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cadet blogs

Only the Beginning of My Fantastic Journey

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Sakowicz Photo This summer has been the most exciting and greatest fun I ever had! Finally earning my red shields and being allowed to call myself a third class was only the beginning of my fantastic journey!

 

My summer started the day after my last final where I met the CGC Eagle on the New London docks. Nothing compares to the feeling of knowing you will spend the next five weeks learning to operate a square rig sailing vessel. Over the next five weeks I learned the 200+ pins and lines, I sat on the bowsprit at 0200 watching dolphins swim through the bioluminescence and climbed to the royals in rough seas! I learned how to navigate by the stars, turn on the main diesel engine and make baggy wrinkle. What I learned on board was amazing and the people I worked with were even better! What really made my trip was the port calls; three days in Puerto Rico, Aruba, Cozumel Mexico and a day in Miami! The new places and cultures was an eventful break from the hard work on Eagle. I really liked my time on board and hope the future sailors have as great a time as I did!

 

My second phase was six weeks on the CGC Dauntless. The cutter'a home port is Gaveston, Texas but it was dry docked in Brooklyn for the six weeks I was on. This wasn't a tragedy for me I live only an hour away so I was able to visit my family and friends on my off days. The Dauntless was so much different that the Eagle in more ways than just sails. The dynamic of the crew and the flow of work was very smooth and everyone got their work done swiftly and efficiently. The crew took us in and put us to work and I was able to experience what it was like to be a functioning member of the Coast Guard. I made a lot of good friends on both my phases and I was able get so much out of all of these experiences; I couldn't have asked for a better summer. now it is time to take my leave before returning to the Academy for my second year. Thank you for reading!

 

More about Emily.

 

Week 10: Guam Adventures!

(Just for Fun, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Sherman Photo I think this week’s reflection is going to be short. There really wasn’t work for the crew this week, so most of my days were free aside from the one day of duty in which I broke-in as an officer of the day (OOD). I’ve been working on many small projects, which are enjoyable. It’s rewarding because I know that I’m contributing to the cutter and doing something that will last and be beneficial for the crew and officers (or at least I hope!). As I mentioned last week, I enjoy projects that make things better for those around me; this week has been great for that!

 

When I wasn’t working this week, I was exploring the island. There are some exciting hikes and interesting places to go. I’ve taken a lot of pictures of the cool landscapes, amazing views, tropical beaches, and ocean cliffs as well as some interesting wildlife (have I mentioned the dive-bombing birds yet?).

 

It’s been a relaxing week, and I still haven’t come to terms with the fact that I only have one week left onboard. Where has the time gone!? I’m looking forward to going home, but part of me doesn’t want to leave. I still have more of Guam to explore. Thankfully I have another week left to have a few more days of adventure.

 

As far as leadership and Coast Guard reflections, I can’t say that I have much to say for this week. I’ve been thinking about school a bit more (mentally preparing myself for it), and the Academy seems like such a different place from this side of the world. Honestly, the perspective has been just what I needed to refresh and ramp up for my last year! It has been incredible being in the operational Coast Guard doing work and standing watches as a professional member of the service. I hope when I face challenges at the Academy that I can remember my perspective now to remind myself that the Academy and all the craziness that goes on there isn’t the whole Coast Guard. I’m proud to serve in one of the world’s premier maritime services!

 

Well, I’ll leave off there. Not sure if I’ll write next week since I’ll be flying home about the time I usually write these reflections (and 10 reflections is a nice even number…). I can tell you now that it’s going to be a busy week as I scramble to finish all my projects, tie up other loose ends, and prepare to head home. Thanks for joining me on my Pacific journey this summer. In a few weeks, be on the lookout for a vlog with pictures and video from these past few months. Have a great rest of the summer!

 

More about Justin.