Thursday, September 17, 2009

Thursday Thoughts

We continue to have internet problems here in our barracks. Apparently, our influx of new residents has overloaded their antique server. So for four of the past five nights, our internet has crashed hard. I've been very frustrated. Living in a war zone is such a bitch!

I discovered this new brand of potato chips in our DFAC. The name says it all. Well, no, it doesn't.

Yesterday was a big day for those of us who are Navy. It was the Chiefs' promotion. Unlike the other services, when an enlisted sailor is promoted to E7, he or she enters into a whole new realm of responsibility. The Navy Chiefs are a special community - they are expected to be leaders of their sailors, trainers of junior officers, and advisors to more senior officers. They even wear a different uniform than junior sailors. Well, except here in Iraq, where they have to wear the ACU's or DCU's (meaning the pajama uniforms like all the other services). And unlike all the other services, all Navy Chiefs go through a rigorous training and indoctrination period together and are all promoted on the same day. Together. Yesterday was that day. Twenty seven sailors were promoted to Chief in a beautiful and moving ceremony at Al Faw Palace.

The Chiefs marched in as a unit singing "Anchors Aweigh" - and very well, too! After the National Anthem was sung a cappella by a Navy Chief, and Rear Admiral Morneau provided some very poignant remarks, the Chiefs were "pinned and covered" - meaning their anchors were pinned on their collars and their new cover with the Chief's insignia was placed on their heads.

Making Chief is not easy. It's a major step in a sailor's career. And this young lady, a newly-minted Chief, had tears streaming down her face. She wasn't the only one.

Congratulations to all our new Navy Chief Petty Officers! You all still make me proud to be part of your company.

1 comment:

David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 09/18/2009 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.