Well, I am done here in Louisiana - it has been hot and muggy most of the time, accompanied with afternoon thunderstorms which you would hope would cool things down, but really just make you soaked and hot.
The training here is the best you can get without actually going into a combat zone, there are whole villages with real people role-playing Iraqis, and a US Army unit that plays the insurgency, and the best laser-tag system in the world.
Our team had never worked together before, so there were lots of issues to work out and team building to be done. By design or not, our commander has managed to alienate all the enlisted, thereby causing us to bond together in our frustration with his style. I will not go into any rants at this point, as I am inclined to give the man some time to grow into what is after all a new role for him too.
The group of men I am serving with are from California and Colorado units, with some men from other States including Arizona, Wyoming, and Texas. The last time I served in a composite unit it turned nasty with the MN parent unit having a lot of disdain and lack of understanding of the Cali Soldiers attached to them. This time there is nothing of the sort, but the Active Duty unit we are attached to does have quite a bit of institutional bias against Guardsmen.
Rant: The fact that most of the Guard guys have more military experience and vast civilian skills seems lost on them. And without exception Guard Soldiers work much harder than Active Soldiers, who seem to think they are on some form of workfare.
We were supposed to fly out of here today on a C5, but the Air Force couldn't get all the engines to start, so we are stuck here tonight and will try again tomorrow.
And lastly, this absurdity of the week:
Do you have thoughts of killing others?
- from a pre-deployment mental health survey
Answering yes to this will earn you a trip to a psychologist. I'm confused, we're getting ready to deploy, we spend all day practicing how to killing the enemy. WTFO?