Recruit Journal Papa 188 Week: 06

Recruit Journal Papa 188 Week: 06
Formed: July 16, 2013
Graduate: September 6, 2013

International Maritime Signal Flag Papa

International Maritime Signal Flag Papa

PAPA-188 Monday Week 06- “The Sky Isn’t Falling Chicken Little”
Well now, what do we have here? Looks like little ole’ PAPA company has stepped into week six! It’s called making progress games. Especially since the day started off rather well.

We went back to our fire drill this morning, and added a new exercise to our collection of them. This one is called the superman, where we lay on our bellies and lift our arms and legs like we’re flying. It was more like stationary ground surfing, but not all of us can have wings.
Immediately after our wake up we were heading off to chow, then to seamanship. At seamanship we learned about fires and fire prevention. It sounds like we will get to fight fires tomorrow! How exciting is that right? A bunch of recruits playing with fire…

We went straight to lunch after seamanship, then over to a classroom for our personal wellness class. We had to fill out a questionnaire about our health, all aspects of it. Then we were back at the house for 30 minutes before our next activity. During that time the females did a rack remedial since some of the racks weren’t made, and the males practiced line heaving.

At the gym, we changed out into our swimsuits and headed for the pool. This will be our third time at the pool. All we did was 15 laps swimming back forth, but at least we were in the water!

We had some time with Chief Duncan for manual of arms since our test is this week. We marched around the parade field and over to the reviewing booth as we practiced. Afterwards, some of us had a special IT session with Chief Duncan while the others went outside with Petty Officer Phillips to do a line pulling exercise.

Chow was thrown in there somewhere, and there was another IT session, mainly sniper position. Some of us got our welcome aboard messages from our sponsors, which is exciting! At least now some of us have some more information! Evening routine commenced right after.
In other news, we lost two shipmates, a male and a female. But we gained another female, so that balances it out partially. PAPA is still holding strong.

PAPA-188 Tuesday Week 06- “Fire, Fire, Fire!”
Fire drills continue this morning, waking us up and getting us ready for the day. Chow comes and goes and we are heading off to Goff Hall. It’s our second fire school class with Petty Officer Douthit. Along the way we learned where the cadences originated from. It started back in the Civil War by a man named Willie Duckworth. Since then, cadences have been a military tradition and morale booster.

At Goff Hall we had a review on the different fire extinguishers and how to properly stow them, as well as a rundown of the different jobs held when there is a fire emergency. Then we went outside and got to put out our own fires. It was staged in a trailer where we had to check a door for heat, then open the door and yell “Fire, Fire, Fire!” if we saw fire. Now, where have we heard that before? The madness is starting to make more sense!

Once we sprayed the fire out, we would yell “Fire’s out!” then exit the trailer. Everyone had a go at it before heading back inside and learning about the different gear and equipment used during fires. We even donned a Self Contained Breathing Apparatus that we breathed through and walked around in. We had to go in two groups since there wasn’t enough. The second group ended up getting damp masks because the first group had to wash them after use. Who wants a dirty mask anyway?
We marched ourselves back to the regiment where Chief Hollenbeck took over and marches us to chow. After chow we came back and grabbed our pieces. We were told Chief Hollenbeck was going to oversee our manual of arms test since Chief Frederickson wasn’t here today. Chief Duncan marched us over to the reviewing booth and we went through the test…three times. Each time we got a little bit better, and the test isn’t until tomorrow. We did practice some more though!

After the “test” we came back and got into our inspection ready uniforms for a pre-inspection. We all had little white fuzzies on us and need to work on our boondockers. There was a cybex workout right after, where we did drop sets on the machines. We had to change out before chow, then right after was our second class with Petty Officer Dooly. We found out more about the money side of the travel during this class. We even got to speak with Mr. Rae (the Regimental Officer) right before the class.

There was another session of manual of arms practice with Petty Officer Phillips, then a trip down to the computer lab. We filled out an information form to be sent off to our units to let them know we are coming. A small amount of time was used to go over what we needed to bring tomorrow to the uniform distribution center too. Good thing too because we all would have been lost! Evening routine went smoothly, minus the people on the pain list, but we made it through.
PAPA-188 Wednesday Week 06- “PAPA Company Is The Best!”

Today has been an exciting day! It didn’t start out that way at first though. When we had gotten up and were marching to chow it was like we had a cloud following us. We were worrying over our manual of arms test, required knowledge that could be asked and our uniform inspection. Our first class set some of those worries on the back burner a little as we got to handle fire hoses. We had split up into two groups since there weren’t enough air tanks for everyone. Each group went to the repair locker and changed into a fire suit, boots and flash cover. Then we headed into the next room where the SCBA tanks were. We put those on, strapped in and then donned the fire fighting helmets.

Once we were dressed and ready to go, we split into four fire teams making sure we held the person’s shoulder in front of us. Then we entered the smoke filled room, making sure to keep low and follow the fire hose. Each team had their own hose that they needed to follow. There were three people on the hose while the fourth stood at the shutoff valve. We rotated though each person so they got to do all the jobs. While acting as the nozzleman we went through the three different sprays, spraying the fire. It’s a simulated of course!

When both of the groups had gone through, Petty Officer Douthit let us know that we were one of the better companies to come through fire school. Apparently recruits make a lot of mistakes, like turtle backing, raising the hose over their heads or even feeding the hose into the “fire.” We didn’t do any of that. We’re just setting the standard is all.

After fire school, we were marched back by Petty Officer Phillips to chow. Our company was picked, so we had two special guests eat with us. A Mr. and Mrs. Weisburg. Mr. Weisburg was celebrating his 50th year since boot camp (this day) and was taking a tour around the base. We learned that boot camp was 13 weeks! He had also been stations all over, even at LORAN stations. It was great getting to learn from him.

We high tailed it back to the house to get our pieces. We were having our manual of arms test before Chief Frederickson had to leave. We formed up outside thinking we were going to march over to the reviewing booth. Instead it ended up taking place right in front of our front doors. Chief Hollenbeck gave us a small pep talk before Chief Duncan took over and ran us through the sequence. Chief Frederickson asked five of us questions about manual of arms then graded us.
We waited, for what seemed like forever but was really only a few minutes, before finally getting our verdict. Our score was a 10. It took a moment for that to sink into our skulls because everyone was expecting something lower, not a perfect! When it did sink in, we had to keep our excitement contained. This was a really big deal for us because 10’s are hardly ever given out, and it was Chief Frederickson’s first one he gave. Not to mention there were zero gigs against us!
Chief Frederickson had to leave so we didn’t do our uniform inspection, so Chief Hollenbeck asked us who wanted to go on a run. Everyone’s hand shot up, we were pumped after that test! Everyone changed out and stretched, then marched over to the track. We ran around the track once as a company before stepping off and doing a company run. Our run took us all over the base and back around again to finish at the track. We sung cadences the whole way.

There was some stretching, then we marched back to the house. As we turned down the path between the classroom building and our house, our guide-on was told to put the flag in the ground. Then Seaman Recruit Simko was asked if she saw anything. When she replied, ‘yes,’ Chief Hollenbeck told her to go get it. As soon as she took off, he told the rest of the company the same and we all made a mad dash for our colors with its two pennants waiting for us on the parade field. We all crowded around it, whooping and hollering, lifting up like the proud company we are.

We formed ourselves up, once we had settled a little, and marched back over to our company commanders. We were then instructed to go change out for our next class, which was a trip to the uniform distribution center. For this excursion we had to pack our seabags with everything we had gotten last time, plus carry our trousers and Bravo jackets.

When everyone was resized, we marched back to stow our things. We are even singing cadences as we march now! Chow was next, then we practiced our close order drills (marching). We will be having a test on that next week. We did some squad bay maintenance and boondocker shining before sliding into evening routine on a very satisfying day. We earned our colors before OSCAR did in their week 06, and we are not going to self revert anymore. Hoist your colors high PAPA!

PAPA-188 Thursday Week 06- “Becoming Official”
Fire, fire fire happened this morning, but then we were quickly off to chow. We split up into two groups after chow so we wouldn’t overwhelm the Identification card personnel. We received our military ID’s today! It was pretty exciting since that is just one step closer to official for us.

Those of us who didn’t go to the administration building first when to the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard’s hall for a class on Career Counseling. We were shown how to check ‘A’ school lists, message boards and information on school courses.

Afterwards, we had lunch chow, then we were off to pugil sticks. We got to bash each others faces in again! (not literally) There was a class on household goods and how we are supposed to ship them if we want them shipped, then chow again~. We even learned a new cadence, though we have to work on our singing…
We practiced our close order drill with Petty Officer Phillips and Chief Hollenbeck, really needing to work on our backwards march. There was talk of heading to the gym, but we got cut off by a storm rolling in. Instead, we cleaned our respective squad bays ladder wells and then shined our boondockers. We shined up until evening muster where we began evening routine. During that time we found out that one of our shipmates that went to RAMP (Recruit Aptitude Motivational Program) had made it back tonight. Now the others just need to make it!

PAPA-188 Friday Week 06- “Hyped Up On Monster And Redbull”
We had our routine fire drill then we were off to chow. Along the way, Chief Hollenbeck taught us a new cadence that we need to learn to perfection. When we came back we slipped into our tropical blue dress uniform to get it inspected. Not all of us passed so we changed out and did some piece IT (Incentive Training).

After our IT session, we had some time to clean the squad bays then work on shining our low quarters (dress shoes). When that time was up we spent about 45 minutes in the computer lab working on our first unit reporting guide and getting in contact with our sponsors or units.

At lunch chow, we had the honor of the Senior Enlisted Group joining us. We learned a lot from them and found out that some of them were on some of the cutters we were going to. We had to scurry back to the squad bays and grab our rucksacks for our next class though, which was with Lieutenant Commander Bethea. We watched a short clip on sexual assault then had a discussion about it and how to prevent it.

Next we changed into our physical fitness gear, thinking we were going running. Instead we grabbed our rucksacks and headed to the gym, learning new cadences from Petty Officer Garver. For our swim circuit we did 20 laps this time instead of the 15 we had done before.

We had dinner chow after, then we had a vote on what we wanted our t-shirt design to be. We did get our run! All the choir shipmates left while the rest of us changed back into our physical fitness gear. We were going to be running the Munro Mile. It’s basically a mile the fastest we could run. Both Papa and Oscar ran it (what was left of us) and had some friendly competition between the two. It was top 3 males and top 3 females that were scored and recorded. Our fastest runner, Seaman Recruit Hahn ran his mile in 5:32!

Later that evening, we got into our tropical blues for Petty Officer Garver and learned some new tricks. Now it’s just a matter of using those tricks. During that time our cell phones where pulled out. We haven’t seen these things in six weeks. It’s a wonder we knew what they were! These were pulled out so they could start charging in preparation for our on base liberty tomorrow. Everyone’s excited about that!

TANGO company started indoctrination weekend today and they moved into the squad bay a deck below us. It should be interesting. During mail call, we placed our orders for our shirts. There were also “flamingo position take,” face names explained and other words of nonsense before getting a motivational speech from Petty Officer Garver. Finally it was lights out with excitement still bubbling for our liberty tomorrow.

PAPA-188 Saturday Week 06- “A Growing Menagerie”
Today was a special day for us~ We started the morning off by joining together with OSCAR for a run. We ran around base for a while, long enough to run almost 4 miles, singing cadences all the way.

After our run, we were met at the squad bay by our chipmunks (those shipmates who had their wisdom teeth taken out). They made it out safely enough. We headed off to chow once we had changed before coming back and practicing our close order drills. We also changed into our bravo uniforms, which are the winter versions, with our combination cover for an inspection.

Because of some discrepancies with shows and where they needed to be placed we had an IT session with our pieces. We had chow soon after before marching off to the piers. Seaman O’Connor gave us a small tour of the 25’ and 45’ response boats. Then we marched down the pier to the 210’ USCG Cutter Vigorous, where we split into two groups. We got a tour of the fantail, flight deck, foc’sle, bridge, mess hall and one group got to see the berthing area. It was a lot of fun and it was a good experience learning about the different boats/vessles.

We had a short question and answer session with Chief Hollenbeck and Chief Duncan about our tour before we received our cell phones and the ground rules layed before us. The rules tended to repeat themselves, but we listened to them all. Then we were let loose upon the base.

All of us made our way over to the Exchange first where most of us bought candy, coffee, ice cream or the like. Then we headed over to the Harborview. This is where most of us pulled out our phones and immediately began talking. We all pretty much stayed on the phone, pausing only enough to order our challenge coins, eat or march up to the pavilion when the Harborview closed.The day came to a close back at the squad bay with returning our phones. Overall it was a very good day!

PAPA-188 Sunday Week 06- “And It Won’t Be Long~”
We woke up, or rather we were woken up earlier this morning in order to make it to chow. Back at the squad bay, we were taught two new cadences by Petty Officer Garver and practiced those until divine hours. During our divine hours we spend a lot of time on uniforms, making sure they were in top shape for our inspections next week!

When divine hours had ended we practiced our close order drill with Chief Duncan. We had a piece IT session to finish making up for our mistake yesterday, then did some more close order drill practice. That test is going to be on Tuesday.

Chief Hollenbeck collected us and marched us over to the track for a quick workout. We did a lap, then 30 squats and 30 cherry pickers as well as 5 pull ups. We did this four times before marching back. We turned in our money for our t-shirts before heading off to chow.

Once we had all of that taken care of we got ready for our run. Chief Frederickson joined us on this run! We even sang the new cadences we learned. Plus, there was one cadence that we had been working on, where we would clap as our left foot came down and people started joining in on the clapping! Seems like that was a success! The rest of the evening was spent getting some paperwork straight and evening routine.

Recruit Journal written by Seaman Recruit Waitman, C.L.


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.