Long Days and Short Nights

Where did the time go? We have eighteen days and a wakeup until Christmas and I haven’t posted since a couple of days before Thanksgiving! I know it is almost cliché to say that I have been busy but truth be told I have been extremely busy. I am happy to report that on Thanksgiving Day my family in Seattle, WA saw the holiday greeting the Public Affairs people recorded. I am hoping that KRCG or KOMU broadcasts the greeting I made for my family and friends in Jefferson City.

In a previous post I mentioned that I have assumed an extra duty as the Field Ordering Officer (FOO). What a monster that turned into. We are consolidating operations with a Forward Operating Base (FOB) nearby and I am in charge of putting together the Scope of Work (SOW) for some of the contracts we need to keep both the FOB and PRT running. When I was a commander I didn’t worry about that stuff because I had full time staff that handled the money.

Some of our key personnel are either on leave or somewhere else for meetings. Guess who filled the gap? Yours truly! On top of my primary duty, I am acting for two other personnel and I was practically run ragged today after having a late night due to a night mission. Today was a perfect storm for crap that came down all at once. I was woefully unprepared for today’s staff call due to running down too many things at one time plus not being totally familiar where certain key files were stored. Luckily for me, I wasn’t the only one not prepared so we pushed back the staff call. The Executive Officer (XO) and I searched for the files I needed and when we reconvened we all looked like we knew what we were doing instead of acting like a bunch of keystone cops!

My misery is temporary. Some of the things I have been doing I had to let slip because there isn’t enough time in the day. The key personnel will be returning soon and I can concentrate on my primary assignment and managing base operation contracts.

In all the madness I did manage to take care of……Christmas shopping! Via e-mail I was able to coordinate presents for my sons and niece and nephew between my bride, my sister in law, and my mother in law. As much as I like to support my favorite stores in Jefferson City (Downtown Book and Toy for example) the Internet made my life easier.

The nights here are getting ugly cold. We have some of our guys at a FOB east of here looking at a project and it is in the mountains. They are practically freezing their tails off. When we look eastward we can see the snow pack developing on the mountaintops. One of the Special Forces guys I was chatting with says we will be hit with snow in about a couple of weeks. It looks like we will have a white Christmas here.

Time escapes you here. The missions, paperwork, e-mails, phone calls, and meetings all blend in together and then you realize that it is late and you can’t see your hand in front of your face when you step outside of the Tactical Operations Center (TOC). If it isn’t too late, go to the gym for about an hour, shower, and hit the rack. Then do it all over again the next day. Even though the days are short and the nights are long, I personally have very long days and very short nights.

CPT NightHawk


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