Saturday, November 26, 2005

Christmas at the Citadel

Christmas décor is now going up everywhere. Unfortunately our compound isn’t exactly a neighborhood out of a Rockwell painting, so people have to improvise with where and how they hang their stuff. It reminds me a great deal of college. I went to The Citadel, a military college in South Carolina. Every holiday season we would hang decorations around each living section in the barracks (if you haven’t seen pictures, they are huge square sparse buildings that are open in the middle). Each company would be voted on as to the best décor. Again, it was pretty much up to the imagination of the cadets as to how to decorate and we usually got pretty creative. We’d have freshman cadets (we called them “knobs”) go room to room singing Christmas Carols, care packages would suddenly flood the mail room, and everyone was generally in a great mood for 5 weeks. When I think back to those times what I remember is more excitement of what the Christmas holiday would bring—a trip home to my parents and a break from the prison that we called school. I think that’s what generated the buzz. Short of when I was a kid, I have never been as filled with Christmas spirit as I was then. I think that’s kind of what may be happening here.

Christmas for us brings us within a month of going home. Given that I get to go home on the 15th of January, I have 50 days left as of today. When I showed up for my freshman year in August of 1990 I had 54 days until parent’s weekend, the first real happy time of those 9 months of hell. It seemed so long then, but doesn’t seem so long now. Especially seeing as I’ve already put in 80 days here so far.

The decorations on the CAOC Ops floor are particularly interesting because the lights are off here 24 hours a day (the picture is an unclass photo from AFLINK, with an arrow pointing to where I sit). The more that go up the cooler it looks since it is perpetually night in here. Just like at school, there really isn’t any rhyme or reason to it—everyone has decorated their own desk area in a different way. But it certainly brings spirits around here up a bit.

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad that you get to go home soon....