Well, the clock is ticking, there are only four and a half weeks left in fourth class year. Many things have occurred this past year, and I definitely feel like I have grown as a person. I have been pushed mentally, emotionally, and physically during this year, so it is safe to say that I am ready to move on toward becoming a third class next year.
Recently, we received our assignments for the summer, so this has been what I have been leaning on this semester when life seems to get tough. During the first five weeks of my summer, I actually have the opportunity to sail around the Caribbean, taking port calls in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Aruba, and Miami! Since I have lived in the South my entire life before coming to the Academy, I have never been a fan of cold weather so this year has been a huge adjustment. But thankfully, I don't travel north of my home state of Georgia for the whole summer! This means two things: warm weather as well as being close to my friends and family back down South. As if my summer could not get any more exciting, I also get the privilege to work at a Coast Guard unit in Alabama for six weeks. During my time there, I will be working in the operational Coast Guard. I will be traveling there with one of my classmates who I just recently met, so it should be an adventure to say the least. Word on the street is that this particular unit is very busy the majority of the time, so it really gets my blood pumping just thinking about it.
At the end of the day, I could not honestly say what is more exciting: earning the privilege of becoming a third class or getting immersed into the Coast Guard fleet for a large chunk of this upcoming summer. I am looking forward to being able to not have to brace up in the hallways (I'll be able to relax while walking through the hallways) in addition to having my own fourth class next year. Since I will have been in their shoes so recently, I want to be the person who is able to make their day that much better, helping them through this crazy life of being a Coast Guard cadet. The only thing I will never get used to is coming back from summer vacation and being addressed as "sir" by kids virtually the same age as me. Nevertheless, my heart pounds in my chest just thinking about it all, slowly becoming one step closer to graduating as a Coast Guard officer in a mere three years. Bring it on!
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