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Patricia's Other Life, A Q&A Session

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Thursday, January 3, 2008

Patricia's Other Life, A Q&A Session

The crisis seems to be averted for now.

"Which crisis? A sick son or a sick computer?"

Oh yeah -- both! Jake had a late lunch which seemed to have the same effect as watering a wilted houseplant. He perked right up and enjoyed an afternoon playdate and then even went to his soccer game tonight!

The computer is also back in action, in a rather abbreviated form. I've yet to install those little nice-to-have things like Google Earth and Adobe Acrobat Reader, those will come along whenever-the-heck. The anti-virus software is back and is working fine, and actually everything is running much "fresher" than before. Nice!

So this weekend I drill.


"You what?"

I drill.

"What are you drilling for? North Carolina doesn't have an oil reserve, does it?"

Well...since you mentioned reserve...


I am a Major in the Air Force Reserves. It's a great way to serve. Catchy recruiting jingle, isn't it?

"I think that silly blog title is finally starting to make sense..."
I'm a meteorologist...

"OH! That explains the uber-nerdy Weather Underground ActiveX control in the upper right of your blog!"

ahem...I'm a meteorologist for a unit at Shaw AFB, near Sumter, SC. Once a month I get in our Prius and make the trek 3 hours south, through the Carolina Sandhills, for 2 1/2 days of adult interaction. Those 2 to 2 1/2 days per month constitute a drill weekend or, if you want to be Air Force Reserve-y, it's technically a Unit Training Assembly (UTA).

"Wow, you commute 3 hours each way to work?"

Well, for one weekend a month it isn't bad. The paycheck I get for that one weekend per month, plus the fact that I can make the entire trip on about 3/4 of a tank of gas when it's a Prius makes it not-so-expensive. As for the travel time, I happen to enjoy driving so it's quite peaceful for me to enjoy a drive listening to the music I want. Or NPR.

"How long have you had this other life?"

Well, before the kids came along, it was my ONLY life. I went straight into the Air Force after college in summer 1995, and remained on active duty until January 2005. The day my youngest son, Timmy, was born was my last real day of work. I rode out my maternity leave and vacation days until I started a reserve job in April 2005.

So, the answer is that this May, I'll have had this "other" life for 13 years. I love the Air Force and I'll tell anyone who asks that the decision to leave active duty was the most difficult in my entire life.

"I was just about to ask about that..."
But the Reserves is awesome and is one of America's best kept secrets -- it's a wonderful part time job (read: vacation money) and it's a great way for me to keep current in my field, which is always evolving. If you've ever thought about how you might like to further serve your country, being able to fit in one weekend per month and two weeks per year to help protect your neighbors is a great way!

"But I see on the news about all those Reservists and National Guardsmen having to serve 12-15 months in Iraq..."

Okay, that's for another discussion. In my field (weather)...in my service (Air Force)...as it stands right now (things always change), Reservists couldn't spend 12 months over there if they wanted to...and I know folks who want to!
Anyway, this weekend I drill. The family is coming with me this weekend to get to see the base and do some shopping at the Commissary, BX and Military Clothing Sales Store (i.e., uniform shopping). Dave is still active duty, and being stationed at NC State means our trips to military communities are not too often.

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1 Comments:

At Thursday, January 3, 2008 at 10:29:00 PM CST , Blogger Don Miller said...

Major Mom,
Thanks for sharing you 'Other Life'. And especially for serving our country and for the pride you have for the Air Force.

FotoMom had told me you were an Air Force Meteorologist, but she didn't tell me you drove a Prius! You might not have noticed that one of my interests is EVs (electric vechiles). I talked my self out of converting my Sicon xB to an battery powered electric car. You might have notice a couple Blogs I read are electric car conversions...

A Weather person, Electric cars and a laptop in the kitchen. Dave's a lucky guy!

Don

 

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