What To Do

This is where I found myself, all alone on this deserted beach.  I put in an online application to join the military, thinking this was the right move for me, getting to travel and explore the world while serving my country.  They would pay for my college tuition and if I stayed long enough I could get retirement benefits.  The problem I had was I did not know which branch I should choose, should I go into the Reserve, the National Guard or sign up for active duty in the Army, Marine Corps, Navy Air Force or the Coast Guard.  I knew that I was in good physical condition, of appropriate weight and I should have no problem being able to pass a standard physical screening.  There were some things that I knew I didn’t want to do, like jumping out of a plane, so I would not become a paratrooper and I didn’t like being cooped up, so I was not going to be assigned to a submarine.

It is so peaceful here and I need this tranquility to collect my thoughts.  I want to get some vacation time and since the military will give me 30 days of paid vacation every year starting with my first year, this sounds great.  On the other hand, I am not happy about taking orders, I don’t want to have to salute anyone and I wouldn’t like to be assigned to latrine duty.  I don’t want to be screamed at for not making my bed, or not ironing my shirt properly.  I am still a young man and joining the military might cramp my sex life.  What if the recruiter is lying to me and the last thing that I want is to get shot in some God forsaken county like Afghanistan.  Maybe I should look into joining the Peace Corps?  I hope that this seashore with its clear, turquoise sea, bordered by small islands and a rocky headland will provide me with some clarity.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge Week 96 prompt – lost or found, for Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt – Clarity and for Rachel Poli I Read I Write I Create – Time To Write Creative Writing prompt – Application.

19 thoughts on “What To Do

  1. When I was in high school I was called constantly by a recruiter. I have the highest respect for the military but it was not for me…
    I finally had to tell him I would join if I could have long hair and get up late… he finally left me alone.

    It probably would have done me good.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I know…I think of that now believe me. I lived next to a Special Ops guy and he had everything paid for.
        Of course when I was 18 I thought of the worse things that could happen.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes. There is a scarcity of young men wanting to join the armed forces, despite mobile phones being allowed in the barracks. A senior officer once shared that bonding within the regiment has been adversely affected after phones were allowed, and he fears that it will affect the team spirit too.

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  3. I admire anyone that is or was in the armed forces. I have a friend that was in the army – wow, she is sincere as the day is long and tough as nails. The world needs more like her.

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  4. A person who enters the military is a different kind of soul. The ones I’ve met are sincere, honest, hard-working, loyal, and kind. But. It’s a hard life. I sat on a train once with an ‘army man’ who was on his way to be with his family. He’d been gone for six months. He talked about how much he loved his career, but how difficult it was for his family, and for him. Excellent setting to make this serious decision.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your story. I never had any desire to join the military. When I turned 18 I had to get a draft card and they had a lottery system to decide who would get drafted. I got a high number and I was happy that I was not going to be sent to Vietnam. The war was very unpopular at that time and everyone was happy when it ended.

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