Juliet 198 Recruit Journal Week 04

International Maritime Signal Flag

Formed: January 14, 2020
Graduates: March 06, 2020

As the last few recruits of Juliet-198 finally put their head to a pillow and rest, so closes the loud, sweaty saga that was week 04 of Coast Guard Basic Training.

While seven days in the normal world may seem like a blur, it is not the case for anyone inside Cape May. Each individual day, hour, minute, and second is so jam-packed with learning, training and pain that holding a five pound rubber non gun feels like an eternity. Although, learning, training, and being in pain is what happens every week, so what made week 04 any different? For starters, recruit training is really beginning to pick up in all aspects.

Recruits now have the duties of marching ourselves around the base in addition to trying not to be late for those very same formations. The punishments are severe, and the standards are strict. A mistimed shrug or sign may send you to a bulkhead sitting in an invisible chair, or worse. Not to say that the punishments are unfair, but recruits have been here for four weeks and a Company Commander’s patience is finite.

Even the classes have gotten relatively more extreme, as recruits move from pen and paper to proper government computers and into much more “involved” form of firefighting training. As on Thursday Recruits threw on flame retardant suits, heavy helmets and many recruits took their first breaths from a bottle of air instead of the atmosphere around them. It didn’t even stop there! Slogging their way into a room lit only by simulated fires and made to fight them. An exciting time for sure but pride without temperament is foolish, and boy, they will not let us forget that!

The company guidon for Juliet-198, a flag that we march around with to let people know who we are is typically the “pride” of the company has been flipped upside down to remind us and others that Juliet was in distress. The upside down J earned us the nickname “candy cane company.”

So Juliet remains humbled for another week. Of course the standards are high, and more shipmates will leave the company for not meeting them, but those who remain stand as recruits bettered by that hardship. An important note to consider when constant pushups gets tiring. Fortunately for those who do not like pushups, the staff at Training Center Cape May have interesting ways to up the ante and keep things fresh. After all, recruit training does not get any easier, the recruits get better. Hopefully there is some truth to that saying, but there is only one way to find out. Be here.

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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