01 July 2011

“Beast” Day 5 – West Point

It's already!
We met w/ the civilian and installation chaplain - Chaplain Wood. He has been here 19 years! I should clarify (if I haven't already) that "The Beast" is officially known as CBT (Cadet Basic Training). So if you see that acronym, you know what it means :) Another point to make is that the TAC (leadership) switches out about halfway though. The Second Detail will arrive in just a couple weeks. This second half of beast is usually focused more on land-nav, leadership courses, and spending more time living in the field while training (from what I understand). It will be interesting to see how the transition goes. I guess it sounds like there are about 250 cadre members, split into 8 companies, with about 150 cadets to each company. If I did my math right, that's about 1 Cadre per 5 New Cadets (but probably more like 1 Cadre per 8-10 NCs based on structure).
Our job as CCs is to be "married" to our company - to be the shoulder on which to cry, and to lend an ear to the weary at heart. So far, it has become a pretty good routine to do early PT with our guys, to pop in and our throughout the afternoon, and then to spend time with them in the evening at their barracks.

Camp Bucknor is not far from West Point, and is the training that first-year cadets (known as Yearlings) for about 4 weeks. There is also an Air Assault school that lasts about 10-12 days as well. So we have our work cut out for us!
Apparently, a "Firsty" (4th-year cadet) will be shadowing some of us at times to see how we function.

Let's see - what else...
Chaplain Davis is another supervisory chaplain! He has a promotion ceremony coming up (to Major). Great guy, very avid sports player (AVID!), and conducts chapel on post as well.

We were given a book called "Engage Your Strengths" by Gallop and the American Bible Society - similar to a Meir-Briggs test I suppose. I'm curious to see what I'll learn about myself through this. After completing it, I'll meet w/ Chaplain Berghaus to discuss the results.

I have learned the importance of meeting and staying in touch with the cadet counselor. Mine is great - she's a great listener, and fills me in with anything I should know (out-processing cadets to talk to, injured cadets, etc.). Great teamwork.

Oh I almost forgot! All week I've been trying to get my ASU's tailored here on post. The tailor has either been away, at home, or on break, and I kept missing him. I need everything ready to go for church, so I was told to come in anytime today to have it taken care of. FINALLY, I was able to get marked up! I have to come back tomorrow after 4pm to pick it up. Wow - almost 100 bucks to tailor this thing! :(

We went to Trophy Point today to prepare for chapel on Sunday. Trophy Point is outdoors, and one of the most beautiful locations at WP (see pics below)! I hope the weather stays like it is for Sunday!
For lunch, we all went out as a group off-post to a Mexican joint - excellent food! Highly recommended!

This afternoon we FINALLY finished our in-processing - this time with the finance guy! He was great! Very personable, and took good care of us. I also dropped off my car today to get a check-up (since everything on post is so cheap)!

We spent the evening in the barracks again, getting to know our TAC and NCs on a more personal level. A day well spent.

Sorry for the ramblings today! My mind has been all over the place as I process a lot of info.

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