A few weeks back I received an email. The contents were cryptic, stating “Your orders have been sent to Battalion. Please book your flight as soon as possible.”
My response read, “Uh, am I going somewhere?”
After a few days, it was straightened out that I indeed was going somewhere, in fact to Romania for a two-week training stint attached to NATO.
Progress continued to fail to occur, as I requested a packing list and one could not be procured. I booked and rebooked flights three times as the dates, times, and requirements were ammended, each time with a suspense of right now. I asked what it was I was supposed to be doing at this exercise, and I would be presented with the operation order which only told me that I was on the list to go and that in all likelihood I did not need to pack a uniform. I figured I might be better off just packing a board to beat my head against.
As it turned out, it was a great time and a great experience. The training itself was productive though personally moderate, having to accomodate for people with limited english skills and people with limited investigative experience, but making up for it was the singing contests between drunk Brits and drunk Belgians, Canadians being reminded by Germans that you can sleep when you are dead, Bulgarians helping Norwegians onto the bus at 2:00 in the morning, and Estonians with a penchant for McDonalds. All of the teams in my little group successfully avoided being blown up or otherwise destroyed, we saved the world for this year, and I figure I now have a place to crash in a pinch in something like 26 nations.
And now it is time to give my liver a rest. After Oktoberfest, that is…