Recruit Journal Mike 188 Week: 07

Recruit Journal Mike 188 Week: 07
Formed: June 18, 2013
Graduate: August 9, 2013

International Maritime Signal Flag Mike

International Maritime Signal Flag Mike

Day 01 of week 07 was a pretty unique experience for Mike-188. All of us recruits can feel the mounting pressure of being a senior company on base. We also began our first challenge of many more to follow from Master Chief Berry. Our week 07 schedule is also very different from what we are used to. This morning we had breakfast chow at a mind-staggeringly late 0715… we were ravenous by the time we got to the galley! But Mike really should be easing up on our caloric in-take, because we are getting officially weighed tomorrow.

We had some very interesting classes today, first was hazing. It’s sad to hear that people get bullied in the Coast Guard because that seems like something little kids would do, however it was important to learn that it does still happen and we can recognize it and try to prevent it. The next class was a CPR and first aid lecture then the practical. We went to the gym and put together dummies (adult and child) and practiced the proper CPR method. We also practiced how to carry a victim out of a dangerous area. The first round was the chair where the “victim” was conscious and sitting upright, and the other was if the victim was unconscious… We basically dragged each other on the floor across the gym. It was very informative and it feels good to know we would be prepared in an actual emergency.

At 2030, Master Chief Berry dropped in on Mike up in Healy Hall. He had a team-building challenge for us- we had to totally destroy our squad bays and put them back together again in 49 minutes. All of us were hustling and scrambling to get everything in pristine condition. We ended up being 02 minutes late (which docked us a few points) and a few shipmates had rack discrepancies. All-in-all, it was not bad though. Hope you all are enjoying our posts – Mike-188 signing out

Mike-188 signing in! Our company’s Tuesday went pretty darn well. We were jolted into action this morning with our typical “FIRE, FIRE, FIRE Fashion. We also ran 02 laps around the parade field. Petty Officer Aulph pushed us to sweat, because we had our weight taken today. Most recruits lost some pounds; a few lost over 10 pounds of unnecessary mass. Not a single Mike recruit was over the weight limit. Now, when the basic training blues slump in, we can always take pride in our ever-sliming waist lines!

This morning Petty Officer Aulph marched us to our seamanship class. On the way, he sang a few catchy cadences. The last one he taught us was pretty funny… it took some solid Cape May bred discipline not to show our teeth. At seamanship we learned about heaving lines. The company got to go outside into the beautiful Jersey sunshine and practice tossing lines around. A few shipmates were clueless as to the proper way to do so, but Petty Officer Buckley helped them out. We also had our closed book seamanship final; Mike did not earn the Seamanship Pennant. We came close, but just could not quite get our average high enough.
The grand finale of our Tuesday consisted of our tropical dress uniform inspection and our close-order drill test. As a whole we did well on the uniform inspection. Mike-188 made a “09” on our close order drill test (this was a marching test). It seemed like our section and company commanders were pleased with our performance. They said our movements were precise and tight. We are pretty proud of our team work. Mike-188 is slowly coming together. Fill you in tomorrow! Until next time, Mike-188.

So… Mike-188 started off our morning with a tasty surprise… Donuts and Danishes! Yesterday we finally earned the right to eat desserts at chow. Hardened recruits were turning into kids at a candy shop. We were all so happy! With our bellies full of sweet goodness, Mike continued on with our week 07 Wednesday.
This morning at 0800, 07 recruits were chosen to go in front of the recruiter training students to share our own personal experiences with our Coast Guard Recruiters and boot camp in general. It really was an awesome experience for the recruits who were chosen. We were able to spill out all of our thoughts on the last 07 weeks to them. In return, the class of soon-to-be recruiters drilled us with questions they wanted answers too. They gave us some good advice for us to carry on to the fleet.

Mike had its final seamanship class today. We donned hard hats, safety vests, and grabbed some lines for an hour long hands on training. We worked with using heaving lines, bollards, bitts, and cleats. It was a little sad to say goodbye to seamanship, but then again that means Mike is one step closer to graduation!
The recruits had a long period of administration time today-which is time allotted to us so that we can get to call our units, study, conduct research on the internet at the computer lab, and generally get squared away. We have more administrative time tomorrow as well. Mike is also practicing for our physical tests that we will undergo next week with Master Chief Berry. We did as many sit-ups and pushups as we could do in a certain time limit. It was fun to push ourselves. Can’t wait to see what Thursday will hold for us. Fill you in later! –Mike-188

Thursday was a pretty successful day I’d say! We started with a morning workout in the gym. We were also given more administrative time. It is nice to finally have time to get our next couple of weeks planned. Some recruits are going straight to their units but most are planning a well deserved short vacation home.
Another awesome thing today, we signed our orders! That was exciting and our yeoman Petty Officer Ladson is really helpful and hilarious. Its nice to be able to ask her a questions and not have to “get on your face” or “sweat”! She also answered a lot of our questions about units, housing and next step questions in general. She had a lot of funny stories about her husband and baby and how the Coast Guard affects them as well. After that, we had our next class the ever uncomfortable STD class. We talked about how, why and where people contract STDS and more importantly how to prevent them! The class was interesting in the fact we learned certain polices on contracting STDs in the Coast Guard and if you can be disciplined for them. The answer was no, with some stipulations.
After all the classes we had a fun surprise, Chief Blackman sat down with us for a few minutes and gave us some advice, some motivation, and a few personal stories. It seems the longer we are here the more willing our company commanders are to share insight on the outside world with us. We have come to the point where Mike is finally dialed in. we have been getting compliments from our company commanders and positive reinforcements. I think we also have realized team work and effort are the most important aspects of being successful in boot camp. We’ve been told a thousand times and just within the last week we have come together as a well oiled machine. Mike Machine, that is. Keep you updated as always. –Mike Company

Today was another wonderful day for Mike Company. We woke up and drank our newly permitted coffee and scurried right over to our 0800 final. As a whole we did a good job but we did not receive the academic pennant to hang on to Medusa (our colors).After our final we participated in Lima Company’s graduation ceremony and it was so fulfilling! They are only one week ahead of us and I think it opened our eyes to see how truly close our graduation day is. We all are trying our hardest to stay locked on but as Chief Blackman says “we have our eyes on the prize”. The graduation ceremony was awesome and inspiring (as they usually are), and we marched pass the stands they yelled “MIKE-188” or “YOU’RE NEXT” or “GREAT JOB”. We couldn’t help but to swell with pride.

This entire week has been an ego boost for Mike-188. The switch in attitude and confidence is mind boggling. All of the sudden, we are a tight knit crew helping each other, getting along, and handling business. I can say this is the peak of our entire recruit training. Later on we were allowed to re-do the confidence course and it was a huge change as well. We flew through that thing like it was ours. We owned it! We had a majority of the company climb up the dreaded rope the cheering and encouragement was motivating but the real boost came from our company commanders when they told us they were proud of us.We also raised the Mike Company colors on the regimental flag pole which was the best feeling in the world. We celebrated with some incentive training. We ended the night with some quality time with Petty Officer Lacharite. Until next time—Mike-188

Mike-188 signing in. Today was the celebration of the Coast Guard’s Birthday. So we celebrated with a softball game, recruits verses the Chiefs. It was a strong fight and the recruits lost. But it was a pretty close game, (by the end of the third inning it was about 20-02). Although we got our behinds handed to us we had fun and saw the chiefs lighten up and laugh a bit. All the chiefs were really good at softball and hit the ball really far while Mike Company only had about four hits. Our outfielders seemed to be running non-stop to the fence and back. We also had a volley ball game where the recruits played against each other. It was a really fun morning and it was exciting to interact with each other on a relaxed level and have fun on the regiment.

After our morning with the Chiefs we had our much awaited liberty. We actually got to go off-base for liberty as a company without supervision! We took taxis into town and the recruits separated and went off to downtown Cape May or Rio Grande or Wildwood. Downtown Cape May is a little nicer and more calm during the day and the recruits who went said their food was really good and they had a great time. The recruits who went to Wildwood were a little surprised at how busy it was and there was nowhere to sit and relax. There were tons of shore stores filled with shirts and sunglasses and also junk food sure to give us belly aches for days. The recruits who went to Rio Grande basically walked back and forth between the Starbucks or the Wawa Convenience store.
I think the most special part of the day was when random people off the streets would come up to us recruits and thank us for joining the Coast Guard. It was the most amazing feeling in the world. Even some kids came up to us and asked about our uniforms and how we liked being in the military. Although we don’t have any experience in the outside world as “real coasties” we loved the attention. We ended our fun filled day with personal time with Petty Officer Aulph where we found out he loves music and his country. Signing out—Mike-188

Editor’s Note: This blog post was written by a recruit currently involved in Coast Guard basic training. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this Journal do not necessarily reflect those of Training Center Cape May, the U.S. Coast Guard or the federal government and are the sole opinion of the author. Recruit Journals are written by personnel in a high-stress environment with little time, so please excuse grammar and punctuation in the above article. The staff at Training Center Cape May do not edit the journals in any way, so as to ensure authenticity of the content and messages.

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