Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Somtime between Feb 23 & Feb 25 (not dated)

Hey there, everyone. How are things going? All is about the same here. We're 1/2 way into week 5 here. It seems like forever. We've been doing land navigation the past few days and will have some more later.

Tomorrow is .50 cal training. I'm sort of excited, but sort of not. I've already shot those, but it will be cool anyhow.

I had to qualify the other day for marksmanship. You get 40 rounds and have 40 targets. If you get less than 23, you fail and shoot again until you pass, but it's sort of like winning by forfeit. If you shoot 23-29, you are classified as a marksman. If you shoot 30-35 you are a sharpshooter. If you get 36-40 you are an expert and 40 is the best. You have to do this on your first go. I was in the first firing order so I shot at like 8 in the morning. It was cold as fuck - about 15 degrees, completely snowy and miserable - 70% of about 200 people were no goes on the first go round. I shot 36 rounds. I missed 4 and hit 32 on first go, giving me rank of sharpshooter. 4 rounds misfired, which pissed me off. I missed 4 shots fair, but those other four cost me expert at no fault of mine. Well at least I passed on first go and sharpshooter is nothing to be too bummed about. There were no experts out of all 200 and out of 35 in 1st platoon, there were only 4 sharpshooters. You also get to requalify if you want at your unit in a better environment, with a better rifle, magazine and ammo.

Anyhow, sharpshooter, that's my first award in the US Army. WHen I got the award the captain said the drill sergeants have had their eye on me and have been talking about me. The word is I've been doing a pretty good job and it's been noticed and to keep it up. How true? I don't know. Does it mean anything? I don't know, but it was good words of encouragement all the same. I hope I do finish all this doing above average at least.

I had to move bays. At first I thought I was fucked, but it turned out OK. I got put in the very end bunk. It's dark and quiet and far from all the BS near the CQ desk where my old room and bunk was. Here there are only 6 of us and 2 are leaving. One is a nut and I think might already be gone and the other is a blown shoulder. Both are nice guys but that will leave only 4 in our room. One of the guys is now my assigned permanent battle buddy, which means we always work together. The other two are battle buddies. One is kind of a dumb ass, but he's OK. The other one is pretty OK, too. Plus he's on 6 pack detail with me, so that's good having two of us in the same room.

Things have been getting a bit better the past few days. The drills aren't quite so crazy, but that comes and goes. The worst time for their craziness is 4am. I hope they're not crazy tomorrow. Plus, tonight, I got left off fire guard. A whole night's sleep, how nice! :-)

Well, I am going to crash and get the most out of my night.

Take care all. You're all in my thoughts.

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