A little while back I got to thinking about what our cadets have planned for the summer, and how unique those opportunities are, and the type of out of the ordinary things we do in the military. After living in the North Country for a few years, and encountering many people who have never lived any other place than Northern New York, one of the first things about the Army that comes to mind is the opportunity to travel and live in other places. Here is a chronology of where I have lived/served:
While in Afghanistan I visited Uzbechistan, Kyrgystan, and Qatar.
The Army also provides the opportunity to do many things that are unique to the military. I’ve learned a lot of valuable skills like navigating with a map and compass, working with tactical radios, firing weapons and helping others learn Basic Rifle Marksmanship. I’ve Briefed Generals, and counseled privates. I’ve driven HMMVWs and ridden in Blackhawk, Huey, and Chinook helicopters. I’ve driven a manual transmission pickup truck with a steering wheel on the right side, shifting with my left hand in Afghanistan. I’ve jumped out of airplanes, and driven in the dark of night with night vision goggles. I’ve wandered around the woods at night with a map and compass, and I’ve slept on the ground, under the stars, more than a couple times. Most of my peers and coworkers have similar experiences, and we love nothing more than to tell the “war story” about doing something out of the ordinary. If you are the type of person who would like to do things like the things I have described I would encourage you to talk to veterans, or people who are currently serving. If you find that you want to give it a try talk to an Army ROTC program or a recruiter in your area. http://www.goarmy.com is a good place to start exploring how to have your own adventures and start living your own “war story”.