Foxtrot 198 Recruit Journal Week 04

International Maritime Signal Flag Foxtrot

Formed: December 3, 2019 Graduates: January 24, 2020

It was Christmas week, of course we’ll start with Christmas Day. Geez, stop yelling at me. I’ll paint the scene.

Christmas morning, 0517, I lie awake in bed, staring at the squad bay door. Most of us recruits typically wake up around 15 minutes before we’re supposed to, naturally. There’s something about the expectation of screeching whistles and immediate piercing fluorescent lights on the dot of 0530. But today…today was special. Today was Christmas morning. Now, as I lay in bed at 0517, I’m not saying I expected milk, cookies, and Christmas carols from our overly excited Company Commanders, but it would have been nice to have a little leniency.

A 0600 wakeup, perhaps. Or maybe, just maybe, a storming through our door by the Stormtrooper/ Company Commanders, a brief Merry Christmas and then whatever else. Nope! None of that on Christmas morning we were woken up to a shrill bark of fire, fire, fire. We then did fitness for the next 05 hours until we were adopted by our Christmas Coast Guard community families like lost puppies. On the bright side, getting woken up to fire, fire, fire (meaning we were about to get smoked) is kind of Christmas-y if you think about it.

The families who adopted us recruits for the day were all incredible and reminded us of the Christmas spirit. I remember telling the other recruits I’d never been so happy to see a lit Christmas tree.

It’s funny, at Cape May, personnel are not really allowed to say they want to see you do well, but little actions show it. For example, a Coast Guard Spouse’s association set up a little shindig for us Christmas Eve! They gave us stockings and letters. But when we first walked in, Captain Felger was there. For context, the only other experience we had with Captain Felger was Indoctrination Weekend were she gave a speech full of fire and steel.

But here Captain Felger was, Christmas Eve, handing out cookies and cocoa.

Besides that, we did firefighter training this week where we got completely dressed out in gear and entered a smoke filled simulator room to fight a fire. One of the funniest parts was probably after a 03 hour lecture our instructor summarized the entire lesson by saying, “so basically, fire bad” and dismissed the class. Finally, probably the oddest thing you’ll hear from a 21 year old is that on the beautiful southernmost tip of New Jersey called Cape May (I’m assuming it’s southernmost, I have not been able to fact check with Google Maps because we live in near pre-historic times here) we actually love classes.

There is nothing better than looking at the daily schedule and seeing “learn stuff” on it from 0800 to 1700. Why? Because we don’t get absolutely smoked every waking second. You’d think we wouldn’t get super excited for class, but trust me, when your alternatives are physical training or stare at a wall for 02 hours, you learn to get excited about military housing class real quick.

Until next week!

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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