It’s 9pm on base, and they’ve just finished playing “Taps.” This is definitely one of my favorite things about living on base. I love hearing the National Anthem at 5pm. And “Taps” at 9pm is new, they don’t do that at our base. They have nice recordings (or they do it live, I don’t know) here. Much better than at our base. My husband will be impressed when he returns from field training, I think.

That’s right, we’re currently living on a different base, one in the Deep South, where my husband has a six-week training course. We came down here and barely got settled before he had to go off for field training for a week. So I’m living with Josie in a hotel room on base (while Beth is having a visit with my parents). It’s something of an adventure. I *have* to get the room cleaned and laundry done tomorrow. I hardly have room to walk, with stuff just dumped all over the place. But I was busy going to the commissary, the BX, the library, the family center, the playground, etc. Tomorrow I really need to work on the room, though, because the next day there are a bunch of spouse activities, and then the next day Seth comes back from his training and I want the place to look somewhat nice.

One thing I’m trying while he’s gone is coloring my hair. I’m starting to go gray (I know, and I’m not even 30 yet!) and feel sort of frumpy with it when I leave my hair down. “Down” for me is not entirely free, but pulled back with barrettes, because my hair is too thick and bushy to just leave entirely free. But the barrettes really make the gray even more obvious because there’s a lot of it at my temples. There are ponytails, of course, but still. Anyway, I’m dying it slightly red. “Auburn.” I think it’ll be a fun experiment. Hopefully it will turn out nicely and not clash with my bridesmaid dress for a wedding I’m in in 3 weeks! If I need to, though, I can always re-dye it back to its original color before the wedding. I think. I hope.

Josie is a bit grumpy in the hotel room. She misses her sister/playmate, I think, plus she has to get used to a new room and new stuff. Once I get things cleaned and organized tomorrow, she’ll have some more playspace on the floor, which should help. Maybe we’ll also have better weather so I can take her to the playground again.

In a way being here is like a mini-vacation. I can nap when Josie naps (usually Beth is up, so I can’t), and I don’t have the pressure of needing to clean the entire house. Josie also doesn’t make nearly as much mess of her toys as Beth does. I expect to be able to get some TV watched and some cross-stitch done while I’m here, maybe some knitting, so that will be fun. They also have lots of spouse activities planned that I hope to join in. I like a lot of the girls, although it seems like the ones from the previous group (the training sessions are staggered, so some of the spouses are halfway through, others are just starting) are a bit friendlier. Might just be that they’ve been here longer and are a bit more comfortable, though, so hopefully that will change. There aren’t a whole lot with kids, which might be because a lot of the men apparently just graduated from the academy. So lots of summer marriages and new military wives! There’s one other woman who has two kids close to Beth and Josie’s ages, though, and she’s been married the same length of time as well. Maybe we’ll hit it off.


2 thoughts on “Taps

  1. I have such a terrible time making friends. It’s completely my own fault. I’m socially awkward and shy, but extroverted at the same time. So my need for other people and companionship makes me even more socially awkward and shy. Ack! I need a sign to wear that says, “Once I’m not longer terrified of you, you’ll see just how cool I really am!” The people you meet there, will they be around when you go back home, or are they coming from all over the place?

    Reading things by people with two children really puts things in perspective for me. With just one kid, I have at least two (almost) guaranteed free hours a day. And I still somehow manage to complain about how overwhelmed I am. Lazy git.

  2. Yeah, I remember when I had one kid, thinking that people with two kids were just in this totally different place. Sort of the way I now look at people who have older, elementary-school-aged kids. Their kids can, like, tie their shoes and use cell phones. Totally different place.

    Best way to get two free hours a day? Institute “quiet time” once Grace stops napping. She has to stay in her room and play quietly. Kudos if you manage to lock the bathroom door, because it always seems like my worst quiet-time disasters are bathroom-related (IM me if you ever need to find out how to get diaper rash cream out of hair, carpet, etc., by the way).

    And as for friends, I’d totally be your friend! I love your writing style. It reminds me of me, just better-spoken. I think the way you do, I just don’t write it down nearly as coherently. But I think you’re totally cool, and if you lived, say, within 300 miles, I’d say we should meet up for a playdate. Alas, I don’t think your corner of the world is all that close to New England.

    The people I meet are from all over. It’s actually pretty cool walking around the parking lot: “Colorado, Texas, Florida, Alabama, Oklahoma, New Mexico, California, Utah, Arkansas, Missouri, Ohio, Illinois, New York…” There are a few people who are on bases together, mostly at this one base where a lot of pilots get trained. But nobody else from our base. Of course, it’s possible that we’ll meet up with some of these people again, get stationed at the same bases at some point in our future. They say that the military is a small world in a way. But so far I haven’t even met anybody else who is stationed in New England at all (not that many bases up here). Most of them are from the west, Utah and New Mexico and California. Wish I was this good at making friends at the base we’re actually living at! But then, there we aren’t living on base, and we don’t have the convenience of a nice small group of people to interact with daily and make friends with really fast…

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