Back from training

Posted on Updated on

I returned from TSIRT yesterday.

Each training day at Grafenwoehr involved several blocks of basic soldiering skills training. The days were long and broken only by short lunch breaks. We wore our ballistic armor and helmets the whole time unless we were in a classroom. We lived in ten man barracks rooms.

Many people talk about how soldiers must re-acclimate themselves to garrison or civilian life after returning from a deployment. We have to consider that the difficulties presented in “reintegration” are not entirely because of the stresses of actual bullet-flying combat. They also stem from the alien atmosphere. When deployed, Soldiers get no days off. Everyday is a day at the office. In some ways I think that this is a good thing. There’s not much to do on a FOB in Afghanistan besides work, though the internet and XBOX can help with boredom. So can a good book and PT. But generally, constant work can make the days go by much quicker. But I also think it can change a person. When someone works that much for that long, they become almost like a robot, and when they return, they may feel out of sorts.

Even after only a week in the field, when the training was constant and all I thought about was when the next formation was or how to properly perform a skill, I found that my return to garrison and to my apartment left me feeling as if I’d stepped onto alien soil. All the people buzzing around the base. You wonder what you’ve missed since you were gone. The smells, too. Grafenwoehr is basically a giant forest, so you smell nature the whole time you’re there. When I first walked into my apartment, I smelled–and still do right now–my wood floors. I can’t remember smelling them since I’ve moved in.


One thought on “Back from training

    Amos Volante said:
    March 28, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    I once smelled raspberry perfume during a 2 month field exercise. It turned out it was a woman who was almost a mile away.

    FTX or deployment definitely readjusts the brain:

    And makes us aware of the tremenous amount of work we are capable of when removed from the distractions of everyday life.

    It also can make one wonder why we distract ourselves to such a degree when being focused produces so much.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s