<<<previous" <<<before

August 2, 1997

Remember a few messages ago I said,"Guess what?"? Here's your answer:
In May 1997, I volunteered for a weaponeering school in San Angelo, Texas, to learn to put bombs on targets. Did I mention I was in the military?
It was an excellent course, but I told my boss (and his boss) that the ONLY request I had was that they not, under any circumstances, put me in the August class. Miimii had vacation time then and we desperately needed a good vacation together because our marriage was crumbling. It had been years since we had quality vacation time together. So I enrolled in the September class.

On June 12, I received my assignment to Korea as stated, with a report date no later than November 4th. But my class in Texas was to graduate on October 24th. So, being a good Sergeant, I asked,"Do you expecting me to drive 1600 miles back from Texas, unpack, then completely pack, outprocess, take care of personal affairs, not to mention say goodbye to my wife and cats, get on a plane and fly to Korea in less than ten days?" They couldn't give me a specific port-of-call date and I may have had less than a week after my return from Texas. So I smartly withdrew from the September class and my unit filled it with another troop.

While in Roanoke racing, the personnel office discovered a code in my assignment that required me to have the Texas class before I went

Hopeless in Hope

Look Ma...My head is almost as big as Bill Clinton's birthplace!>>>

to Korea. It was REQUIRED. Someone in headquarters Air Force must have seen I was taking the weaponeering class and said,"Hey, this guy will be weaponeer qualified, let's send him to Korea!" When I went to my initial outprocessing appointment in July, no one mentioned that IMPORTANT fact to me. So I unknowingly withdrew from the September class.

So my unit stuck me right into the August class. I was furious--it's the angriest I'd ever been at any boss at any point in my career. I was fuming. My marriage was dying, and they took our last thread to mend it and once again, my attempt to help my unit ended up screwing me. Miimii spent her vacation at home sitting alone with me in Texas. In retrospect, it may have just delayed the inevitable. When I finally arrived at Korea, I didn't even work for the office that required that skill. It was all for nothing. I felt so bad for Miimii, I traded in my baby, my Red Honda Civic Si (Simon) for an Acura Integra GSR and gave it to her. I remember the phone call,"I have some bad news--I have to be in Texas by August" ***long silence***"Hey, do you want to buy an Acura Integra?", cheerful reply,"Okay!" I was starting to get the hang of this marriage thing, and it was a sweet car.

On the bright side, I drove through Hope, Arkansas, birthplace of Bill Clinton, on the way down to San Angelo. Now I know why Bill left to become president. No sooner did I get into Hope, I was fighting to get the heck out of there. It seemed like a depressing pit, and one train shut down the main artery of the town for nearly half an hour. I intentionally took my shoes off for this picture, and put a weed in my teeth. I used to tell Miimii, that with Clinton being president, and the vacancy in Arkansas, she could easily be elected governor because she could read 'n write. I told her she could promise them shoes (I even wrote a speech for her). When I arrived in Texas I said,"Guess where I went? Bill Clinton's birthplace!" Unaware of the photo I took, Miimii giggled and asked,"Were they wearing shoes?"

Hopefully leaving Hope>>>