On May 10, I participated in the 1-43 ADA Spouse Boot Camp. No, it’s not as tough as it sounds. After all, we did it in half a day.
See, Cavalry spouses get to do a simplified version of a Spur Ride. They spend a day doing obstacles and teamwork drills and earn their “pink spurs.” (This horrifies, me, BTW. I really don’t like pink.) Anywho, there isn’t anything like that for Air Defense spouses. So someone, somewhere, came up with a simple little Spouse Boot Camp. Of course, with my husband being the new Rear Detachment Commander, there was no way I could NOT do this, but I really would have done it either way. Let me brag a moment and mention that most of the spouses were from our FRG, including my co-leader and BFF Kristy.
It was held at the Air Assault Course, which just so happens to be a block or two from my house. I walked over. We got started about 9 am. First was the Repel Tower, which I had done a couple years ago with our previous unit. This time, the repel masters tied the rope seats for us, which is much faster than showing us how to do it.
I was towards the middle of the group to go down. Some of my fellow spouses were terrified and I spent some time trying to cheer them up. When it was my turn, I did notice it was much less frightening than that first time. You lean back, using the tension on the rope for support, with your feet against the ledge. Then you jump away from the wall. My jump wasn’t the greatest, but I did it, and descended quickly and easily. It was fun, and it’s all over so fast. (I don't have the pics, but they exist, so if I find them I might come back and update
They had 2 ropes set up, so J went at the same time as his First Sergeant. She was nervous, and he wanted to show off. He got about half way down, did some adjustments, and flipped upside down, finishing the descent head first. He’d done it before, and I was totally expecting it.
Next we did the easier half of the obstacle course. They also made some of the obstacles easier for us. For example, Soldiers had to go over the tall logs and under the low logs, but we went over the low ones and under the tall ones; Soldiers climb the chain ladder, go over the top beam, and down the other side, but we went up, smacked the top beam, and back down the same side. Also, if we didn’t think we could do it, we didn’t have to even try.
They started us in 2 lines. It ended up being spouses in one line and Soldiers in the other. I was first in the spouse line. The first obstacle was metal pipes that you run back and forth through. The repel master that was starting us had me start first, and I took off, but the Soldier still caught me at the end. Second obstacle was that chain ladder I mentioned.
|ready to start|
|the chain ladder|
Oh. My. God. That damn ladder was hard as hell and had me exhausted. I moved on to obstacle 3, which was 3 walls to get over. I planted my hands on the first wall, pushed up and got over, much like climbing out of a pool from the side (not the ladder or steps). I got a splinter. It was huge. I stepped to the side to yank it out, but it wouldn’t come out. Well crap!
I tried for a bit, then someone said Medic, and I walked over to where the medic was set up. Guess what? Can’t find their damn tweezers. So the medic puts on a rubber glove and is able to work the splinter out by hand. After a few minutes, that is. He cleans it, tapes on some gauze while telling me that it won’t stay on, and sends me on my way. By now, most everyone is a few obstacles ahead of where I jumped out.
I just went to where they were and got back in. The gauze stayed on for a few obstacles, and I skipped some because my hand was half covered in gauze and tape (meaning no grip on fat metal bars), and finished. I was still tired at the end. I still worked hard. And I still cheered on the other spouses.
|coming down a rope ladder|
We had lunch on site, then went our separate ways. I walked home and took a nice hot shower. It was a good time, but I would love the opportunity to go back at least attempt all the obstacles.
I would just like to mention here that I was able to type all of that BEFORE Duke realized the laptop was on my lap. He is now in his place, on my lap, between me and my laptop.