?
The cadre takes away ALL reading material. In the first care package I sent her, I threw in People Magazine and the book about the surfer-girl whose arm was bit off my a shark. She wrote to me they took those away too because the soldiers have to EARN the privilege of reading material. Wow. They are tough.