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USAF

Reenlistment

Posted on 2012.02.22 at 11:40
Current Location: 67114
Tags: , ,

I dreamed I reenlisted. It was all at once unbelievable yet wholly satisfying. I was the only one smiling on the buys full of recruits as we made our way to Goodfellow Air Force Base. I was downright giddy. I was ready for this. This change, this return to the familiar. I was surprised that I was willing to do it again to be sure, but it felt like it would be a marvelously fulfilling endeavor.

I was sitting on the porch swing with my father, entirely content, when I made the decision.

We arrived late at night, the barracks were like a mostly deserted airport terminal - desks with brochures, vending machines, soldiers and airman lounging around in fatigues. I made my way to a lady behind a desk marked, "INFORMATION" and cheerfully asked where I was supposed to go next. She was very discouraging and rude so I asked her why. She explained that while all this was obviously new to me and I was excited, she did the same thing day in and day out and we all just looked alike to her.

Undaunted I found my room at the end of a lime-green painted cinderblock hallway - I was at the end on the left - and met two of my three roommates for the night; we'd be separated into our flights once in-processing was concluded tomorrow morning. I wasn't at all sleepy though I found out we were to get up and ready for formation at 0445 despite the bus not arriving until well after midnight, so I wandered the halls, taking it all in. The excitement, the challenges, the rewards.

Then I started freaking out.

I didn't have my duffle bag. I didn't have my uniform. I remember moving my wife and baby son into my folks house, but I didn't remember telling them I was going to enlist. I decided to call her, but was so excited about heading out I'd forgotten to pack my cell phone. That was really unusual. Then I remembered where I got my cell phone - my employer! I'D FORGOTTEN TO TELL MY EMPLOYER I WAS ENLISTING AGAIN!

I was going to lose my paycheck and start making...$800 a month again. A sinking feeling hit me as I desperately tried to find a bank of AT&T overseas phones to call my wife. My swearing-in ceremony was in just a few hours and was completely panicked about how to proceed. At least I had my wallet. I did run into Jim Worley, my old neighbor and coworker, who was a Master Sergeant, dressed in blues, doing early-morning administrative work there.

I went outside and was in Korea again.

I was standing on the same corner I traverse in all my dreams of Korea, and was aware this might not be real, rather a dream. The word, "surreal" came to mind and I marveled at the knowledge that I was where I was and how I got here and how it felt being here knowing I was only dreaming. I was going to take a picture for my livejournal friends with my fisheye lens so I could show them once and for all everything I see and feel when I discuss being in Korea. Not the real Korea perhaps, but the subconscious facsimile as I create it. It was overwhelming and magnificent.

And it was real. A visceral experience I alone was able to relish. Not just a place, but a construct. Like opening my mind to fantastic destinations without having to travel.

Comments:


CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2012-02-23 04:25 (UTC) (Link)
Can I have some of what ever you are smoking before you go to bed???

Edited at 2012-02-23 05:33 am (UTC)
Michelle1963
michelle1963 at 2012-02-25 04:43 (UTC) (Link)
I am so envious of your vivid dreams. I have them so rarely. That said, that feeling of not being in control that you describe is always uncomfortable. In your case, you forgot to communicate your intentions; in my dreams this manifests as I need to be somewhere at a specific time, can't get there, and can't communicate to the person I'm supposed to meet. That feeling of panic is not fun.
(Anonymous) at 2012-02-27 18:23 (UTC) (Link)

good fellow connections

This past week we managed to get our house in atlanta rented/with option to buy. We met the future buyers this weekend as we moved the last of our "staging" furniture out of there. The wife was a pottery teacher/shop owner of one of those paint your own pottery places. I love that shit...there's something so relaxing in the tedium, even if I am a shitty painter. Anyway, turns out that she once lived in San Angelo (in the early 90's!) and that she worked in the pottery shop that was on base at Goodfellow. I painted a few pieces of pottery there and still have one small ceramic cat from that shop. The other I sent to a friend that was stationed in Korea.

feelin' the waves....
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