So, there are these things called Leadership Labs, in which all those enrolled with the Army ROTC goes to Slate Canyon:
So, that's roughly the terrain of Slate Canyon, only right now it's snowy and the part we're at sits at the base of one of the huge mountains and we're scaling the side of said mountain every week. We go in our ACU's (as seen in the previous post), Load-Bearing Equipment (LBE's), Rucksack (ruck), Air-soft gun in the model of an M4, mask to protect face from air-soft gun, and knee/elbow pads to protect the ACU's and your joints, as you're on the ground a lot, pointing the M4 at trees and bushes. Anyways, it's fun, for the most part, except for the time I was asked to scale a hill about 30 ft. from "ground" level in about 1 minute flat. Thankfully I was without a ruck. Here's a picture of me in full gear:
Funsies! It's roughly 30ish lbs of weight with both the LBE's (suspender-like things) and the Ruck. So running around in the snowy rock-strewn terrain is both dangerous and stupid. But that's what we do on a weekly basis. We go up to the canyon, grab loaded weapons and play army for the next 3 hours. I LOVE my squad. It's made up of primarily men and they're all just really fun. They've made me feel comfortable, though not without their fair-share of teasing (I am a girl, so it's bound to happen). I already have a few people I'm more friendly with than others, but that's because they're the ones who work with me most. Anyways, I have my moments of panicking where I wonder why in the world I'm doing this. But then I go to lab or PT and hang out with the boys and I feel like I'm right where I'm supposed to be. I try and imagine the snowy landscape as desert and try to visualize myself in Iraq or the Middle-East in 4 years and try to see if I would feel differently. Personally, I think the mountains are a bit more tough to navigate safely, so if anything I am being over-prepared for Active Duty. I just hope that I figure things out 100% before I commit myself and there's no way out.
So, my birthday. I had a modest celebration on Sunday the 17th, the day of my birth and had a few friends over: Mariah, Leigh, Lance, Rufus, Matt (Lance and Rufus's new roomie), Justyna and Julia (my roommates), and Donnie. Justyna made me a cake, and I made my birthday dinner: cheese chicken enchiladas and spanish rice. Lance provided chip dip, Rufus brought brownies, and Mariah and Leigh brought blueberry muffins they claimed tasted like cornbread. Julia made delicious banana chocolate chip bread that was divine (mainly for the chocolate). I got "Best of Will Ferrell" SNL DVDs (BOTH) from Lance and Rufus and so we spent most of the night watching that. And then we played games. It was fun:
Blowing out the candles. I did a "Puh" kind of blow since I was just trying to irritate everyone. Came to bite me in the butt in the form of a horrible picture.
Two of my favorite people: Lance and Mariah, who kidnapped my camera at some point and decided to take silly pictures.
Anyways, that's enough pictures for now. I can't seem to get them to move to where I want them to go. FRUSTRATING. But I had tons more I wanted to share.
Last, but not least, I saw "Avatar" on MLK after spending the morning/afternoon with Jamilyn, my cousin who used to live in Arizona but recently moved to Pleasant Grove, UT (20 minutes away from Provo). She treated me to breakfast and lunch and I spent a nice time in the company of her and her charming almost-3-year-old, Kason. "Avatar" lived up to my expectations and even exceeded them in some areas. I loved it, hate to admit it. James Cameron, you're not the king of the world, but you're certainly king of Pandora. But that doesn't count, since it's fictional. So HA!
Anyways, that's it. I wanted to get more in depth, but I have a fair bit of homework still and I also have PT in the morning, bright and early (6 am). It's a Company Ability Run. Fun.
P.S. Got a new phone. Lovely, isn't it?