Alfa 190 Recruit Journal Week 04



Alfa 190 Recruit Journal Week 04

Formed: June 24, 2014

Graduates: August 15, 2014


Week 04 Summary




Week 04 comes to a dramatic close today as our Company Commanders have emphatically warned us, week 01-03 shenanigans will no longer be tolerated. This was very clear this week. Many of us have raised the bar. We had a firearms course this week and are happy to say that, SR Deer and SR Powers got perfect scores out of 50. Our teachers Gunners Mates from the Regiment Training Facility (Petty Officers Hutchens, Schaffer, Parry and Hutchison), made “Marksman” Scorers out of frighteningly clumsily recruits. We were trained fantastically granted a few of us “fake Killed” their shipmates by not following safety guidelines, but for the most part. We were on point!

On the disciplinary end; one squad bay of males decided to rap “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” during squad bay clean up. The sweat hurricane was unleashed.

Week 04 also means that probation belts are being handed out. There are about fifteen of us wearing these glaring red monstrosities. A red belt means a recruit is not up to standards for a variety of reasons, behavior, knowledge and motivation. And the recruits are given five days to improve.

We had our Midterms this week as well, due to a technical glitch; almost half of the company had to take it twice! The sound of gnashing teeth and sweaty palms permeated through the air like a ghost. They (those who faced the glitch) had to retake their Midterm.

We also took our second fitness test. Most of us passed and many improved their scores, but some of us failed again. And now we are placed in Physical Fitness Enhancement classes. The standards must be high. Our aspirations have led us to a serious career.

The Coast Guard wants us at our best not our half-best. And it is our job to deliver the way our Company Commanders, Instructors and the entire Regiment have delivered for us.

The moment we all waited for however, was our “dream sheet” class. This week ALFA-190 got to fill out what District they wished to be stationed at and whether we wanted to be ashore or afloat. Like little lambs lost many of the recruits are hoping to be stationed back home. What we been told is that usually it is unlikely. In many a rousing speech, we’ve been told to embrace our future in the Coast Guard, regardless of where it takes us. There are over one-hundred of us. Each with varying ideas and dreams of what our careers will be; but the lesson we’ve been graced with at the halfway point is not to be caught in one idea or “DREAM”. We could end up anywhere, and that is the adventure we’ve chosen to live. All of these recruits are at the mercy of our duty. Where our duty takes us, we oblige!

This reality hit some of us with a thud, especially younger recruits with boyfriends and girlfriends. But, most of us came into this knowing we are here to serve. To be where ever we are needed.

So, we train we study and we do push-ups. Some of us even learn a thing or two and improve. But, Week 04 is now over. The “BAR” is raised again as we shakily pull ourselves up the next rung of the ladder; we are exhausted. We are always moving, most of us, but we should be. We are being trained to do well here and in the fleet; sandbaggers and lollygaggers need not apply!

This is the mantra, Chief Arseneaux taught us today:

“I have been in the Coast Guard all me bloomin’ life. My father was King Neptune, my mother was a mermaid. I was born on the crest of a wave and rocked in the cradle of the deep. My eyes are stars, me teeth are spars, me hair is hemp and seaweed. When I spits, I spits tar, I’s tough, I is, I am, I are!!”

If this doesn’t fire you up, you’re a zombie!!

Your Alfa is living and breathing their Ethos and this new mantra. Fumbling and stumbling through seamanship knots and M-16 drills, and each respective slip-up leads to one slip-up less.

Keep your letters coming as we fly past the halfway point!

Week 05 here goes nothing!

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.