[ED NOTE] This article contains only information and subject matter on two topics - the United States Merchant Marine Academy and Life Approaching 50. For those looking for the latest musings related to the Washington Capitals please scroll down if these two subjects are of no interest to yo.
Day 2 of our journey to drop Chris off started with me waking up first and getting ready, then I got Cindy up, then Chris. It was Thursday morning and he needed to report for the start of indoctrination no later than 8:30 am.... so we started this evolution at 6AM and headed down to "The Giraffe Room" for breakfast at 6:45 but the place was packed so we opted out of breakfast. At this point Chris realized we needed to make a detour to get a permanent marker so he could put his name on his bags, once that was accomplished we headed to the USMMA and got into the queue to drop him off. He got in line at about 8:15 and we saw him come out of in processing and head to the barracks at about 09:30. This whole evolution was very different from when I started at the Academy 30 years ago. On that day I recall my parents dropping me off and me seeing them one last time about 45 minutes later when we and our luggage marched off Barney Square (now called "the grinder") about an hour later. Now parents spend most of the entire morning and you see them march into lunch after they literally wave goodbye to you. There are pictures posted on the Academy's Parents Page often during this period though we won't actually talk to him for 10 days when he'll get 5 minutes to call, again this is slightly different then when I started though not much.
The military/regimental aspect does complicate some things though it simplifies others. For our part the complication is Chris forgot to pack the new pair of glasses into his suitcase and halfway back down the Jersey Turnpike we noticed them in the backseat of the car. Luckily we had an option and we fed ex'ed them overnight to the lacrosse coach's office - hopefully he got them today and gave them to our son; we might not know for sure until not this Sunday but the next one. It does simplify things, we know he is safe and not getting into any mischief nor will he have much of a chance to until we see him next time which we be the weekend of September 5th.
On the life approaching 50 part, I do find myself looking at the few pictures of him on the website more than I thought I would and I have replaced the screen background that was from my last fishing trip with the boys with one of him when he first reported to the Academy inside on the basketball court in O'Hara Hall. I also met two of my classmates who have kids (one a son, the other a daughter) in the Class of 2012 and we talked a little. We all are proud but don't feel at all like we thought we would when we were younger and contemplated future events like this. Oh well next I'll post a few of the pics I took but right now I'm still catching back up for the days off.
ACTA NON VERBA