Delta 191 Recruit Journal Week 03



Delta 191 Recruit Journal

Formed: April 7, 2015

Graduates: May 29, 2015



Week 03 Historian Summary


Week 03 has been the week where we learned of all the forces that shape us here in Cape May. We learned about the cold and how it turns training outside from fun group activity (haha) to a test of physical and psychological limits. Delta also practiced survival swimming techniques wearing full body suits designed to fight hypothermia. The pool we practiced in is not freezing, but Delta was not eager to request the real deal.

Delta also started to learn about the force of teamwork. During a cardio circuit at the gym, we looked like it beat us in the first two minutes, but something inside Delta roared and the whole company became energized. Delta starting chanting their own war-cries and surged through the workout. Now, Delta still has to do more than show team spirit. But at least Delta has the theory if not the practice.

The third force Delta experienced this week is the force of nature in Cape May. Seagulls are everywhere. They perch on buildings and watch us do pushups at 0540 in the morning. They mockingly laugh overhead as we stutter butchered answers to questions our Company Commanders ask of us. The theory was that the seagulls are on the Coast Guard payroll as mini Company Commanders. However, Petty Officer Burke’s disdain for the creatures made it clear that Cape May does not recognize the authority of the water fowl. As he put it, “If those birds don’t get out of your way, you march right through them! They think they own this place, but they don’t!”

Delta is also quickly learning about the force of gravity. We have received our dummy M-16’s. They are non-functional replicas with all the weight. One favorite incentive training method of ours is the “Quiet Game.” The words quiet and game would make it fun if the object of the game was not to hold the dummy M-16 until we are told otherwise. By the end of this, all of Delta will have shoulders of steel.

Lastly, Delta has been fully understanding of the force of time. Week 03 seems to be the first time Delta has emerged from the infancy of our first days here. In the past week, Delta has been given increasing amounts of trust and responsibility by our Company Commanders. Delta is starting to be trusted to march themselves to and from class, to know information expected of a Coast Guardsman, and to walk and talk like a Recruit who is heading into week 04. In one of our first days here, a Recruit who was in week 08 addressed us and said, “The days are long, but the weeks fly by.” We did not believe him at first, but now see that the wisdom of his words. Between the weather, our challenges, and the struggle not to laugh when a Company Commander makes a joke (do you know why they call it John Wayne toilet paper? Because it doesn’t take crap from nobody!) It seems mostly true, and none of us would change that for anything.

As today drew to a close, one of Delta’s own played TAPS for the regiment at 2200. As he stood in the distance, we all hung onto each note. Chief Brost told us a little of the history of TAPS and how it is standard to hear it played at funerals for service men and women, in addition to being played each night at the Training Center. Well, the sun is setting on our former lives. Now, it is peeking over the horizon of who we will be. Someone once said “Man cannot improve himself without suffering for he is both the sculptor and the stone.”

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.