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The Dreaded Drill Weekend

As I may have said earlier, my current unit decided to do a five mile ruck march as well as an ASU (dress uniform, formerly known as Class As) for the same weekend. The whole weekend was also going to be in Los Alamitos, on the L.A. County border. I bought an airline ticket because Los Al adds two hours to my drive into California. On Friday, I loaded up my three pieces of checked luggage and drove up to Phoenix Sky Harbor airport to get a flight to Long Beach.

My 1540 flight loaded and started down the runway just fine. As it sped up for takeoff though, the pilot suddenly hit the brakes. Something was coming up as being wrong on his dashboard, and he had to abort takeoff. We returned to the terminal.

We were told there was a replacement plane and that it would leave at 1800. The plane arrived, they cleaned it out--and it didn't pass pre-boarding checks.

At this point, the airline (US Air) was trying to get anyone who had no luggage onto flights to LAX. That was not going to help me, so I texted ahead to let people know I'd be on the next flight to Long Beach.

The next flight was at 1540 the next day, which meant I'd miss the ruck march. I was certainly okay with that and went home.

I had a nice breakfast out with Steve the next day and we drove back up to Phoenix. I got my flight and it departed without issue. My luggage was waiting for me in Long Beach, which I think may be one of my favourite airports. It is a repurposed military airbase from World War II, and baggage claim and ticketing are outdoors. The restaurants are supposed to be excellent, though I didn't get to try them, and the rental car outlet had me on the road in no time.

A major was celebrating being promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, and he'd bought drinks in advance for the entire unit, or at least people who said they'd be coming. I had some guacamole and chips, two beers, and a glass of wine because FREE BOOZE THAT'S WHY. I had some great conversations with my unit-mates and then ol' Major T. and I retired to the patio for cigars. My roommate hadn't come to drill, so I had my room in the lodge to myself.

My ASUs still fit me, so that was a big plus. ASU inspection was tedious as expected, but then we went to the American Legion for our holiday party. This meant two hours--no exaggeration--of awards being handed out. I received another Army Commendation Medal, so that was great. Todd and Lourdes took photos and they can be seen elsewhere.

The Ladies Auxiliary made a great holiday dinner. We were dismissed at 1300 and I went over to go visit Sandra from San Antonio at her Orange County digs. She and her husband Victor are artists who are currently heavily involved in the Chicano arts scene in Santa Ana. She and I hung out, and talked art and music, and then went to get Bolivian empanadas and pick up Vic over at the Bowers Museum.

I made my flight again and arrived back in Phoenix. Steve and I were delayed by an accident on the I-10. I hit the hay around midnight and woke up with an itchy throat and coughing. I was told, "Don't bring that here," by work, so I stayed in and watched five episodes of "Bob's Burgers", two horror movies, and three episodes of "Arrow".

Ready for work tomorrow!


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 11th, 2014 12:10 pm (UTC)
Congratulations on your ARCOM - and the free booze! :)
Dec. 13th, 2014 05:22 am (UTC)
Congrats on the medal :) Also, Arrow is awesome
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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