Friday, June 6, 2008

History, Smiles and loss

June 6th. For most people just another day. Even many in the Army are not fully aware of the full implication of this day. But in the US Army there are few days that are as steeped in sacrafice, and valor. Aside from the Airborne drop, which was scattered all to hell, there were the assault on Point du Hauc (the last time 1st ID was remembered for greatness) ther was the Brittish, and Canadian Landings on Juno, Gold and Sword beaches, then there was the American landing on Omaha. By far the worst of all the landings, it was an absolute slaughter, 400 yards of open beach with murderous MG fire, Mortars, and artillery. It is said that the sluaghter was so great that the tide was turned red, and the waiting ships off shore were ordered to lower their flags to half staff.

"Above and Beyond the call of duty" seems to apply to just about everyone that assaulted Normandy on that day. Be it the Airborne, the Brittish, Canadians or the French Commandos. The French resistance conducting sabotauge, there are stories a plenty of valor, heroism, and sacrafice. Compared to my own meager efforts, I doubt that I will ever measure up to these men who bravely marched off into history. I can not imagine the sheer force of will it would have taken to fight that day, and frankly I don't want to. Today they have SAPI plates which doubtless would have save hundreds if not thousands of lives that day. They have advanced medicine that makes the standard of the day pale in comparison. Even the weaponry of today, far more leathal, ironically, makes a slaughter like Omaha beach far less likely.

Till this country fades to dust there will always be a specal place of reverance for those brave men. I only find it sad that people do not know what this day means. That the sheer horror of this day is not drilled into every school child is such that i find incomprehensible. Perhaps that is why our skin is not as thick, and why we are so worried about what the world thinks. People have short memories, but this soldier will remember always!

It was also Organization Day for IACH (Irwin Army Comunity Hospital). The easiest way to explain it is "mandatory fun day". More often than not it is very manditory that you attend. Often times it is on a saturday, and you get to thinking "why did I have to give up my free time?" It's mostly geared towards families, and toward that end, single soldiers don't often like it. Lets face it you hang around these ugly mugs all day every day, unless you intentionally socalize with them you really don't give two shits and a handshake what their kids look like, or how fat their wives got after popping out the third fourth or fifth kid.

However, sometimes its *somewhat* fun. Today I enjoyed it *somewhat*. For the most part I was bouncing around trying to take pictures somewhere even close to Nicole's Of course that wasn't going to happen with my puny little L73. Its bad when you have camera envy. Be that as it may it wasn't all bad. I did manage to get some good pictures.

Aside from that I also enjoyed the whole dunking of the CSM in the dunktank. It took only one throw and in he went. After that there was the pie in the face. I stayed just long enough to see COL Merit get a nice big pie in the face. But can you blame me? It's all in good fun but somehow this is like the cosmic scales balancing out. That's why I love it so much.

Finally Erika. Well I baisically said "make a choice". What I ment was that I was tired of the whole "just friends" routine. I wanted her to make a choice and stick by it. She chose to wait. She wanted me to wait two years for her to finish school, and then she'd try dating me. Well guess what, not going to happen. If my happy ass doesn't get deployed right away, then I'll probably be getting the hell out of Kansas.

I wanted to make it very clear to her that if she wanted to take a break from dating period, good for her, but I'm not waiting around for her to make up her mind. I'm not really in the mood for that kind of crap. I went through enough wanting and waiting for Lisa, then Erika, Andrea and back to Erika again. Part of the problem is trust. She cut and run when the going got tough. In a way that's just what she did today. Like I said before, she made her choice and she's going to have to live with that.

Today was a strangly eventful day. Aside from a slight nightmare last night, when I woke up this morning I had no idea it would have been this eventful.

1 comment:

M said...

I lived near Juno and Obama Beach in France for 4 years (boarding school). It's a small stretch now, but I imagine it was huge back then. Along the shoreline there are hundreds of beach houses built there and the French consider it any other beach even though there is memorials surrounding it. (North Americans are more WWII conscious then the Europeans, I think the society wants to almost forget.) It does get nice and sunny on occasion, but for the most part, it's gloomy british weather and there's always this eery feeling to it. For those that know what happened on those beaches, it's hard to walk on without thinking about it and experiencing a small wake up call.

Driving up to the beaches is one of the most patriotic moments I felt. It's a long stretch of flat countryside for hours and hours. Then out of no where in the plains, the first thing you see, is the biggest Canadian Flag flying high that I have EVER seen. Then a few moments later you spot the HUGE memorial monument with a perfectly white path leading up to it. Just knowing that THIS is where Canadians (and Americans, British) fought to free, seriously makes you proud. The cemetary will make you tear jerk because that's when you can see history, you see the thousands and thousands of white crosses representing soldiers, most of them barely 18 years old.

Let me know if you ever want to visit those beaches. I really think it's an experience you would like.