Sunday, March 27, 2011

Firin' Up the Coals

Josh by currtdawg
Josh, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

This is our last weekend together as a class before graduation, so we decided to get together for a little cook-out today. The weather has been gorgeous, and as luck would have it, as soon as we lit the grill, it started raining.

Fern, Derrick, & Ryan by currtdawg
Fern, Derrick, & Ryan, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

Still, we made the best of it and ate tons of food and drank even more beer...which gave way to whiskey...which gave way to childish antics which will never be spoken of in a public forum.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Overeaters Anonymous

Jason & Rob by currtdawg
Jason & Rob, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

Last night, a bunch of classmates and I went to a popular restaurant known as "Big Emma's." I'd heard stories about it before, but was totally unprepared for the amount of food I was given. You know the expression, "I barely made a dent in it?" Well, that was truly the case with the mound of kasespatzle that was laid before me.

Josh and Big Emma by currtdawg
Josh and Big Emma, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

I was the DD, so I was limited to only one beer, which left more room for the kasespatzle. I think I'm still running it off.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Restoration Hardware

Rob by currtdawg
Rob, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

For our class project, we went up to Belgium yesterday to help restore an old WWII fort called Neufchateau. It was a really interesting place with tons of stories.

Neufchateau Fort by currtdawg
Neufchateau Fort, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

There were two miles of tunnels beneath the fort, some as far underground as 35 meters. Our part consisted mainly of moving a bunch of heavy stuff from one area to another, but it was still fun, mostly because the guy running the program kept giving us beer.

Ike & Sarah by currtdawg
Ike & Sarah, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

Unfortunately, Sarah was talking and thinking too much, so Ike had to put her in her place.

Neufchateau Fort by currtdawg
Neufchateau Fort, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

It was a great day, and I thought Belgium was a beautiful country. Thanks to Sarah for organising the whole thing.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Testing My Patience

Things are moving along nicely here, and there's less than two weeks left in the course. The last few days are going to be particularly brutal, since that's when the bulk of all the tests are administered. Our class has really pulled together, though, and we're genuinely looking out for each other, making sure everyone understands the material and no one gets left behind. I'm lucky to be in a class of people who take this stuff seriously, but not TOO seriously.
Regardless, when all this is over, I'll definitely be ready to get back to Italy. I miss the weather, the food, the wine, and just the general temperament of that country. And the feeling when I finally slide back into my own bed will be heavenly.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

What the What?

Rob by currtdawg
Rob, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

People may think the NCO Academy is all work and no play, but this is the kind of shenanigans we engage in on a daily basis.

Josh by currtdawg
Josh, a photo by currtdawg on Flickr.

I don't really want to go into what this project was, but rest assured, there's a reason we look like thieves. Thieves of AWESOME!

Saturday, March 12, 2011


After seeing all the footage of yesterday's earthquake and tsunami, I couldn't help but think of all the great times I had in Japan. I'll always have a place in my heart for the Japanese people, and I have no doubt, even as the death toll rises, they'll pull together and make it through this tragedy. My prayers go out to their entire nation.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Gettin Edumacated

I won't lie. Class is rough. We're only in the physical classroom from 7 AM to 3:15 PM on weekdays, but evenings and weekends consist of lots of reading and preparing for the next lesson. Our instructor, TSgt Hall, has a way of making even the most boring lessons entertaining. Class discussions, though sometimes veering off-track, are always lively and often humorous.
The next two weeks are going to be particularly difficult with three major tests, a speech, and a case study. But I know there are less competent people than me that have made it through this course, and I have faith I'll make it through.