Small Comfort

VINCE

My squad mates made it official.  I will be the caller for the graduation march on September 8.  It’s a good feeling.  I’ve been working hard in many areas including marching in our squad formation.  It’s tough to get 17 men to turn at the same time on the correct foot, while singing our cadence.  But I know I’ll do well.

Yesterday I worked K.P. (kitchen duty) for only the third time since my arrival.  I didn’t go as much as most people because I’ve had a job that interfered with the scheduling…blah, blah.

I actually enjoyed it.  I worked about 14 hours in the back of the kitchen.  They were excited to have somebody that knew what he was doing.  I got to use the big Hobart slicer and was happy to discover that I still had good form.  And, I did not cut any fingers off.

This morning after our run we came back inside our barracks to discover that it had been “inspected.”  It happens about once a week.  If anything is wrong, they take the drawer out and empty it out on the bed.  In my case, I didn’t roll one of my underpants correctly so I had to re-fold my shirts, socks, sweats, and undies.  I’m usually one of the few that doesn’t get flipped but I knew I had been slacking for a few days.  It was just a little friendly reminder.

Flag detail is going well.  I’ve been on it three times and we haven’t dropped it.  I was the safety today.  My arms stay under the flag while it’s being folded.  It’s pretty cool.  I always wondered how the flag was put into such a nice triangle.  Now I know.

I’m I study hall right now.  Every Mon, Wed, and Fri we get an hour at night where everybody is quiet.  So quiet.  I can’t wait until I’m able to just go find a quiet place—and read, write, or do nothing at all.  I can’t wait to sit in a comfy chair and kick my legs up.  We have to sit straight up with the entirely of the bottom of our boots flat on the ground.  All day.  Every day.  Well, I mean when we’re sitting.

[ANNE: I received a postcard from Vince informing me that my last three letters to him had been destroyed.  There was an explanation given for only one: it had contained an image of a website.  All I could think of was that he had been urged to ask me for a list of AA meetings in our neighborhood, and I had copied a list off of the AA website, printed it, and mailed it to him.  I checked the Department of Corrections website and it said nothing about images of websites not being allowed in letters.

Man, was I upset!  Especially since I have an upcoming visit with Vince–the first in eight months.  Did they know about the blog, and were they pissed off about it?  Did they just not like the content of my letters for some reason?  Or was it totally capricious?  Would they find some reason to deny me a visit, after I drove for two hours to get there?  Would I be able to keep my mouth shut if they did?  I don’t have answers to any of these questions.  All I can do is try my best to suck it up if the guards give me any grief.  Trouble is, I am really bad at kowtowing to authority.]

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