Thursday, October 29, 2009

Crucible Journal (part 3)

The following is a portion of a journal a recruit kept while at bootcamp on Parris Island as he embarked on the Crucible and became a United States Marine.

THURSDAY - Parris Island Boot Camp - CRUCIBLE continued

Dear Journal, Let's see. I think left off with Pugil Sticks. Each recruit had to compete in 3 consecutive matches. Each round was quick and vicious. We already had 3 matches in Phase II, so we were all talking trash and comparing scores and saying things like…"Dude, I'm 3-0 for Crucible and 6-0 overall!"

After Pugil Sticks we humped back out to where we started this morning. We completed 4 more obstacles: The "Stairway to Heaven" which is a ladder 50' high with rungs 4-5 feet apart! We had to lug 2 ammo cans over it. The "Skyscraper" which is way bigger than the one at Base. The obstacle, there was a wounded Marine at the top of a tower. We had to retrieve him as a team. I guess it started to sink in that…you know that could be me! Do I really want to do this? But as I looked around and followed my team up that tower, I thought, all these guys would do this for me in a heartbeat. I realized that there was probably NOTHING I wouldn't do for them. It kind of energized me.

The "Weaver" was next. This was kind of challenging. We had to climb over logs with ammo and water cans. I am so tired. I have no idea what time it is. And finally we went to the Rope Bridge. Sounds easy…maybe even fun huh? Yea RIGHT! For each of these obstacles we were required to also carry heavy objects… through them, up them, under them or over them… like ammo cans and water jugs all filled with concrete to make them heavier!

Oh, I forgot to mention this important fact, each obstacle station is named for a Marine Hero. At each station, our Crucible Leader made a Recruit read a brief explanation of how the Hero's actions exemplify the Corps and its values. It was my favorite part. The DI's also choose a different leader for each obstacle. That way, we all got to understand what it's like to be a leader, and what your responsibilities are as a follower.I am getting very hungry now.

More later…"

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