Stories From Boot Camp

As promised, I’m gonna tell you a few of my stories (actual events) while I attended Basic Training.

When I arrived at Fort Jackson, S.C. for my training, it was dark and mysterious looking.  Also quiet and civil. Until we unloaded off the bus that brought us (men and women) to the doorsteps of reception station. Didn’t even knew what that meant.  After lining up, we were greeted by the drill sergeants and then as cool as they welcomed us all, they told us to begin separating allowed stuff from not allowed stuff. Then, with all the not allowed stuff, it was disposed into a large garbage can, never to be seen again. ‘Welcome to the military’, I said in my mind as we proceeded to be processed in. Now the men were separated from the women at this point because they have assigned barracks for them and the women have their own assigned to them. No fraternization, no intimate or late night hooligans.  They made sure of that: by spacing us quite a great distance from each other. It was like there was no women for the men and for the men, there was no women. Out of sight, out of mind.

So here we ladies are. 50 of us living in an archaic 1940’s looking barracks that looked preserved for posterity. Twenty- five living on the first floor, twenty-five living on the second floor.  So we’re being briefed on things we need to adhere, care packages was among the topic. Absolutely no exception were we to have ‘sweets’ (hard candies, cookies, cakes, etc- you know) in the care package or in your possession.  So here we are into the third week if boot camp.  At the end of our day, we gather for our mail and stuff.

The mail was distributed and all packages. The drill sergeants went to their office as usual before leaving. I was on the second floor when it all happened.  Immediately, we heard the serious tone of the drill sergeants as we huddled into formation on the first floor. As he walked menacingly between the lines on the floor’s aisle, he asked us, “who does this candy wrapper belong to?”.  All the offender had to do was confess: she had the candy and we could have gone on with our business.  So after waiting and hearing all these women gripe on the air pleading with whoever the individual was who got the candy to just come forward, the drill sergeant  came back with his own punishing resolution.

“All right”, he begins. “No one wants to come forward. OK.”

 In my head I’m like, “ok? So you’re gonna let this slide, right?” Then his voice I declare went two octaves down as he commanded us “Half right face!” Next thing unpleasing was we all had to do pushups- wait, not just hand to floor pushups- with our toes on top of the footlockers near every bed. Every one of us was positioned so that we shared a corner footlocker in order to do it.  And it was excruciatingly painful as we counted off.  I think we got to 5 or something before the offender finally admitted it had came from her. There was only four care packages at that time. Since that incident, I told my folks don’t send me any care packages.

That was an interesting way to start off boot camp. Eventually that lady left boot camp. Yeah, I know I thought once you signed up yours stuck, but somehow she and the drill sergeants found a loophole and she left on a general discharge.

Well, I’ve got more stories to come. Someday I’ll read your stories too.


Daily Prompt: Vigor

Tell me, when do you feel at your best? The height of feeling you can accomplish anything set before you can only be described as vigor.  You’ve got your life, health, strength and common sense intact. You’ve got a job, children and a place to live.  This makes you feel stronger than comparison.

 And then you  see and appreciate all that you go through because, hey, you made it one more day!! That took a lot of vigor and endurance just to last in an uncertain time to see the day end and the night begins.  See you again in the a.m.

Daily Prompt: Pungent

Have you heard the expression:”too much of a good thing is bad for you”? The power of suggestion is no longer further from the truth. Take smoking. Whatever it is, cigarettes, marijuana, etc, it’s no good. And who would want the above anyway with its lingering powerful pungent smell that could repel your sweetest religious grandma!  Or take coffee breath, or decaying rotten onions in your forgotten cabinet of wasted products! Eeww!!

Even a bad fragrance that was meant to do no harm cries foul in the attempt to cover up a nefarious bad pungent odor.  And don’t get me started on the fragrance good money was paid only to disappoint as a gift!  Oh, my! When can a pungent odor be good? Heck, don’t ask me! Ask that rotting flower that blooms once a year!! 

 Sorry, but I’m gagging. Gotta go outside for some real air or else there will be no escape!  Run!

Daily Prompt: Liminal

How can we be left behind when we never crossed over to begin with? People claimed they have seen heaven or hell and return to dish out the details.  Is something wrong with that picture or am I the unfortunate liminal victim? Anyone?? Anywhere???

Daily Prompt: Sated

    Written by: Ms. P. Johnson

What comes to mind when you think of being overly satisfied?

  • Complete
  • Fulfilled
  • Overjoyed
  • Stuffed
  • Vigorous
  • Marriage/children
  • Euphoric
  • Full

 There are life’s pleasures that we can feast on so desirably so that we can be wanting for nothing. But is it good for man or woman to be that sated to the point of not craving for the little things taken for granted by our society? I refuse to be that complacent.  I refuse to be that sated person, content in an overstuffed, patted down lake of assimilation.  After feeling numbed from a greedy and satisfying lifestyle, the cycle seems to circumvent itself around. So cheers to my half empty glass!


“Thanksgiving with Soldiers Overseas”

       It just so happened that I turned to CNN news this morning and caught this interview with U.S. Undersecretary of the Army Patrick J. Murphy with our American troops stationed in Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.  It is a military installation that holds all of the U.S. Armed Forces – Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard- as well as troops from Australia, Romania, the United Kingdom and Poland that are also deployed there.

   On this Thanksgiving day, we always seem to forget those of our men and women serving overseas as if they do not exist. Except if you have family members or friends in the military would your mind glimpse into the thoughts of them and maybe reach out to share words, no one will ever remember we have servicemen and servicewomen across the globe still defending in a war that seems unending.  It is shows like CNN news that keeps them in our foresight and to remember them at some point of our day.

So as we gather with friends and/or family, let us please remember our soldiers overseas who couldn’t be with their respective families at the dinner table. Keep them in our Thanksgiving prayers.

Daily Prompt:Anticipation

Written by: Ms. P. Johnson
      What would you say if I told you “I love you”? Would you think it to mean as a relationship between two people? Or as a parent to a child? Or would it mean an embarrassing obsession towards inanimate objects? Doesn’t really matter because its the anticipation of desire, the true feeling of being in the moment is what counts!


Please select your service to you’re country.  Thank you for your participation.

Daily Prompt: Aromatic

via Daily Prompt:

Written by: Ms. P. Johnson

Something smells so good in the kitchen. What could it be? My grandma’s favorite beef stew brewing or is it my sister’s one of kind meatloaf with onions, carrots and potatoes?  Whatever it is, the aromatics alone makes me feel like I’m eating it before it’s on my plate.


One Nation, One Blood

Hi! I’m back again for all my fellow veterans and their families.  

As the world know, we have elected a new president: President- elect Donald Trump.  He will become our Commander in Chief; for our younger generation. Some can accept this new and uneasy transition of power. And some rally the world on protest. Nevertheless, it is what it is.  Our nation us torn.

Much like our soldiers who come home from war torn countries, witnessing the worst of humanity and having to yet discover their waking thought about coming home to a peaceful place is now filled with sincere division and opposition.

I’m not a political person, for we all have a voice and opinions. However I want my veteran family to know this is what the pursuit of freedom looks like.  We must remember that we are one nation of multifaceted people who are banded together in the blood our forefathers, friends and family service members have shed to keep us strong in the eyes of our Allied forces.

Never forget the reason why you served and as we go into a new year in 2017, don’t let politics dissuade you or make you feel ashamed of the times you went to defend our nation, friends and family.

Be strong!! You are our nation’s greatest!